The door’s open. With my heavy backpack, I enter the house.
The living room is there, waiting for me. I see its “L” shape, separating two locations: one room to receive visitants, another with the TV as its major point, designed to entertain. I wonder how many times I have slept on that brown couch. Many, certainly, much more than I can remember.
I soon realize that almost all of our furniture is made of wood. It is, I think, a great reminder of my hometown’s imperial past: it was one of Brazil’s most important economic centers at that time. Today, it doesn’t get near ten percent of that. Wooden anticque furniture is all that lasted.
Why haven’t I noticed this before?
Perhaps I took all of this for granted.
My grandmother’s ceramic vases, for instance. She built a small colection while she was still among us. What are they now, 60, 70 years old? I wonder how many special family moments thoses vases “witnessed”. Now, from up the cabinets and tables in our “visitant” room, they see me enter the house after months.
I step inside, close the door, lock it. Look around like it’s the first time I see it, checking every detail.
There’s new flower arrangement on the (wooden) coffe table. Around it, two white (and as old as I can recall) couches contrast with the rest of cabinets and tables in the room.
I walk a bit, get to the next part, where two brown (and much younger) couches are also in L shape, to give the TV the attention it demands. The backpack is heavy, I take it off my back and put it on the couch.
Yes, I took all of that for granted. We don’t give much importance to things we’ve always had. I wish I’d stopped to admire this place when I still lived here. Wait… what do I smell? Do I smell… cake? Chocolate cake?
A sound comes, I think it’s from the kitchen.
“Mom?”, I ask.
And then she comes, with a huge smile on her face, her arms open to hug me. I feel like I never left.