I almost forgot to post today. I thought maybe I could find a quote or something instead. But then I started scrolling through my pictures and writing to see if I could expand on something I already had and then I found this. I wrote it a while ago when lockdown first started.
Once upon a time, not too long ago, I was the central hub of all the activity in this house. Shoes would lie scattered along the ground, various bags were dumped and retrieved from the floor at different times of the day and a selection of outerwear ranging from hoodies, coats, caps, scarves and gloves depending on the weather would find their way into my domain. I was the life and soul of this house. At least once a day, the lady of the house would come and rearrange the bags, coats and shoes and then wipe me clean with some sweet-smelling spray.
There was a constant buzz around my area. I would be one of the first places to come down to in the morning, before even breakfast. I would be there protecting the girls of the house if they slipped and fell into my lap – no injuries were ever made on the shiny tiles decorating my frame. Well, not any serious injures anyway, just occasional cuts or bruises. The shiny cream tiles paved the way to the lounge on the one side and the kitchen on the other side. I would get to meet so many interesting people as they came and stood on my shiny cream tiles.
And then something mysterious happened. People in my house got scared to come near the doorway. They would stand by the lounge door almost cowering at the sound of the doorbell or knock on the door. They would wait 5 minutes before carefully tiptoeing across my tiles to open the front door.
The smelly shoes, coats and bags that I would moan about for being almost hurled or thrown onto me were now absent. I miss the laughter, chatter and noise and even the stomping, yelling and crying. It’s so quiet in my quarter now. I can hear the distant laughing in another room. I can hear the opening and slamming of a door in another area of the house but nothing comes around here now. All the shoes have disappeared from the front and clutter the back of the house by the french doors.
Handbags, school bags and work rucksacks which were my key responsibility to keep safe overnight are now stuffed away in the corners of the house, out of sight. Coats have been hung away neatly while hoodies and jumpers lie strewn across the sitting room floor. The piano lid at the far end of the sitting room remains open for impromptu practices in the middle of the day. I can hear beautiful renditions of Fur Elise waft over, a little hesitant at times, a little too fast at other times as eager little fingers trip over the black and white keys.
The birds ramp up their tune as if in competition to this new music coming to their ears. The birds must be so confused – there’s no cars, no smog, no people and its quiet all day long. Have humans become extinct? They fly in abundance and full abandon to this new lifestyle they have been granted. They sing to their heart’s content and sing very loudly.
As the clock ticks closer to lunchtime, my spirits lift up slightly at the thought of people coming across to go to the kitchen. Will they stop to admire the clean porchway with the sweet-smelling flowers placed carefully in the middle of the table next to the Dettol wipes and hand sanitiser? Will they pause to remove shoes and coats while chattering and laughing? Will they even come, as the clock carries on ticking past lunchtime into the afternoon? Where have they all gone? Is there another way into the kitchen? Again all the noise seems to be in another room far away from here. What has happened? Have I done something to upset this family? Will people ever come in here again?