He is now sixteen years old and goes from time to time to visit his grandma. Every time he enters to that house he smells again the old furniture, his granny’s perfume. He sees the big plane made by his own father and remembers the times when he entered in panic each time he saw it. He opens the same refrigerator’s door, and the crayon mark made by him is still visible in the kitchen’s wall. There’s a paper on the wall with the drawing of a lion made by a seven year-old boy. Then he remembers the time when he drew it.
He visits his grandmother, but he never goes to the backyard where all the family used to have those succulent lunches. The day when he silently walked and the room was noisy because of all his family going in to the house, he went firmly to the backyard to have a great surprise. The huge gallery was half of what he remembered, the long table in which six years ago like fifty people would sit down, that day no more than fifteen people would fit. Everything was smaller! He could even reach the tall shelf in which his mom used to hide his football ball. That shelf had always been hated because when he started bothering with the ball, it was automatically put up there and no chance to reach it was available. Now, with only lifting his hand he could take the ball out of the damn shelf. But one kick to the ball would break the window or go next door, when six years ago all he could do is hit the turtle that used to bite his foot.
He had many questions in his mind although he knew the great reason for all of them. How could I have played a football game in this yard with seven cousins? Now we can’t enter more than three in here! How could I have found that dreadful shelf so superior? It is not high now! What had happened to it all? He could believe it, but he knew the answer and he didn’t want to assume it, to believe it.
Six years… was it really such a long time? Had he grown up so much since then? How could he have grown up so much and so fast?! Was it normal to see his childhood reduced to that scale? Huge objects were normal-sized now. Great idols were just common people with a tightened girlish costume. Why couldn’t he still be a six year-old boy? All his childhood was behind now and only good memories were left. Little by little, while memories came back, he was each time more depressed. He wanted to be a child. He wanted to play football, wanted his mom to put the ball on the shelf. He wanted to see fifty unknown people sitting at the table, having lunch together and talking of not understandable subjects, of topics without sense, talking, talking, and never stop talking. He wanted to see fifty unknown people and not just the fifteen relatives they were, talking of things he could now understand but still didn’t care. He didn’t listen to anyone, he didn’t care. He just remembered a great and lost moment of his childhood with every single object of his grandmother’s old house; and wanted them back.
Pic: my brother Germán and me - 1992