Saturday, September 25, 2010

More Home

This was my entry way before. A shelf with shoes, since my shoes live by the door, and a basket for hats and gloves, and a thing on top for mail and apparently haphazardly thrown shirts. Lots of white. And the shelf was kind of dirty from having shoes on it all the time. I've been on the hunt for something to go there to hold shoes and coats and things, and not look messy. I thought about one of those large one piece things that has a bench/trunk, with hooks and a mail slot, but couldn't find one that suited me.
I was in my favorite consignment shop that has nice things at good prices and very high turnover (so if I don't find the perfect thing one day, I might the next) and I spotted this beauty. And I thought - shoes! hats! Perfect size! It had no middle shelf, but it did have pegs for a shelf, so I stopped at the lumber yard on the way home for a piece of wood (there would be no "oh, I'll just pile the shoes in there until I get around to finding some wood. There would also be no $8/foot cedar. Yet. This was $1.20/foot pine.)
Winter goods!
And here she is in all her glory. Looking much more elegant and refined. The big white shelf will be going to the "Boutique" at the dump tomorrow so some lucky family can find her and take her home and maybe paint her and put fun things on her.

And, this area of the house is the "career" area according to the feng shui bagua. I think the change was a good one.

I love pretty things.

And I write now. And I walk (two miles this evening.) And I bought a plant. And finally found the weird little light bulbs I needed for the stove, so all the lights in the house work. I am so at peace here. It makes me realize how living in the wrong place with the wrong energy for so long can almost crush your soul. And how a soul can store up all the good stuff it wants to do and wait until it's safe, and all the good stuff will be waiting when you are ready for it.

Monday, September 20, 2010


From every little corner the message is coming "keep writing." From other people comes the message "don't stop." And so I will write and keep writing. And I will walk and keep walking.

I had my artist's retreat this weekend that I wanted. I wrote. I made a reading corner in the window where I sat and read. I wrote more. I went to the farmer's market. I walked in the dark. I made my goals book. I realized there is a book living inside me that is bursting to get out. I started writing that book. I wrote other stuff.

It's funny how living in the wrong place can suffocate so much out of you that you don't realize was there, gasphing for air, until you are gone. And it can come into the light and the space and breathe.

(And thank you thank you to my readers.)

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Something there is that loves a walk

I walk now. Two miles this morning. 3.7 this afternoon. By the beach, through the village, under the pines, around the Common, past the people who exclaim "what a day!" as we scoot out of the way of the cars on the too narrow roads.

And I write. Sometimes I write about how I have nothing to write about. Sometimes I write character sketches based off prompts from snarky emails I send to a friend about a photo on Facebook and I think "Oh, that's the beginning of a story!"
She had those same eyelashes in high school. The kind that can only be obtained by applying 5 coats of mascara and then pinching to make 7 large lashes.
Can't you see the story?

There has not been any napping as of yet, or trying out of the tub, or finding floor pillows or reupholstering or retrieving of the yoga mat.

There is too much to see to nap. But I found a beach that looks like the perfect place for a nap on a sunny winter's day when no one else is there. We could see about yoga tomorrow. My legs want to stretch.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

My Plans

Here is what I can choose from this weekend, the first in many during which I am not putting things into boxes, taking things out of boxes, carrying boxes up, hauling junk out or hiking up and down somewhere:

Having an artist's retreat in my home, which could consist of reading, writing (with prompts perhaps), putting up poetry in frames as art, walking around outside, drawing and making an effort not to drive anywhere except the bank to put some checks in. And going to the little cafe for coffee and maybe french toast.

Reupholstering a chair. Or at least making a muslin for the eventual reupholsterment. Or putting the new fabric over the old to see what it looks like.

Lots of napping (which I usually just think about rather than do, but it's nice to think about.)

Bring the yoga mat in from the car, roll it out and see what happens.

Go buy some large floor pillows for my reading nooks.

Try out the jacuzzi tub.

Finish the song I started writing last night. It's mostly done, except I have the word "across" in there twice, so one needs to go.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Not Settling Can Be Unsettling

For a long time, I settled. I don't know why. Maybe I was too tired to fight for what I wanted. Maybe I thought I had to fight for what I wanted. So I just took what little scraps I found, not daring to look past them for more. The thought of not settling felt unsettling.

Like all the mud on the bottom of a pond would get stirred up. Even if it should be in order to get rid of the tires, grocery carts and rocks under there.

But this move to my lovely new space was not settling for anything. It was daring to want it. Doing the things I needed to do to get it. And getting it. And being here. And feeling amazing and free.

And feeling settled.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

I'm Home

I am truly home. In beautiful space. In a beautiful town. And at long last with the ocean once again 50 feet from my door.

I grew up above the ocean. Barely 8 feet of yard, a climbable cliff and a sea wall separated us all of my childhood years. I went to sleep to the faint sound of the waves crashing and woke up to the murmured shouts of the sea-mossers. I spent my summers running along the sea wall burning my feet on the hot boulders and swimming out to the "Big Rock" with my father. My bed was in a corner of the house that was all windows, and it was high, so I felt like I was on a boat. My soul grew out into that space to the horizon.

