One remembered place for me is, without a doubt, my father's workplace. Each of the numerous times my dad brought me and my brother to the building where he spent the daylight hours working, I was always brimming with anticipation as I eagerly looked forward to the time I would spend there. My dad is a financial advisor and his workplace, situated on a common junction of two busy streets in a commonly modern city, is a fairly petite building, though I remember that it used to seem several times bigger. I loved how every time I entered it felt like I was stepping into an entirely different world, a quiet and cozy dimension completely cut off from the annoying noise of hurrying traffic and monotonous life. There was a humongous fish tank in the reception area where there were also soft, homey sofas and a crouching coffee table surrounded by green plants with long fern-like leaves that filled the room with a soothing atmosphere. The presence the room held was like that of a jungle, except much greyer and not so wild. Instead of sweet-smelling earth there was rough carpet that smelled of cleansing agent, and instead of pale rays of sunlight like that of an angel the room was illuminated by the weak and bright yellow of long lasting bulbs. I was extremely shy as a child and hardly spoke, only smiling when the young receptionist, who was so nice, greeted me. That formal ambience was a part of a world that I was so unused to, yet it provided a distant feeling that I could take comfort in.
Beyond the reception was a corridor that led to a small kitchen, washrooms and employee offices. In the other direction was another corridor, perpendicular to the first one, which escorted various persons to many work cubicles, some of which were stationed opposite another row of private offices. To the delight of my adventurous self, the place was a maze that you couldn't get lost in.
One of the private offices belonged to my father, and looking up at the metal nameplate on his door, I would feel a surge of pride every time I visited. My dad has his own office. That silly, simple thought was probably the source of my feelings. My dad's office's interior was small, but I liked it anyway because it was filled with, to me, objects and furniture that made me feel like I was a part of this world that my father knew. My dad's usual seat was located behind a long, wooden work desk with edges that bended and curved like waves. A computer, printer, and all sorts of other office equipment were placed near him behind the table. Sitting in his professional spot pretending that I was in charge and playing games on the computer was one of my hobbies when he left his office to do chores in other parts of the building. Across the table from his chair was where my brother and I claimed our seats, normally reserved for my dad's clients, backpacks stuffed with homework and other things to do sitting at our feet.
The backs of our chairs faced the same outer wall of the office where the door was. It was a wide windowed wall, where above the concrete ledge was a pane of glass that spanned the rest of the wall. Patterns of frosted glass partly obscured the vision of passersby, like a white puff of chilled North Pole air. That wall was a source of thrill for me, for it almost felt like I was playing a silent game of hide and seek when other adults walked by.
Behind the hefty grey door were my dad's file cabinets, from which I took joy in sliding open and close the loaded shelves. Because they were made of metal, I had a lot of fun amusing myself by throwing soft magnets from afar, trying to get them to stick with a 'slap' in one shot.
My favourite time at my father's workplace was probably snack time. Next to his cabinets my dad kept a normal, tall wooden cupboard, but to me it was a treasure trove. It was so exciting when my dad would reveal the contents of the hidden shelves. My brother and I savoured our rice crackers and took delight in the mini juice boxes that we brought.
We often passed the time by doing homework or making each other laugh by creating otherworldly drawings on scraps of what others took to be useless sheets of paper but we thought were worthy to be the foundation of our word games. The times that, while swinging my dangling legs, my toes struck the hollow base of the desk, my dad would frown and my brother and I giggled sheepishly at the booming echo that resounded through the cave-like office from my less than powerful kick. I also found fun in going to the pantry and helping my dad refill his paper cup of tea or water for him. It felt like an adventure every time I ran an errand because I got to wander around the building by myself, quiet but keenly observant like a creeping mouse. The office was like a secure safe house or secret base that no one but my dad, brother and I knew of. The things that went on throughout those days stayed there at the end of the day. Just like how my dad would lock his office in the evenings, our special moments, taking shape of a perfect fit of a key to its lock, would forever remain embedded in time and space long after we are gone.
This place to me is irreplaceable, for the times I spent there in my childhood have created in me a place where memories gather, a place where my mind can escape to, a place where I can reminisce while soaked in nostalgia. Though the greatness of a plain office may have been conjured up as an illusion through the heartwarming happiness I received from the simple moments I experienced there, and though through others' eyes it may be something far from special, to me it's much more than just ordinary. It's an unforgettable ordinary.
A/N: This is just a little piece of free write that I did in my free time. I meant to make it descriptive, but it would appear that I failed to do that at multiple spots throughout... Ah well, thanks for reading, and review as you please.