I have posted this topic in my group as well. I reread it today and it feels as if something missing.
I have repeated "I remembered" quite a few times. I need some help with this.
My memories, will I still have them as I grow older?
I remembered living with my maternal grandmother for a while in Llanadas Isabela Puerto Rico along with my brothers, mom, two aunts and my two cousins.
My mother was pregnant with my youngest brother at the time and gave birth to him in Arecibo. I remembered the smell and feel of the wooden house with little knot holes you can peek through and lots of land surrounding it. There were about three or four steps in front of the house where I used to sit and daydream. I remembered the doors and windows made out of wood and how we would remove the wooden bar and swing them wide open in the mornings and closed them at night with a wooden board across it. I also remembered the tin roof and how the rain sounded on the tin roof when it rained and how we collected the rain water that lead from the roof into a barrel. The Kitchen sink was outside the window where you can enjoy the view as you were washing the dishes, I loved the water pump.
There was a big porch with two swings for us to swing on. We had quite a few arguments as to who would be the first to swing on them, many times rushing outdoors to be the first to get to them. Everything there was so different compared to living in New York. So much open space, the world outside was an opened playground full of fruit trees, flowers, plants and vegetables for us to eat, investigate and explore. What did I not like about living in Puerto Rico as a child?
The outhouse, oh how I dreaded that smell and the dark hole which I feared so much. I always felt that something deep from the bottom of that pit was going to reach up to grab me and dragged me in and that I was never going to be seen again!
What did I love the most? The food tasted great, many grown from the family , the hand and rooster shaped lollipops, arroz con leche(rice and milk porridge), eating queso con pan(cheese and bread) in the mornings and drinking fresh milk from my paternal grandfather's farm, the fresh aroma of coffee brewing from coffee beans grown from my maternal family, the sky so beautiful and blue, watching the fireflies at night and at times collecting them to observed them closely and the releasing them, the sounds of the coqui singing their songs at night putting me to sleep and the sounds of the rooster waking me in the mornings. I remembered chewing on raw sugar cane grown by my paternal grandfather and sucking the juice from it and the cavities and toothache pain that came a few years later.
What did I love best of all? Being surrounded by my loving family members and many cousins to play with, oh how I missed those younger years.
Will I still remember this as I grow older? I hope so!
One thing missing for me is a deeper comparison of the openness in Puerto Rico compared with city life in New York. You mention New York in passing, so that its brief appearance and lack of detail make it seem unimportant to your story. A few more impressions of how the two places in your life differed might add something to the story. What was New York like? How did you feel living there as compared to living in PR? Obviously, your memories of PR are wonderful ones, despite what appears to be a level of poverty. There you seemed to have felt rich, indeed, in the openness, the naturalness of farm life, the fresh crops you speak of, and the love of your family.
The way in which you describe the physical surroundings in PR, which to me does speak of poverty on one level of understanding, shows that you did feel rich. To you, it was a wonderland, and it makes us look at the situation with a different perspective. Good job!