A Place of Consistency

By: sunshine



A Place
of Consistency


The heavy wooden sliding door waits, with paint chipping, on its old metal runners. So many childhood memories of work and play seem to be written on its worn surface, telling stories of the past 11 years of my life. I push the door open and my hands are greeted by the antique texture of the wood as it creaks to the side. The pungent yet welcoming smell of hay, goats, and horses drifts around me as I enter the hay filled room. It is such a cozy place, and I could easily imagine myself in one of the Little House on the Prairie books as I gaze up at the wooden walls and the golden hay bales.

                  Hundreds of hay bales sit stacked in tidy rows reaching high above my head. The floor is cushioned by a thick bed of loose hay, into which my black work boots sink slightly with every step. A chicken scurries past my rubber boots to scratch in the corner in search of bugs. Dirty cobwebs cling to the ceiling and corners, adding to the old fashioned atmosphere of the barn. Snickers, the barn cat, observes me from her throne on the dusty window sill.

                  The comforting sunlight spreads into the barn through the open door. I reach out my arms to its rays in the dust, relishing its warmth. My moment of quiet enjoyment is interrupted as my dog dances in and pokes her cold, impatient nose under my hand. I bend down to scratch her silky smooth ears and she cocks her head to the side and groans in her funny way, making me laugh. Suddenly she freezes, her nose in the air, then dashes to the hay bales. In one bound she is at the top of the stack, intent on her hunt for a mouse. Outside, the goats start up their chorus of bleats, reminding me that it is time to get back to work.

Although my life and my world around me is always changing, the barn is always consistent. The same animal smells and sounds, the same cushion of hay beneath my feet, the same solid walls. It is not perfect, or new, or glamorous. It is not a summer home on the beach, but it is my special place that will never change. As I get older, my life will become more complicated and demanding. In these times, I will always be able to go to the barn and feel like a little girl again, gazing up at the wooden walls and golden hay bales in my little country world.




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