Thursday, May 28, 2009

Front Porch

When one of my girls was a teenager, she and a friend's daughter would tease my friend and me about the days when we were their ages. Their favorite comment was that she and I spent our time sitting on the porch, sipping lemonade. None of that was true, but what they were saying, without saying it, was that we were old and old-fashioned. My family didn't have a porch on our house. My friend's family did, but I don't think we spent even one moment sitting on it.

Now, we have a lovely front porch. We enjoy sitting out there with our morning coffee. Beneath the roof that shelters us from the sun, we might be found wiling the hours away in conversation. We watch the weather, we remark at the skies, we listen to the thunder, and we enjoy the sound of the rain. In the evenings, we relish the cool breeze and the viewing of the twinkling stars. While the neighbors come and go, we stay put, and we wave to the strangers who drive down our street, circling at the cul de sac where we're located. One of our neighbors is said to have bought the house two doors away because we waved when they came to view the home!

When we first moved here and the subdivision was new, neighbors would stop by and sit with us on the front porch, each of us learning about each other. That has slowed down a bit these days, as everyone knows everyone else now, and we're all sort of settled in. We do have visitors often, however, and we spend time on the porch, talking with each guest about world and local events, church, or whatever topic happens to come up. There is a group of men who will often gather at our porch when Mike goes out with his coffee. I've nicknamed them 'the Man Clan'. Sometimes they stay a short time, sometimes a good while, sharing the military stories or the latest political happening.

There is little to say except positive things about a front porch. However, if the weather is muggy, the gnats and flies appear. That is an unpleasantry, for certain. One other thing that some might consider a detriment is the gathering of folks who stay a bit too long, keeping us from accomplishing one of those items on the 'honey do list.' On the other hand, we think it's wonderful that people come to share our day with us and that they are as comfortable on our porch as we are. Unless we have an appointment that must be met, we don't worry much about how long they stay. We enjoy their visits.

It may have been an old-fashioned idea to my daughter once, to sit on a porch and chat with a friend over a cool glass of lemonade or iced tea, but I've noticed that she has grown up to appreciate the porch as much as we do. There is hope that our younger generations will come to know the pleasures of such wonderful old-time things!