Sunday, April 6, 2008


Ah yes. There is indeed a floor in this house. The moving truck arrived on Wednesday morning. Rocket, the Composer, and I spent the night before in an empty house on an air mattress in what is now our bedroom. Our car and van arrived Wednesday as well, at my inlaws' house. They drove them (and the two older boys) over in the afternoon. It's been a hectic more than a week, what with travelling, and waiting, and finally FINALLY unpacking.

We've a home again. It's ours. At least as much as any home is really one's own. I've realized (at least at this point in my life) the difference between renting and owning is a somewhat subtle distinction. It means we can do what we want with the house (barring local regulations to the contrary) without asking anyone's permission. Yet that subtle distinction makes a world of difference.

But we don't own it really. It's 80% owned by the bank. The window coverings are someone else's residue. The rusty or leaky pipes are someone else's neglect. We've simply inherited it, like some forgotten uncle's vineyard. The changes, the choices now, are our own.

We've heard every day the same question: So, uh, why'd you move here? And though we struggle, just a bit, to clarify our reasons (even if we simplify them), the question itself is validation somehow that we are keeping perspective, that we have prioritized our lives, that we have decided what we value. And that makes a world of difference.

I sit now, at my reassembled black-brown Ikea galant corner desk with its two extensions, in a too-darkly-painted 10'x10' room, with stacks of boxes, two large bookcases, and three printers. I type on my friend Moose, the computer that has succeeded my old laptop DI in my affections. This is my office. I've set up the wireless network. In fact, the first appliance we brought to the house was the cable modem the internet company installed on Tuesday morning.

My father-in-law and I had been working on finishing off half the basement, until unpacking became the order. We've got a 12'x10' room mostly framed, which will serve as the entertainment center/family room/playspace once its done. The living room contains two sofas, an arm chair and two large book cases. The piano is in the dining room. We removed the second fridge to the garage (in California they rent houses without most appliances, so we brought our fridge, washer and dryer with us). [Don't worry, Tracy, pictures are coming. I promise.]

Many little details still to attend to. I've our taxes to finish in the next week or so. The Painter will take his entrance testing tomorrow for the local school district. I'll talk with them to find out what our options are for the rest of this year and for next. Bit by bit. The bills come due in the next few weeks to cover our moving expenses. The last large chunk for our choice. Then we settle into a budget, and a routine.

Life is clay on a wheel, ours to spin and mold to the content of our hearts' imagination.

1 comment:

Lilian said...

(I want pictures too, of course).

Good to hear from you again!!! I completely agree with your assessment of what "owning" a house means. I find it a bit sad that I cannot feel that this house is really ours because indeed it isn't... I hope things can get settled for you soon.