A Sparkling Vintage Life


“Arriving Home” by Newell Wyeth

I love how this painting expresses the sheer joy and relief of coming home at the end of a long, hard day. I imagine the man has ridden the 5:42 home from the city and has just said “So long” to his fellow commuters across the street. He’ll see them in the morning. Until then, his time is his own.

I love how the late-afternoon sun warms their faces, and sense a refreshing breeze carrying the mossy scent of fresh-mown grass. Even Fido is happy to be reunited. The wife looks so fresh and pretty. Maybe she changed her dress, to look and feel better after a warm day of work. I’ll bet there’s something tasty simmering on the stove, and a quiet evening ahead after the dishes are done. Maybe a little gardening while it’s still light out, a cool drink on the back porch to watch the sun go down, a glance at the evening paper. She’ll ask about his day, tell him about hers. Nobody’s snapping in fatigue. Nobody’s whining or complaining.  In this moment, they’re just happy to be together.

I’m reminded of the lyrics to “The Fever” by Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes:

“I can remember comin’ home
I see you standin’ at the stove
With the dishes on the table
Dinner ready to go
Or maybe on out to a movie show
Something that you’d like to see”

or “Summer Breeze” by  Seals and Crofts:

“Sweet days of summer, the jasmine’s in bloom. July is dressed up and playing her tune.
And I come home from a hard day’s work, and you’re waiting there, not a care in the world.
See the smile a-waitin’ in the kitchen, food cookin’ and the plates for two.
Feel the arms that reach out to hold me, in the evening when the day is through.
Summer breeze, makes me feel fine, blowing through the jasmine in my mind.”

Tomorrow will be another day, another train ride, bosses, customers, paperwork, hassles. Housecleaning, laundry, cooking, weeding. But tonight . . . tonight is simply bliss.

What are some ways that you can make coming-home time more pleasant at your house?