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Saturday, October 11, 2008

Porches

The morning is gray, and I'm up early. The sounds of a circular saw and hammering assured that. The new porch is progressing fabulously. I can barely contain my happiness. I believe I will be able to have my birthday cake on my front porch!

We've never owned a house with a front porch...not one big enough for a chair or a swing anyway. And I have ached for one. Some of my strongest memories about the homes of loved ones are about their porches.

The house I grew up in had a great front porch. The floor and steps were concrete with a smooth red finish. It was perfect for playing jacks...when you got up to 'pigs in the pen' they slid straight in with no resistance. And I must have jumped rope for thousands of hours on it. There was a huge cactus at one end of the porch that was supposed to be thornless...but it had little hair-like thorns almost invisible to the naked eye. Inevitably the rope would pick up some of those, and they would end up in my hands.. They hurt like fire and were impossible to get out. I developed a life-long hatred of cactus...all succulents really.

My great Aunt Ruth had a tiny little house in Iowa, but it had a porch big enough for a swing. Each summer she taught me to embroider or crochet or tat, and I loved to sit out on the swing with whatever my project was. Heavenly.

My grandma's porch had wide steps with high side outcroppings that had wide concrete tops...perfect for pretending you were on stage or just sitting on Indian style with a doll on your lap. Aunt Tootse's house next door had a screened-in porch with cots. In the summer my boy cousins got to sleep out there.

I know the guys outside take great pride in their work and are building a sturdy and beautiful structure for us. I wonder if they think about the fact that they're also constructing future memories.

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