It was a really nice Easter day to visit the house. The sky was blue and sunny. The temperature was fairly warm too. We showed the house off to a few relatives and I did two quick items on my to do list. Upon arrival we caught our neighbors peaking in the windows checking the place out, so it was nice to see them and wish ’em a Happy Easter as well.
Inside I replaced the smoke detector battery with a 10 year lasting lithium 9V battery. That should keep the thing from chirping for a while. For giggles the thing chirped a few times. Looking up I realized the battery compartment door wasn’t shut all the way, so with the help of my brother-in-law we carried the world’s largest A-frame ladder over and I clambered up to close the little hatch. Chirping gone. Happiness. I also cleaned the upper window in our bedroom which is accessible only by tall ladder. The ladder is still living in the room as the last item on my list for that area is touching up the ceiling where the drywallers neglected to do so….there are two spots where you can see raw drywall and not the white stuff that normally goes on the ceiling.
After my work was done I jumped outside to join everyone in the warm sun. I’ll admit showing up earlier when we arrived and seeing all those people, kind of turned me off a bit. I remember when I was out there the day before on Saturday I sat in the Rabbit in the driveway, once again with a nice sunny day overhead, and didn’t want to move. I enjoyed looking out the window contemplating how long I could sit there….an hour, a day, a week…..before anyone really came looking for me. Being there today with all those people felt like I had to let them in on a little secret. Or rather let them in on my secret place. Sure the mousey cute brunette and the two blonde kids could come and go as they please since it was their place too, but at this point it take some getting used to having other people there. That’s what a lot of quiet afternoons being out there by myself has gotten me. I’m fairly civil, but at first blush deep down inside I’m not overly thrilled that I’m not alone out there. Which is at odds cause I really want to share how great a place it is or will be. It’ll take some begrudging getting used to. It’s the primary reason I’m generally done with having people work on the house. They’ve taken all our money, and generated a generally tolerable structure. Now what I am desperately required to do, for my sanity, is move all our crap in there and start tailoring the experience to our needs.
I sat in that damn car for the better part of fifteen minutes not wanting to move. Not wanting to empty it cause it’d mean I had to go home to the other place. I guess the new place will change into its own interpretation of the other place, and lose some of what I’ve grown attached to. Regardless, at this point I defend what we have together deep down inside of me. I know every single thing that is wrong with the new place, and every single thing that is right. I’ve examined every square inch of her inside and out. And in my mind’s eye I know exactly what she’ll look like, in a general sense, for every year forward as long as I am on this side of the horizon. Where trees will go, bushes, swings, etcetera. It takes all the strength I have to not put up a motorized gate or set all the remaining tools and supplies out on the curb so to speak. But with age comes wisdom and patience. While I have little of both, I do try harder than most at times.
So it was with a dash of self-induced patience, and a large dose of house induced pride that I rambled the front yard showing up imagined grassy lawns, gravel walkways, and yet to be seen planting beds to our family. Looking up from the southwest the sun shone off her metal roof turning it ablaze in molten silver. As I traced a path east I was stricken by her sexy horizontal continuous gutter line, stretching what seemed to be hundreds of feet. Her simple, yet stylistic roof punctuated by the loft artfully perched atop. Looking for all the world like another generation’s train station. The thought of putting in faux tracks in the front yard crossed my mind, ever so briefly. Probably for the first time I really take in the south face of the house, the face you see at the header of this page. We discussed house color (she still remains unpainted, awaiting Ohio to stop her Spring tease of alternating warm and frosty days) as I walked towards the east side. My path through the dusty “yard” ends at the base of a small cherry tree we are attempting to save near the cistern. For the all the world it looks dead but the small brownish sprouts in its feeble crown betray its April dreams. I pluck a dangling dead branch from it and look back at the house. Glad to see clusters of people enjoying the yard, even in its trampled nonsensical state; oblivious to the house and the energy it gives off. At least consciously they are oblivious I’m sure. Subconsciously maybe not, but that is of no consequence on this day. I can hear the traffic from the highway in the distance and it reminds me of the world out there that I have to go back to.
Regretfully for me, we gather ourselves up and head back to the cars. Maybe there’s something else I need to do, or something I forgot, but my patience gets the best of me and I join everyone, saying kind goodbyes and departing. There is much left to do that , as I turn the car around to leave, it does sting a bit to look at her and the remnants of what is left to do and that which never got done. All that means is more delays and more interruptions. Like buying a new car and not being able to drive it because the dealer has to fix a headlight, so it sits in the shop. But soon enough she’ll be all ours.