I have a favorite house on the route Sam and I take each day. In the beginning, I liked it because it was obvious no one lived there, or had for a long time. Someone kept the grass trimmed and the flowerbeds weeded, this being suburbia and all, but the bushes grew ever higher.
The fact that the rooms were devoid of furniture and quite dusty supported this theory, too. (Of course I looked in the windows!)
Me being me, I made up stories to fit the house: a ghost frightened everyone away, madwoman in the attic, heirs fighting over an estate, meth lab that had contaminated the whole property.
About a year ago, I started to notice activity, but only on the weekends and evenings. Someone cut down the gigantic pine tree out front (took two weekends and several evenings) and turnd it into sawdust. The very ugly front door was replaced by something pretty. At this point a neighbor drew me into conversation. She had no idea why the house stood empty for so long without a For Sale sign, but we agreed that the house and yard looked much better.
Late in the summer, the owner had a painting party - paint cans all over the front porch, friends laughing and waving brushes and beer bottles. Boxes for new appliances stood next to the trash cans. The owner made lots of little changes in the fall and winter, but with warm weather he's completed the landscaping and planted grass on the bare patches. When Sam and I walked by today, he was sitting outside, having a beer with a friend, talking about the baseball season opener.
Once so dead, the whole place now looks terrifically alive.
Words Written: one hundred and six
Lessons Graded: too many, but most pretty good