Saturday, February 09, 2008

Eeks! Long time between posts, I know... You can blame it on our weather, mostly. I mean, Tom was home, sick, two days this week so I could have driven here to the library, but alas! Freezing rain coated all sidewalks, roads and our car almost like some kind of a horror movie (well, in my mind, anyway).


Anyway, the weather is now more sane and yesterday I walked down to the convenience store by way of one of my favorite streets--the street running parallel to the window over our kitchen sink. I stroll that avenue and always--always--I'm reminded of Anne of Green Gables, for there are at least two Victorian houses with huge yards and since our town began in this section, the trees stand like enormous towers. Also, we're at the edge of town, (sorta) and the train tracks run behind the few houses on that side of the street and there are huge piles of brush behind them in places, which doesn't sound all that wonderful, I know, but it's something more natural than just more houses, houses, houses standing three feet apart (which is what you get a lot of here).

I feel as though I'm strolling through old, open countryside when I walk that street, though if you were to walk along with me you'd say, "Wow, Debra. You certainly have one great imagination. I'm just not seein' any countryside, myself."

But that's okay. I've spoken much about Grace here and I think sometimes she messes with my eyes as well as helps me do what I must do. Not only do I see countryside at uncountryish places, I also do not see (or am not bothered by) certain 'Tom areas' of our house, small areas where I let him be him. In our old house, it was the tabletop in the corner of our diningroom where, nearly always, piles and stacks of magazines, papers and tools leaned upon it. Yet I could ignore it. Tom needs places just as I need places, but the old Debra who used to be house-insecure, never could allow him those areas the first years we were married. But now--now--I know they are vital... they are only fair and--unless they scream Fire Hazard, I can walk past them and smile. Or even not see them, literally.

Anyway, needing eggs and onions on Thursday, I walked down our street (not the countryside one) to the new deli on the corner and that was a treat. Two women practically tripped over each other to serve me and I felt a little sad. Small businesses struggle in our area so I try to do what I can to help. They had no eggs, but they did have onions, so I bought one and a bit of potato salad. On my way to the deli an older woman stood out in the snow and asked if I'd seen her black and white cat. He'd escaped last night and she'd been searching for him at 1 in the morning and a policeman asked what she was doing. She pointed to her windows three stories up in case I found him and I hoped he'd only meandered into another apartment and not outside. Way too cold for cats, it is.

And then later a friend of our neighbor-behind-us was barbequing steaks outside on our sidewalk and I had to smile at seeing the barbeque smoking with snow all around. He even shoveled the sidewalk out to the front for me--I told him our daughter was coming by soon and I thanked him. And later I taped Valentines and red heart doilies to Tom's and my white door to make the neighbors smile when they enter the always-smokey vestibule with the peeling grey paint and missing slats.

What a difference a house makes! I am surrounded by people in our new neighborhood, people rather different than the ones only blocks away where we lived so long. I am in the same town, but a whole other world. And I love it.


P.S. On two nights now I've seen Amtrak trains fly by outside our kitchen with their lighted windows. Oh my. How Orient Express. How dreamy. How delightful for my imagination.


Kristi in the Western Reserve said...

Debra, aren't you having too much fun? Perhaps not, but Grace is certainly teaching you how to miss no possible opportunity to celebrate the joy of the gift of life.....I do hope I can visit you next summer. I am planning to be at the cottage quite a bit of the time. Or perhaps you and Tom could come and visit me?

maria said...

Just found your blog and I'm enjoying reading it.


nancyr said...

I think that as we get older, we definitely get "wiser". It is wonderful that you can find so much pleasure in life, and in the "little things" that we used to overlook.
Great post.

... Paige said...

It is nice to read you have countryside near. We have countrside in spots and I look at it often, but not near often enough I'm sure.