Old homesteads always catch my eye as my husband and I drive around rural Prince Edward Island. On my own on a calm sunny day this month, I stopped occasionally to take some photos of old houses.
The most interesting one this day is mere meters from the road with a view to the sea not 100 meters away.
The two story single dwelling looks to have been white in its day with a blue storm door. There is a window in the attic and a shed attached on one side. Light shines into the main floor from the windows on the back of the house and is visible through the front windows. The roof is sagging and may be leaking.
I can imagine its history. Those walls witnessed the young man bring his shy young bride into her in-laws’ home. They absorbed the cries of the woman’s pain in childbirth and delighted in a young child’s hesitant first steps.
The old house cradled his dying parents as the grandchildren played in hushed tones by the fire. The repeated lessons done at the kitchen table almost made the old walls learn the times tables too. Almost.
Then the young ones were gone, the girls married in a simple white dress which they all wore. How handsome the men looked in their best Sunday clothes. Then my imagination fails me as the scene approaches my current life story and I have questions.
Who was the last resident of this house? Is that person in care somewhere on the island or is the older generation deceased? Who owns the old place now? Are any family members left on the island? What will become of the old place?
Once this house stood proud against the elements as children were conceived, born, raised and death took some family members. Time and the elements can be cruel to the old homes which wrapped their walls around the tears, pain, love and joy of a family.