One thing I love about our old house is its wooden screen doors. There are five on our house. Before you enter through the front door, you must first open that welcoming screen door.
No, it doesn’t have a sliding glass part that would allow the front door to be left open for natural light on a cool day, but it does the trick of letting a breeze in and keeping bugs out. It’s old fashion, and that’s probably why I like it. I even like the thump sound it makes when it shuts against the wooden frame.
The three doors on our big screened-in porch actually have simple hook latches and screen door pulls as handles, although the front and downstairs screen doors have turn knobs.
When the house is opened up in that too short period between heating and air conditioning, I find myself gazing at that front screen door, smelling the fragrance of the outside flowers, and just smiling with contentment. This is our home, and we can shut the world out or we can appreciate it through that screen door.
Is it a memory from childhood that surfaces when I hear the thud of the door shutting and feel the breeze? Likely it is.
I know everyone didn’t have ideal childhoods, but my memory is of long summer days in our small Arkansas town and our relatives and neighbors calling through the screen door, “Anybody home?” and walking in before waiting for an answer. My family moved to Missouri when I was in fourth grade, and our new house had an aluminum storm door with a big B for Boyd in the decorative scroll. Those were also good days, but the memory of the storm door doesn’t bring a nostalgic feel.
We all have items in our homes that remind us of uncomplicated times, when our young minds were not concerned with health issues or what to fix for supper or a civil war across the ocean. I felt unbounded energy, ate what was put before me at meal time, and certainly didn’t waste time on the news. Our screen doors just take me back in time. What in your home reminds you of simpler times?