As we walked back from the bathroom towards the office, we meandered through doorways and past panels that were set up on saw horses, waiting for their first coat of spray. Baby E held onto my finger, tighter than normal, as his eyes darted around, trying to absorb his very busy environment. A metal door slammed behind us and I felt his little body jump. I looked down as he regained his footing. Across the shop a spray booth kicked in, sending a roar through the warehouse and Baby E jumped again. By now he was worried, the noises approaching from every direction. About twenty feet away, someone turned on an air gun to clean off the dust on a panel that had accumulated from the sanding process, but this was one loud noise too many for Baby E. His body trembled and he started to scream. I scooped him up and carried him the rest of the way.
I mused as I comforted him that the very noises that had startled him were the same noises that brought my childhood flooding back to my memory in a rush of nostalgia. The sound of the spray booth is comforting, a constant hum that permeated a great deal of my early years. The air gun reminded me of the hours my sister and I spent playing with it, watching how the rush of air would toss our clothing or distort our faces as we pointed it at each other.
Our childhood was unusual. I’m so glad that it was.
I’ve spent a week with my parents. One day I made a brief stop at the shop. While it is not the same building as when I was a child, it smelled the same and it sounded the same. In a strange way, it feels a little like home.
As I type, my loves are driving. They’ve been driving the better part of the day, but will have to stop to sleep and continue in the morning. By this time tomorrow my sweet children should be sleeping under the same roof again, and I might find myself staring at them, wondering how they grew so much in just one week.
I can’t wait. I’ve missed them terribly!
Happy Birthday, my love!