Carlisle Street

The folded blueprints I plucked from my grey bucket came from the building department at the village. They felt like a treasure in my hands; I wanted to delve into them with abandon.

I separated the inky paper folds, spreading the map flat on the floor. I squatted to read the details of the reverse print. The building commissioner had given his approval, stamped September 4, 1964.

We were lot #18 in Colony Point. William D. Murphy was the architect . . .  ¾” Driftwood panelling in the family room, (“paneling” was misspelled)  . . .  Donley Brothers Dutch Oven Door in the fireplace below the mantle. There were views from all the insides including the basement and crawl space. I had views of my house I had never seen before.

I followed the thin white lines with my fingertip. Soon I was no longer seeing empty space. The blueprints came alive with colored details as I remembered. A pink and green mural on the breakfast nook wall provided a backdrop to the pink wrought-iron kitchen set. A mural in shades of green hugged the dining room walls. “No sliding on the wood floors,” Mom would yell so our socks would not pick up splinters and lodge in the bottoms of our feet. Satin-covered love seats in creamy white with crimson piping seams made a social circle in the living room. A pair of twin beds was in the master bedroom with headboards bumped up against a wall of Wedgewood blue and crème damask paper; black marbled double sinks were in the dressing area. A Ping-Pong table, which was used for things other than table tennis, and Dad’s drum set complemented both ends of the basement floor. My mother and dad filled the house. They also filled it with Tim and me.

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