Because it’s falling apart and no one cares….
I wonder who lived here. I wonder where they are now. Was it a big family? Were they happy? Did they have meals all together at the kitchen table every night? Did they sit out on the wonderful balcony and have late afternoon tea? Did the kids run around outside and play in the yard? What did this magnificent old place look like when it was in it’s full grandeur?
Who knows the answer to these questions? Does anyone? I see so many of these empty, abandoned houses in my travels and every time it makes me stop and think about who lived there and what happened to them. A family once lived in that house. They were most likely happy and had kids and pets and lived a wonderful life. They celebrated birthdays and holidays together with their whole family. They loved their house. And they loved each other too. At least that is what I tell myself.
It used to be you would see one or two of these abandoned houses along the rode. But now you see them everywhere. One right after another. Why? Why is there so many? What happened to the family that lived there and didn’t they have any family members left to take it over before it fell into such disrepair? It didn’t look like that when it was abandoned. It was a beautiful home. Yes, maybe it needed a few repairs but it didn’t deserve to be left to ruin.
“It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home.” ~ Unknown
There is one such house on a route I take quite frequently. I always noticed it and it struck a cord with me because there was always something going on in the house or in the yard. It really stuck out due to all the people there and also because it seemed the family was so happy and joyful. They always had picnics and parties out in the yard and numerous kids were running around playing. It was so nice to see this.Then one day I drove by and the house seemed empty. After driving by there a few more times my suspicions were confirmed. They were gone. What happened? How could a happy family like this all of the sudden be gone? And with all the people in the family, not one of them wanted the house.
Now granted, I know times are tough and there have been so many foreclosures in the country but are all of these empty houses a victim of the times or something else entirely? Do the people who owned them die and there is no one around to take over the house? No one to sell it? And then to make matters worse, they never get torn down, they just sit there and get covered by weeds and fall apart. It is, in my opinion, one of the saddest things.
I don’t know why it bothers me so much but it does. I think about these houses and think of all the happy times spent inside those walls that are now falling apart. I can envision the Christmas tree in the window and little kids dressed up in their costumes knocking on the front door at Halloween. The owners and their kids quickly coming to greet them with an apple or a bag of candy made by the lady of the house. I see the kids rooms full of their prized possessions. Their stuffed animals and games. What happened to their things? Was everything just left inside to rot along with the house?
“Home is a place you grew up wanting to leave, and grow old wanting to get back to.” ~ John Ed Pearce
I see so many vintage items and pictures at antique stores when I go there and I think the same thing about the items. These pictures were once hanging on the wall in a family’s home. This light was on a table beside a child’s bed. A family once ate their meals off of this beautiful set of dishes. The old toys especially the cars and dolls really get to me. I can picture the little curly haired girl playing with her beloved doll while her brother played with his cars on the floor. So many memories, now just sitting there waiting.
We are told these are all just things and they don’t matter, it is what we keep in the heart that really matters. The house sitting in disrepair. The old photos still in their original frames. The beautiful vintage desk that once sat in the parlor. Yes, they are just things, but they belonged to someone. Someone who loved them and someone that was loved.
I leave you as always with a question and a quote. What do “you” think when you see these abandoned houses sitting along the rode? Do you even think about them at all? Is it just me?
“Home is the nicest word there is.” ~ Laura Ingalls Wilder