It was a thanksgiving long weekend and my cousin’s family had come over for some turkey. I was hugging and greeting them with a humongous smile on my face as though I hadn’t seen them in ages. Although we live close by, we never got to see each other, due to lack of time. My cousin, Sally, came and said hello, “Lucia! We finally meet again!” This was her way of salutation. She jumped up and down with her brother cheerfully. Once she had told me that coming and visiting me was the best thing in the world, and, interestingly enough, I didn’t have any other choice but to hide how I felt the opposite. Inspiration is sometimes derived from surprising sources. I didn’t actually hate her, I just couldn’t stand her. She was always a sign of perfection though it was not always in educational ways. Her hair was always perfectly tied back into a pony tail with pretty ribbons that her mother, my aunt makes. She was short for a thirteen year old, however she did not have any complex about it; I think it was her general optimism.
While Sally and her brother were watching a movie downstairs, I helped out in the kitchen with dinner. I have to admit, making dinner for thanksgiving is not easy or simple. My job was to set the table and bring the dishes over, when the dinner was ready. I called my cousins down stairs instead of actually going down and bringing them up. My mother already warned me about it, but I could not help my indolence. Sally and her brother came up and we were all seated at the table. As we were eating, Sally spoke, “It’s so nice to get together once in a while and eat with everybody like this, it makes me so content!” I knew that she used a variety of words, but don’t children usually say ‘happy’ instead of ‘content’? Sometimes I wonder if she actually thinks of what she is going to say, and repeats it several times in her head before saying them out loud.
It was nearly eight o’clock and I was in the kitchen once again, however, this time, I was putting the dishes in the dish washer. Then, my mother told me that I could go downstairs and keep my cousin company. I nodded at her and went down the stairs two at a time. At the bottom, there she was, staring at the door to our recreation room. I asked her what she was doing and after a moment of brief pause, she asked pointing at the door, “Does this mean anything specific to you?”
To tell the truth, I had no idea what she was talking about so I just answered her without actually giving at least a bit of a thought to it. “It’s an object that allows me to enter a room of any kind?” There was a slight tone of sarcasm mixed in my voice, which I think she ignored. This time, Sally opened and then closed the door. She asked me if I ever thought about how my whole life could change because of a single door that does not appear to be too important to anybody. She also said that when we come to think about it, ‘door’ could mean something very profound. “You know,” she continued, “It could mean something.” Now she had all my attention as she added. “Maybe it’s a door to your future, or for some people, it could be a door to their freedom.” At first, I thought she was joking because, I mean, what she was really trying to say was it was like a door to a fantasy land, was it not? But when I looked her in the eyes, I quickly wiped off the silly smile on my face because I realized that she was being sincere. The next thing I knew, I was looking at her as if I could not believe the words that were coming out of her mouth; I knew that she was clever, diligent and reflective, but I did not know that she gave a lot of thought to simple objects around her. Things that people do not usually pay any attention to, such as a door.
I asked her if there was anything that she was waiting for or expecting from the door, and if she were how she could know what’s coming or what’s really behind it. I tried to make myself sound logical, but I don’t think I did a very good job of it. And her next few words left me standing speechless with my feet glued to the floor.
“That’s the thing Lucia, you DON’T know what’s behind the door. All you do, all you can do, is to wait till you open it and see it for your-self.” Her fixed smile on her sweet little face made me think of just one thing: how can a thirteen year old girl think of such a thing? I just hope that she sticks to her opinions, just like how she has been, as always. My young cousin, whom I’ve never thought of admiring, not even a single day in my life, made me realize deeper significance of an object we see every day. Because of her precocious thought towards a door, I now view the world in a completely different way.