Tuesday, December 6, 2016

keep it small

The boarding house was on 114th street a couple of houses down from the boardwalk. Two bathrooms shared by 11 rooms.  Some rooms had one or two people in them and some rooms held more, much more. No guests after 6pm read the sign on the front door. The tall lanky guy that lived next door to me, in a ten foot by ten space would open the door about 7pm on bitter cold nights, and a brood of six kids would quietly climb the stairs to sleep for the night. The ages ranged from single digits to young teenagers, they were all his kids. One of the girls who seemed to be around my age, or year or so younger was friendly to me. She had a sad smile and rarely spoke, but I liked her.  Living in a small room myself, my possessions were very few, but I knew I had more than any of them.  One of my cherished possessions was a miniature porcelain set of living room furniture in a tiny box that fit in my pocket. I had no where to display it but I loved it. It had pretty pink flowers painted on it and consisted of a couch, two chairs and a coffee table. Too tiny for even for a doll house.   It was December and it was freezing cold one night and I passed that girl in the hallway, I just had to give her that tiny box.  I knew she would be able to keep it since it was so small. When I handed it to her I just remember the smile on her face and the eye contact we made. I couldn't Imagine having to spend all day outside and sneaking in just to sleep.  I wonder how she is and how her life turned out.


  1. Oh how poignant this is, Drita. I read something yesterday that said each kindness you do ripples out to touch everyone whose life the receiver of your kindness touches, and everyone who those people's lives touch, and on and on. So really, in that loving rush of generosity, of wanting to make that girl's life better in some small way, you changed the whole world. i do believe that.

    1. Thank you for your kind comment. I have been feeling very nostalgic lately. I'm not sure if it's the season, bu I have been thinking about all the people that have touched my life. Some of them, like the girl in my post I haven't thought about in many years.

  2. A lovely story, at the right time of year.
    I too am an immigrant, often homesick and given to nostalgia about past times and the people I knew then.

    Thank you for visiting.

  3. I am a new follower, but Google won’t let me follow as Friko. Hope to see you again.

  4. What a effective description. Seems almost out of dickens. Lovely