Exactly 30 years ago today, my family moved a distance of 200km to a new home. (Why the date has remained in my mind would be an interesting study!)
The lilacs were in full bloom and we moved into a huge Victorian that as kids felt like a mansion. It even had a tower. Dad and Mom did a lot of work to the place over the years , and the next owner also made improvements, but now it is in shambles and looks like a crack house with weeds as high as small trees and window screens bent outward. It is a crime.
The one hundred-year-old house had been barely touched when my parents bought it. The original moldings, pantry with pass-through window to the dining room, light switches, and even toilet were still there, and in good condition. The carpet in the front hall was red, and my mother envisioned a bride coming down the stairs on this (which was me, many years later).
There were two staircases, large closets in the upstairs hallway, and closets in 4 out of 5 bedrooms.
There was a huge attic that was never renovated, but where my brothers and I would go and play despite the old peculiar smell and the tendency of cluster flies to gather in the windows.
As I look at the photo, I also see the attached barn on the left. It was a great place to play and explore, and we found treasures in there for years. It also was largely untouched, and even had a little manure house attached to the back- still full of old, rotted manure!
This is where my love of old houses began. I am proud of my parents for the improvements they made. I am proud of the way they respected the work of the original owners. And I am proud of the way they made a house a home.
It was not a warm house, but my memories of it certainly are.
If I could, the nostalgic part of me would love to buy it back and redeem it.