My childhood home was a bungalow, painted white with arches, near the banks of River Jhelum. It was our first home with father after mother’s death. Three of us lived there with father, though he was mostly absent from home. Our cook, and a maid cared for us.
In front was a formal garden. On the left side of the house was a wide dome structure. This housed a deep underground well, to which you could go down on stairs. On the right side of the house was an orchard and vegetable garden. At the back were trees more than a century old.
Fron one of the tree’s branch hung my swing. I could swing very high, almost as high as the roofs of our home. It was dizzying and dangerous, but who cared to scold me, and look at what I was up to.
Lala (elder brother) would swim in the nearby river, though he never allowed me. It wasn’t safe, because one day he was caught in the swirling currents, and would have drowned if not for our cook who saved him.
Silence reigned our home. Having no parental supervision Lala used to be out with friends. I was the only one at home. My younger brother was sent to our paternal grandma. He would follow any woman crying Mor (means mother). One day we almost lost him.
Books were my friends then, and they still are.
What are the earliest memories of the place you lived in as a child? Describe your house. What did it look like? How did it smell? What did it sound like? Was it quiet like a library, or full of the noise of life? Tell us all about it, in as much detail as you can recall.