The Trees Remain the Same…

Hubs took me over to the house where he grew up.

The lot had been scraped and a McMansion built so nothing was left of the home as he knew it.

He couldn’t point and say,

“There’s my bedroom…and the garage where my band used to practice…”

We went around to the alley where he rode his be-wheeled Flexi-Racer,


and took a tumble over the handlebars of his bike splitting open his forehead, gushing young blood.

“See that tree at the end?”

“Yes!”  I said fully expecting him to say he’d fallen out of it during a particularly brave feat of Super Boyhood,

“That’s where I buried…must have been 100 baby rabbits!”

My childhood home had also undergone a transformation.

Standing shoulder to shoulder a dozen Georgian Cottages remained unchanged but for the color of their front doors.


No exterior alterations could be made to these listed houses.

“My father would have had the wisteria down,” I remarked.  No wild, overgrown gardens for him.

I was attending a party next door to my old house and looked up from the garden to see my bedroom window, or what used to be my bedroom window, on the right.


I finagled a look inside.

I wanted to see my old room, the tiniest one in the house.

It had been converted into an ensuite bathroom for the large bedroom that had doubled as a playroom for my brother and me, was it so long ago?

“It makes a larger bathroom than it did a bedroom,” I said to no-one in particular because the current owners had never known it any other way.

I wandered around the downstairs which had undergone renovations that knocked through walls, revealing fireplaces,


and opened up the stairway turning the three cramped rooms into one open plan space housing kitchen, dining and living room with an extension for the downstairs loo.

I felt no familiar stirrings for the family home until I looked out of the window from the once-upon-a-time-playroom upstairs and saw a familiar sight,


The old Horse Chestnut at the bottom of the garden, behind the garden wall.  The tree had not been ours to look after, my father would probably have taken it down too, he had an innate distaste of anything that smacked of the countryside.

As a child I enjoyed its seasonal cycling through Spring bud, to Summer leaf to flaming Autumnal red and gnarly Winter bare.

Our childhood homes may have become unrecognizable but their trees remained to offer shelter for our memories.


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