And when I left, my soul felt crowded. I felt like Edna must have when she wrote "Inland"

PEOPLE that build their houses inland,
People that buy a plot of ground
Shaped like a house and build a house there,
Far from the seaboard, far from the sound
Of water sucking the hollow ledges, 5
Tons of water striking the shore,
What do they long for, as I long for
One salt smell of the sea once more?

People the waves have not awakened,
Spanking the boats at the harbor’s head:, 10
What do they long for, as I long for—
Starting up in my inland bed,
Beating the narrow walls and finding
Neither a window nor a door,
Screaming to God for death by drowning!— 15
One salt taste of the sea once more?

~ Edna St. Vincent Millay

I was far inland for a while - Ohio, Sacramento, then back east to Somerville and Arlington. But still, too far inland. Then closer to the shore, but in the wrong place. A place I took out of fear that there was nothing else, and stayed there far too long.

But then, recently, I saw a place that my heart wanted. That I dared to want. That I got. And now I am here. In peace. In a place that beckons me onto the streets to stretch me legs and see the sites. A place that calls me out after dinner to walk along the shore, step down to the docks and run a hand into the water, yes, it really is there. To fill my lungs back up again with the salt air. To think "some day when I am very very old and dying, please bring me to the ocean and let me go." To wonder if that is morbid, and then realize, no, it's not. It's just love.

Sometimes when I see the mountains, I want to hug them. You can't really hug the ocean. But you can sit next to it and smell it.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Moving In

It's beginning to look at lot like a home!

Movers came on Tuesday and moved me into my new home. Helper Mouse came and helped me unpack. Washer and dryer were delivered today (my first appliances!) and the Verizon guy is getting me set up with internet (borrowing the neighbor's until then. Thanks, neighbor!)

There are still boxes every where.

Here's what it looked like before:

Here's a slight after, at least enough to make it look habitable:

It's not nearly done, and there are a ton of empty boxes and paper to go to the dump (tomorrow!) and I have to buy a broom and dustpan and figure out where the pots and pans get hung and where to put a bunch of furniture and what the flow of the rooms is, and figure out where the art and lamps actually go, but it's getting there. And I'm waiting for it to stop smelling like someone else and start not smelling at all because it smells like me.

I've been pretty good in terms of keeping my head on and only once had a slight bit of embarrassment when an o.b. tampon fell out of some drawer the guys were moving and I had to surreptitiously pick it up off the ground. Smooth. I'm sure they didn't notice.

I love my kitchen, I love the breezes, I love the faint noises of the happy cooing baby and his parents that I heard early this morning, I love the birds in the tree and the crickets, I love my washer and dryer, and my stove and the tall ceilings and the space.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Urban Hiking

I found myself in Cambridge yesterday afternoon after lunch with a couple of hour to kill so I decided to walk around for a while. I had on my Keen walking shoes with Superfeet in them so I knew my feet would be happy. And the humidity had gone away, so I knew the rest of me would be happy. I walked around for an hour or so, but when I got to Harvard Square all of the weird people were out - the ones who want to hand you a grungy piece of paper, the ones who want to talk to you, the ones who want to sell you something, and all the ones who smell like different things.

I found myself rather overwhelmed by the humanity and had to escape. Thankfully I came across this gorgeous, gated, brick-walled garden at Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, so I ducked in. There were a few other people lying in the sun or sitting on a bench, so I found a bench in the shade and lay down, watching the trees and the sky and the people. Wondering what things the people study there. Thinking about my mom when she was in college (she was a Cliffie, 'cliffe? However you write it. She went to Radcliffe. Back when the boys when to Harvard and the girls went to Radcliffe.) It was very quiet and dignified and relaxing there. So different from the scene a few hundred yards away.

That's all the hiking I'll get in this weekend, although a mountain bike trip is planned for this morning. The move preparations continue. The boxes are closing in on me and I scoot around my house like a hoarder must, turning this way and that to fit in between the boxes.

Coffee finished. Breakfast finished. Off to find biking implements before resuming the wrapping and boxing of things.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

First World Problems

I'm afraid my new apartment doesn't have enough closets to hold my winter clothes and linens and suitcases.

I don't know where I'll hang my pots and pans. And my back packs and my boots.

I don't know where my couch will go.

I don't have a couch. Or a sofa. Or a davenport. Or a chesterfield.

Somehow, I think it will all work out.

Wednesday Wonderings

It's Wednesday, a longer weekend awaits (which I just realized), my stuff is all packed for my move and my mind once again turns north and I wonder where I shall take my boots next.

Then this morning I read Section Hiker's post about Mt. Passaconaway, part of which is apparently "psycho-vertical."

Which makes me wonder, is it psycho-vertical like Ammonoosuc Ravine?

Or more psycho because it's longer. I guess there is one way to find out...

However, I need to rethink the whole "get up at 3:30am and drive" thing. It sort of messed up my sleep for the next couple of days and I think it made me more tired on the hike up Kinsman. I might try to find a place to sleep up there if I decide to go. If I can ever figure out about camping, that will give me more options in the future, too.