|Photo credit Sindre Skrede|
Every weekday morning I drive by the yellow house on the hill. I can tell by its architecture that it has been there for a long, long time but I only just noticed it. Stuck in paused freeway traffic, I take the moment to look around myself. There in the distance it catches my eye, a striking yellow sunrise against the backdrop of a green mountain. Two stories high, flat glassy windows staring into the void of the city below it. I know this house. And I don’t know why.
There must be a road that leads there. I try to glance towards the yellow house as I round the freeway bend. The morning sunrise has turned the windows into solid mirrors, shields refusing the passage of light. Now I imagine the house as a sentry or knight, but what it is guarding I do not know. I had dreamed of the yellow house all night, lost within its catacombs I could neither solve or identify. At work I am distracted, trying to grasp in my mind how the roads connect to lead me to that place.
I leave early for my commute so I can do some exploring. It was a part of the city that I had never needed to visit before. But now I needed to find this yellow house and its glass shields. I kept seeing glimpses of it through the trees or several streets over, so close yet I still can’t reach it. I drive for an hour before I turn back, already late to work. That day I scour maps online but still cannot pinpoint the address or location of the yellow house. A heavy rainstorm falls that evening, the heavy torrents playing like a lullaby with my fitful sleep.
I call in sick to work and it is not far from the truth. My stomach is boiling with nerves and old dreams. The images are stuck in my mind and I cannot process or forget them. I decide to walk to the yellow house, parking several streets away. I am a specter in the early morning twilight, lumbering over fences and through rhododendron bushes. The petrichor from last night’s rain storm burns in my nose, heavy and aromatic. Finally I reach the yellow house and feel the reality of its presence as it looms above me. I grasp the chipped metal knob of the front door and turn it, entering inside.
I awake in the morning with a start. It is minutes after my alarm should have gone off, I cannot figure out why I didn’t set it the night before. I rush to get myself together and run out the door, coffee in hand. I never know what I could encounter on my commute and this morning, there is an accident. As I sit in my car, I admire the sunrise and look in the distance. There is a yellow house on the nearby hill. I can tell by its architecture that it has been there for a long, long time but I only just noticed it. I know this house. And I don’t know why.