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THE OLD SPANISH HOUSE



I felt rather sad as I stood looking at the old Spanish-style house, a run down, old building only two or three blocks from the orphanage where I was raised as a child. It was an abandoned building that was our home away from home, a place that we would go when we kids ran away from the orphanage. I was surprised when I heard a dog bark from inside the house as I walked up the front sidewalk. I could hardly believe that someone was now living there. Although 50 years had passed, it still looked as run down and ragged as it did when I was a little kid.

Oh, the stories that could be told. Tales that are now and will forever be held inside the walls of the old ‘Spanish house.’ Eight and 9-year-old boys all smoking cigarettes, talking ‘rock-n-roll’ and acting as though we knew what little girls were all about. The tears of many a little boy were shed on the floor of this Spanish house. Many terrible stories exposing and discussing the horrors of being molested night after night by matrons and their spouses. Little broken hearts that would never be repaired. Little boy dreams that would never come true.

In spite of all the horrors that this house held, I was glad and proud to be standing before it. It was good for me to return. It was good for me to be reminded that I was once a young boy - a boy with many hopes and dreams.

I walked back to my truck, took out a copy of my book and autographed it. Then I walked up to the ‘old Spanish house’ and knocked on the front door. Again, the dog started barking, but no one answered the door. I laid the book down on the front step and walked away.

I have known very few houses, which were in as bad a shape as is the old Spanish house. I hope who ever lives there will read my book and that they realize that where they now live was once upon a time, a haven for many young boys. Innocent children who were living in hell, just around the corner from the old Spanish house.



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