“Well, it wasn’t a good dream that’s for sure. I came home after a long time away and you weren’t there,” I hesitantly say to my mom. “What do you mean I wasn’t there? Where was I?” she asks. “I don’t know,” I replied.
Dreams are peculiar because certain details pertaining to location or how you arrived at that location are seldom if ever laid out. One minute you are lying down comfortably on your bed and the next minute you’re battling against evil war lords with 9 foot swords. How you came to exist on the battle field fighting along side peasants in the Middle Ages are specifics that aren’t usually explained in our dreams.
“You don’t know?” my mom asks with a concerned tone. “No, I looked for you, but I couldn’t find you,” I say to her. “That’s strange,” she says.
I stood in front of my house with a single large black duffle bag draped around my shoulder. The sky was filled with dark storm clouds that appeared to be on the verge of exploding. No doubt rain was on its way. It must have been mid September when clean dry air swoops into the city and knocks decaying leaves off of trees. The colorful pre-autumn leaves made the dirty streets of Bristol, look beautiful. September is a true month for fresh starts. Summer begins to fade and schools reopened their gates allowing students to rmake the current semester better than the previous. September is a word derived from Septum which is latin for the lucky number seven. This month is commonly regarded as a month filled with wonder.
My house looked the same as it did 15 years ago when we sold it. The deck that my grandfather built was still structurally intact after all this time. It was his final masterpiece before his death. The blacktop drive way that I remember designing with my father was without holes which suggested that it was being cared for properly. Even the basketball court in the backyard was still erect. It felt good to be home, but what was I doing here?
I walked up the three white stairs that connected the sidewalk with the front door. The last time my feet touched down on these stairs I was a boy. Now I was a man. A man full of both good and bad experiences standing in this timeless spot. With thoughts bouncing off the walls of my mind, I opened the screen door and nervously knocked on the door. “What am I doing back here? Did my family return back East without telling me? Was I really this out of the loop?” I secretly asked myself.
Time seemed to stop as I patiently waited for someone recognizable to answer the door. The longer I stood alone outside on this quiet mid September day the more I began to become pensive. “Why did I quit my job in Arizona and head overseas anyway?,” I asked myself. “What a dumb move. There is nothing in the world that can take the place of family,” I go on to say.
I shake my head and do my best to remove any negative thoughts that creep into my mental. Not regretting my decisions of the past, I think about what I accomplished in life and all the stories that I will eagerly share with my entire family. The various trips to communist countries. The countless fierce basketball games against foreign professional teams. And let’s not forget about the myriad of cultures I learned about.
“Grrr…this is ridiculous,” I say to myself, and ring the doorbell. “It’s been 15 years since I’ve been back. There should be a calvary waiting outside to welcome me,” I say in a whining voice. Any excitement left over from my arrival back on American soil was quickly fading away. “I’ve been waiting in front of this screen door for 5 minutes now. Where is everyone?” I yell out loud.
Just when a different side of myself, void of any form of respect was about to emerge, the wooden door behind the screen door quickly opens. “Hey, you must be Ade,” a stranger says to me. “Yeah, thats me,” I say with a look of bewilderment. “What’s going on here? I’ve been waiting outside for almost 5 minutes” I tell the stranger. “Oh, this is just a little get together,” he says with laughter. “You must have knocked before you rang the doorbell. It’s a little loud inside so I’m sorry we didn’t hear you. Anyway, come on in everyone’s inside. I’m sure they are dying to see you,” the stranger says.
The mystery man steps to the side and allows me to step inside. He takes my black duffle bag from my shoulder and says,” everyone is scattered around the kitchen and the dinning room. Make yourself at home!”
“This is my home,” I thought to myself.