The Old Place

written May 27, 2010

I pulled into the parking space in front of the corner unit condominium where I’ve parked for the last five years.   The condo that was tree-lined when we bought it, with huge pine trees towering over the place and birds chirping; an awesome pink-flowering tree on the corner of the lot.   I was a newlywed and we had quickly outgrown our small apartment nearby.   This condo appeared, it seemed, at just the right time.

This is my last stop here.

All the boxes are gone.   It’s empty inside.    Nine months ago, in about exactly the same amount of time of my pregnancy, I found out my marriage had been a lie and that life in this condo was not what I thought it was.    It took nine months to carry my first child living in this condo and then nine months to undo the life we’d built in this condo.    I’d come up with the money to pay my half of the negative equity for the sale of this place.   I’d packed boxes and cats, watched as movers and friends and family arrived to help move the household possessions important to me and to my son for our new apartment in a house in desperate need of paint.

As I parked and walked to the door to get the last of the things left in the condo, the two morning doves were sitting on the railing.   When the pine trees were cut down shortly after we moved in, the birds I loved moved on to other trees but the morning doves seemed to stay around and appeared on the patio railings every so often.

As I walked near the doves sitting perched on the railing, going up the steps I’d come up and down so many times during my married life, they looked my way.

One flew away first, and then the other.

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