We were all sitting in the big, big first-floor courtyard. Is it even there now? Will it still look as big as it used to, to my child eyes?
As it had been every day that summer, the brother and sister duo had come to our house (not home, because that’s what it was) for their tuition lessons. Mom taught them in school as well as at our house.
We sat on mats spread in our courtyard in the afternoons (or was it the evenings?) and studied until it grew dark.
It was one of the good things about our rented house, the ample courtyard. We had rented it even though we owned a family home to flee the persecution of my dad’s family. Turns out, they care for him even less than we do, so much for blood relations. My mom had had enough, consequently so did my dad and we retreated peacefully. So, it was kind of sad but also nice.
Now, as I look back, many years past, I think we had some good times there. We had a nice bathroom with a shower and all. We had the whole floor to ourselves with comfortable space. And, we had that courtyard. Weirdly, I used to, sometimes, get scared of the enormity of it, but now I recall it the most about that house.
Once, a breeze was blowing, and it carried a dandelion seed into our midst on its back. We were past delighted. We, kids chased after it, thinking, it was something out of the world and somewhat lucky. I don’t remember who actually ended up catching it but it was cheery and fun, something worth reminiscing about, even today. Summer breezes were a refreshing break from the heat, rain, even better, we ran in the courtyard, we skipped in the summer breeze, danced in the rain, laughed and played.
One day, which left a special mark on my memory, was how we ended our homework time. We were studying late into the evening, lying on our mats in the courtyard, when little bats started flying over above our heads. That definitely was a cue to end our little meeting. Mom moved us into the little portico. We studied a bit and then concluded. The dusk, the feelings that I felt as a child, what was it, I haven’t been able to put a finger on it, but, now, as a new adult, I feel the same. Now, I know that dusk was a prediction of how the rest of my life was going to be, how I was going to feel later in life, where I was going to stand.