Memories – Maison avec un vigne au dessus d’un escalier by Henri Martin

Maison avec un vigne au dessus d’un escalier by Henri Martin (Via Findlay Galleries )

It was the holidays, it was August, and it was the South of France. Little Paul thought he would have forgotten the way to the summer house, but each year, as the car reached the front porch, he could hear the grasshoppers murmuring their repetitive melody, the one to which he would fall asleep, wake up, and play all day long, and as soon as the engine stopped, he rushed to open the door and  bound up the staircase two by two.

It was an early evening and the sky had just began to set the sun free, offering the world a gradient of amber and yellow pastel  tones until the navy blue of the Night would take over.

His little arms bare, warmed by the lasting rays, were already opening the doors, letting out the familiar stuffy air contained in the rooms which had been shut since last summer. It didn’t take long before it felt as if he had never left. As his parents unpacked the suitcases of light summer clothes and his big sister laid her holiday homework out on the living room table, Paul hurried back out. That is what he enjoyed  most about the house: being able to leave as he pleased and play outside in the garden without having to ask for permission.

he thought he would run and explore the surroundings, looking for changes which might have occurred in the neighborhood since last year, but he stood still for a moment, hands on his hips, facing the far off hills . He took in the beauty of the landscape, the sound of the pans clanging as  his mother prepared dinner, the scent of lavender, and the sweet murmur of the grasshoppers. Paul realised in this instance that he was  growing up  and was not a careless child anymore. The memories he had spontaneously created previously in his mind did not seem eternal anymore. From now on,  he knew he would have to anticipate the memories fading. The moments shared with his parents and sister would come to an end eventually. As the feeling of nostalgia reached his heart, Paul took a deep breath, and comforted by the tranquility of the South of France, he carried on exploring, running aimlessly and making memories for the future.