Funny how even the smallest details can make a difference. Like a tiny pebble falling into a still pond, everything can change. Yes, everything can change; more than anyone can imagine. If you, who every you may be, are planning to ask me why I, of all people am saying this, I will tell you.
As I go back to the place in my mind, I can’t help but remember everything being so clear. My father leaving the hotel to go to a meeting and my mother, little sisters, and I deciding to explore the place in which we had arrived. My mother peered out the window as she looked at the rather mundane scenery. Ashley was lying on the bed as she held her ear, which seemed to irritate her. Laura, my other younger sister, sat down next to her and watched her with concerned eyes. Grabbing her purse, my mother and the three of us walked out of the hotel room and went down to the lobby. Oh, how I remember her asking the concierge how to get to the nearest hospital. Ashley, with eyes full of curiosity, regarded the rather large hotel as my mother was given a map that had short cuts to the hospital.
As we got off of the subway, my mom opened the wrinkled map and found the new direction we needed to go to find the hospital. Walking towards the hospital, which was just a few feet away now, I remember seeing my mother bend down to find blood on my little sister’s ear. As I saw the blood, I felt uneasy; was she going to be fine?
A few days later after the surgery to remove her tonsils my parents told the doctors we needed to leave the hospital, because we had to go to Austria. Even today, when I think of how the doctors had said she needed to get her tonsils removed, I don’t understand how that had to with a damned ear. Nevertheless, the doctors sighed and gave us their consent. Despite the doctors warning us of complications, like coughing and having anything with acid, we left for Vienna, Austria.
Everything was fine. My sister couldn’t speak or have juice due to the surgery while she rested in the new hotel room’s bed. My mother would watch my little sister while my father would take me and my little sister to see Vienna. There were exceptions of course, like when our whole family visited an empty ballroom and my father taught me how to “waltz” as he counted in the time signature of 3 3. I remember how my father brought me one night to the ballroom to find it alive. I remember how it had sparked to life with the crystal chandelier on the ceiling and the ensemble playing Mozart. I even remember watching the cello play and the people surrounding me, getting up to waltz. Yes, Austria, was an amazing place; one that would always be close in my heart.
A few nights later, I remember hearing Ashley cough. As I heard the sound continue, I heard the sound of the sink in the bathroom turn on. As I got out of my bed to see what was going on, I heard my father screaming for my mother to get up. Red blood oozed down my little sister’s mouth, her eyes were bulging, and her face was turning from red to purple; she was choking. My eyes traced the bright red blood that stained the white marble sink counter and the clean floor. I ran to wake my mother, and my parents quickly rushed to the nearest hospital in Vienna. I remember looking at the sink that was now stained with a dry dark brownish red blood, as I waited for the news.
Oh yes, Austria is a place that will always be in my heart. It’s buildings, light music, and the blood have forever stained my memory.