As the car pulled up to the gates, my mouth fell open in amazement. Behind the rusty, unhinged doors, an enormous mansion appeared. The wall around the premises gave away a few clues about the state of this landmark estate itself; the cement had turned to dust in some places, and was thus no longer able to keep the firm grip on the rocks that it had for such a long time. The holes in the wall were like scars; gaping wounds that called for attention, but have been ignored for way too long. Time and a lack of attention seem to have that effect on many things in life.
I park the Ford just outside the gate. If anything were to collapse, I didn’t want his dark green car, which we both loved, to be covered by debris. It might be an old car, but it was full of memories. Each mile on the odometer was one with a story – of when we met, how we fell in love, of how we roamed the world together. I slowly walked up to the house. It was so big, so magnificent, I wanted to drink it all in. J came down the curved steps by the main entrance. “What do you think?” “Babe, I think it’s amazing, I am in shock!” “Well, I think it’s a piece of crap, really. It’s all crumbling down, and it needs serious work. There’s not a single wall standing on itself on the inside.” “C’mon, but look at the potential!” I interjected, “Look at how big it is, how majestic! And the view from the courtyard here is just insane, so beautiful!” He shrugged his shoulders. To J, it seemed to be more of a burden – he inherited the faint shadow of a home, and now he felt responsible to fix what time and negligence had destroyed.
That didn’t change my mind, however. Sure, it might be a bit of a mess now, but wait till we are done renovating. Right then and there, I promised myself I would help him restore this place to its former glory. I inherited my handy hands from my dad, and I loved working on and around the house. Couldn’t wait to put my power tools to work… The plans were already taking form in my head, down to the size and color of the chandelier that should hang in the entrance hall.
On one side, where the courtyard overlooked the country side, a low wall was put up so one wouldn’t mindlessly walk off the side of the hill while admiring the scenery. I sat down. The sun would be setting soon, it was close to the golden hour. One would be able to see the sun sink slowly behind one of the hills in the distance from here. God, this place is perfect, I thought. We can really make this work.
J had disappeared back into the house, and I decided to follow him and check the place out. What was that sound? I looked up. Ooh, nice high ceilings! I grinned. Of course, that’s the first thing he would have installed here, a sound system to blast our precious country tunes. Perfect, no DIY renovation would be a success without music to speed the process. Where did he put the controls to this thing? Ah, he left his iPod on a small table in the corner. I put on an energetic Brad Paisley song and started singing along. J was right though, I thought looking around, most walls were damaged. Paint was peeling off, and you could look through the woodwork into the other room. “We’ll fix that too, no problem. Or maybe we leave it more open, to enjoy the flow of light throughout the house more” I thought. Oooh, even after being inside the house for such a short time, a rush of energy went through me. This really is full of potential. I felt a bit sad that J wasn’t able to look past the material damage, to see all the possibilities, how we were going to restore it. How happy we would be here when it was done. Oh well, that doesn’t matter now. As long as I can see it, that’s enough for now.
J had vanished, probably working in some distant wing. I went back outside to enjoy the last rays of the sun just before it disappeared behind the mountains. This was a view I could never be bored with.. There was a depth in the scenery that I hadn’t seen before. The further I looked, the lighter the mountains became, but the more hidden elements I discovered. There was something curious to look at everywhere you rested your eyes. Incredible. Magnificent. Suddenly, I bumped my toe on something hard. The ground was covered in crystal rocks. Light and dark purple amethysts, some amber colored crystals, rose quartz.. And one type that I hadn’t seen before. A gorgeous, deep blue color, tetragonal shape. Slightly see-through, like amethyst, but the deep blue color was darker at one end of the crystals, and faded into a more angelic light-blue on the other end. And they were all this pretty. We have to put these to use, … maybe the chandelier? I picked up the one that hurt my foot, and put in my pocket. It felt like having a piece of a fallen star from the midnight sky with me, reminding me of how small we are in this universe, but how beautiful at the same time.
The music now sounded over the grounds too. they were sad songs, no longer the upbeat playlist that I put on. As I walked in to change it back to my playlist, I smirked. Wanna play this game, love? I’ll keep playing the happy ones, until you’re ready to hear the love in them. Until you’re ready to hear how true the words of love in them are, until you’re ready to hear how much I love you. I’ll keep changing the songs, and you’ll be falling in love to the beat of the music before you know it.
The sun was completely behind the hills now. The valley was glowing; you could see the heat still lingering in the air after a perfect summer’s day. No clouds for miles, and the houses in the distance had a golden aura around them. I wish I brought my camera with me to capture the moment, but unfortunately, it was still in the trunk of J’s car. I decided to get to work. The crystals kept making me trip and stumble across the court yard, and I really needed to get to helping J renovate the house. I stepped on the low wall, and took a dive into flight. This is what I do best in my dreams, I fly like a bird. It feels more like swimming than flying, but the effect is the same. I am airborne again!
I flew around the house to try and grasp the size of the house that had been left to him. Wow. It really is big. Not that size matters, but man, this is impressive. Just like J.
Below the wall that was falling apart, was another little house that had probably served as a little worker’s cottage in the glory days of the mansion, maybe of a ground keeper living on the premises… It might be small but it was fully equipped with a kitchen, bathroom and separate bedroom. By flying over it, it was repaired. It was like a tornado had lifted the house from a black and white world and planted it in technicolor again – a video fast forwarded. I flew over a little garage adjacent to the small house. A big lump of polyester fabric drew my attention. As I lifted a small corner, the brown, weathered leather of an old convertible car revealed itself. This must be the Old Timer J’s been working on with B… Wow! The leather was dusty, and the frame of the convertible roof was a bit dented. Nothing my polishing hands couldn’t fix though. I caressed the leather with my bare hands, and put my cheek on the cool, cleaned surface and closed my eyes. This is what it felt like to be touched by his fingers, gliding gently down my face. I felt my skin tingle as I imagined his fingers trailing my jaw, the nail of his middle finger across my lips. It sent shivers down my spine.
I pressed a kiss on the side of the car, and continued my flight. I felt a light inside me sparkle, a kind of hope and trust that the renovation would succeed, and the building transformed under my wings. As I landed on my feet in the courtyard, I put the final touch to the project. Until now, the courtyard had been neglected by everybody. It needed some of it’s old grandeur back, needed to be inviting, so I removed the grassy overgrowth, leveled the surface by filling the rabbit wholes, and covered it with the crystals that had been lying on the ground in the first place. To prevent others from hurting themselves on it, they had been cut into smaller, gravel sized pieces.
The result left J speechless. To him, it was like a miracle had occurred, the impossible had been achieved. To me, I knew the rough diamond had been polished to make its true brilliance shine through. It was like coming home to J all over again.
Dream in the night of 21-8 to 22-8.