My Childhood Home Lays Deserted

And a chunk of my soul is infusing these walls.

Oren Cohen
4 min readAug 4, 2021


When I was a kid, I remember sitting at the dinner table one Friday afternoon and seeing a long orange tail wiggling in front of me from the other side of it. So, naturally, like any curious kid, I asked my mom, who was busy frying crispy Schnitzels, “mom, what’s that?” And I pointed at it.

Her gaze followed my finger, and then she screamed. A broom magically appeared in her hands, ready to extract the invading cat out of the house. It appeared then that my older brother — the sandwich one — had attracted another animal into our midst. He was like that when he was young. He even had a pet rabbit, and he called her Vanessa. He has a dog today, but he still had Jacko — his talking parrot — up to a couple of years ago.

Fast forward about twenty years.

I’m 33 years old and standing in front of this building I used to call home. I can barely recognize it. The name of the street, sure, it’s all still there. Even some of the neighbors we knew still live here.

But the house? The house is deserted. And it breaks my heart.

I moved a lot during my younger years. This house, though, was the first. It was the home I had the most memories in and the place that made me who I am.

My parents decided to sell it when both my brothers moved out, and it was only them and me on a two-floor home with two giant balconies just out of reach of the treetops surrounding it.

We used to have a lot of nightly visitors during our stay.

I remember one particular time when my mom asked me to help her bring something from the storage room we had on the balcony. As I was reaching to grab a box, suddenly I heard the door to the balcony slam. I looked behind me, and my mom was no longer there with me.

I came out of the balcony into the hallway, and she was there, wide-eyed. “Mom, why did you leave?” I asked.

“There’s a giant rat out there.”

“So you just left me with the rat?”

I still remind her that bit from time to time, and we laugh. But that laugh now stings, knowing that the house now stands deserted. Who knows what lives…



Oren Cohen

Software Engineer and Blogger. He/Him. Contact me: