penny in a castle

A digital chapbook.

This old house

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This is the time of year when this old house feels its age.

During the summer, when the windows are open, the sun shines warm upon it and cool breezes blow through the trees and windows, it remembers its youth and its years do not show.

But in the autumn, when the leaves fall and frost starts to rime the edges of the grass and leaves – the faults and wrinkles of a house in its decline soon become evident.

Seventy years is a long time to be a house.

The cold starts to seep in the home early in the evening – by nightfall it starts to shiver.  The cold oozes in through the ancient windows and the chinks between the doors.

It’s worse when the north wind blows and howls, rattling the windows in their wooden frames like chattering teeth. It whistles through the increasingly thin insulation in the walls.  The rain beats down in icy sheets.  Later snow will shush up the edges of every nook and cranny.

Even with the heat cranked up, the coldness never leaves the outer edges, and as soon as the furnace clicks off it rushes into the few pools of warmth.

The kids will complain and ask us to turn up the thermostat and we will yell back to “Put another sweater on!”  My youngest, who went sockless all summer and is still defiantly sock-free will probably suffer the most this year.

But there is no point in heating the sparrows.

Yet, I still feel the comfort and warmth this old house has to give.  Sure, we add an extra layers of clothing – pulling on long johns and a fluffy sweater.  We keep soft blankets piled high in the basket ready to use any time – to give to a visiting guest who isn’t used to the arctic temperature our thermostat is set to. Or to snuggle up under for an impromptu story session.

The kettle sings more often for a cup of tea or hot chocolate.  The oven bakes a few extra cookies, warming up the kitchen briefly.  We curl up with a book.

Even wearing a winter toque around or keeping it on for bed isn’t unheard of.  It’s starting to become a fashion statement.

Yet, there is something about this time of year that makes me appreciate the warmth within this old house when the cold wind blows.

It’s that feeling that it is time again to close in, curl under.  A time of quiet resting and waiting, of seeking coziness and comfort. Of staying closer to home and family.

In this old house.


Written by pennyinacastle

October 27, 2013 at 2:59 am

Posted in Random thoughts

Tagged with , , ,

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