Tuesday, November 6, 2007


There is a house on 79th Street, right before Ridge Avenue that stands apart from it's neighbors. This particular block is lacking in Mafia Mansions. It has nice "little" houses (huge for Brooklyn, but you might find them small). Anyway, the home that stands out has a small glass house in their side yard. This little house is too small for people to be in (unless hunched over) and too big for dogs. There are Christmas lights along the frame of the glass house bringing it attention and lighting up the scene inside. Inside is a replica of the island of Crete. There are tiny houses, churches, trees and little street lights that light up the winding roads. The ocean around the island has waves and ripples. Maybe a few boats too. It's quite elaborate.

When I walk by this house, I feel a connection to the people inside. I think that they miss Crete. I think they want to remind their family and neighbors from Crete what it looks like and teach their children about their homeland. I imagine, these were their goals when they began the project.

Now, I think their experience of being a stranger in a strange land is much more profound than mine has been. I think their longing and missing and wanting to reconnect with their roots is more serious than what I experience. But, I do think that I have dabbled enough in those feelings of missing the place that feels like home that I slow down, peer inside and show respect for their little glass house. I feel like I have had a hint of what drove them to make that recreation in the first place.

I guess I find it interesting that these life experiences that get chucked at us are often points of connection to other people. People that you might not otherwise have anything else in common with.

I love connection. I love feeling like I understand and feeling like I am understood.

You know?


thedanceofthegates said...

I agree. I think this is the only reason people read depressing blogs like mine. ;)

Susan said...

I, for example, feel total connection to Andrew when I see that picture of him gazing at the cookie jar.

Anonymous said...

Robyn, where are your roots?-I am talking geography. I would like to walk your neighborhood. I walk for 30min and do not see a house.

Robyn said...

Hey Mom. At least, I think you are mom. ;)

Good question. I think of my roots as small town New England. I feel at home there, sort of understand the people and the layout and even the history a bit. I think it is interesting that all your kids put down roots near their college. Tara in the suburban west and Chuck in the small town/suburban mid-atlantic area. I guess college years are pretty formative.