I Love My Porch.

6 July, 2009 § Leave a comment

Sometimes I think my front porch is a little slice of heaven. No, really! it is. Apart from the reason that it is the only place in the quirky little establishment I call home where one can connect to the outside world via the Internet, the fact that it sits on the second story of our apartment building enables me to take in a great deal of sights from a delightfully undetected vantage point.

For example: many a budding couple (gray, spry, Asian, white, giggling, crying, whispering, yelling, sauntering) have passed underneath my balcony this past year and the snippets of conversation I overhear, however accidentally, provide me with an endless source of amusement. 9 times out of 10, no one thinks to look up when they walk past – – which is mostly likely a good thing. I know the contortions of my face as I try to contain my hilarity would scare even me in the mirror. After all, no one has cast me in the role of weeping Juliet yet…

This little porch is festooned with the following: a well-loved yet fully operational string of ivory Christmas lights that are now three and a half years old (of course left up year-long); two broken but ridiculously comfortable chairs (one slightly more stationary than the other; usually offered to guests unless said visitor is not a favorite around here); one very brightly colored, somewhat droopy Bolivian hammock that swings comfortably, especially when a breeze gusts through the balustrades; and – – perhaps best of all – – a snake of a clothesline that crosses my entire half of the porch.

Right now my housemate’s fresh laundry is draped over the rope clothesline and I almost feel like I have returned to third grade, building forts out of sheets, blankets and my dad’s shirts and then scooting underneath the billowing draperies so I can alternately be an explorer, a dying Eskimo or an Indian warrior-princess. The faint smell of laundry detergent mixed in with cut grass, slight car exhaust and fragrant flowering bushes will always be the smell of July in my mind.

On the right of my apartment, an old, sturdy pine with sparse green knots of needles and sap stands sentinel, sending beams of greenish light into the crooked window panes in my kitchen, but directly in front of the porch is my very favorite tree – – a slender, mature birch that whispers through the gusts, shivers delightfully when it rains and almost chortles when the black squirrel family jump from branch to branch until they’re on the roof overhead. Sometimes when I’m sitting out here, a particularly inquisitive fellow will perch out on the limb closest to the balcony, bushy tail waving behind and agile claws clicking in front of his chest until, with an unexpected spring, he disappears. He’s probably wooing the gray squirrel who lives in the Mastin’s sycamore as we speak. Cheeky bugger.

And while I love when company, human and otherwise, joins me up here, this little spot of molting floorboard, creaking ceiling beam and strong balustrades is the perfect place to be alone without being lonely. Front porch! There is love.

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What’s one of your favorite places to which to retreat, rest or hang out and then emerge rejunevated and more… yourself?

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