Travel Notes – London 03, England

Tuesday, December 14th, 2004

Mr Williams took me back in time on Sunday. We visited the house that I used to live in 23 years ago. It’s the nice little thumbnail house you see on this entry. 107 The Greenway in Burnt Oak, Colindale, has changed. The cozy brown house with green rimmed windows, a leafy green door with a rusty brass handle is now gone. In its place now stands a small house with a wooden brown door with window frames painted in white. It doesn’t look as big as it used to be 23 years ago. I know this might be due to the fact that I’ve grown in terms of height, while the house itself remains the same in size. I’ve waited 23 years to come back to this place and as the wind howled and bit my ears, memories of my faerielike childhood came rushing back to me as I stood in front of the house that I grew up in a long long time ago. I remember how we used to jump from Mum’s windowsill onto her bed each time she goes out to do the groceries. We would jump up and down in turns until we hear the front door click, a sign that she has come home. I can still recall the excitement of how we would hurriedly tidy up the bed so she wouldn’t find out what we’ve been up to while she was away. The window in her bedroom upstairs was the witness of our playful silly behaviour back then. Mr Williams gave me all the time I needed as I stood and looked around the area which was once home to me, flashes of childhood scenes racing in my head. I can’t even find the right words to describe the feeling of happiness that seeped into me that day. As he took a picture of me standing in front of the house, the owner peeked through the window and finally came out to chat with me. He told me he sleeps in the bedroom that once belonged to my Mum and Dad. The place where I spent countless hours jumping up and down the bed with my brother and sisters some 23 years ago.

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