Sweeping, packing, scrubbing, organizing. These are the actions necessary if you want to live in two places. We swung into the New Year with our sights on Santa Cruz. What stands between our snowy home in Missoula and our sunny home there is a project of epic proportions.
Have you ever looked in your silverware drawer? Like really looked into it? Like, looked into it from the perspective of someone paying to use that drawer for the next three months? It's sobering. Let me tell you. The old straws, broken baby spoons, crumbs and stray corncob holders are part of the landscape under normal circumstances, so normal as to be completely invisible, but that sort of stuff starts screaming at you when prepping for someone else to live in your home.
Now let's remember that the silverware drawer is a stand-in, a metaphor, for the entire house.
So I rented a rug doctor of course. It's amazing what a good rug scrub can do, talk about satisfying (if you're into that sort of thing). All of our rugs have been clean and fluffy and piled in the living room - which inspires all sorts of new imaginary games.
Surfaces are being cleared, selfies being taken. It's odd to put away all personal things, to de-personalize a house goes against our basic human instincts. We can see the bone structire of our house, her clean lines and tall ceilings. It's beautiful and erie and quiet-looking.
And then, because we are all just humans trying to fit the pieces of our lives together, our renter let us know that their plans had fallen apart and they would no longer be arriving on our doorstop. We've been carrying on, packing and cleaning at a less break-neck speed, simultaneously trusting and hoping that it's all unfolding just as it should.
By the time our next renter comes along our house will be that much cleaner, our lives that much more organized, our hearts that much more ready to jump into the next stage of our lives. But I can't help feeling like a bride jilted at the altar. We're all dressed up, ready for the event; it's hard to have just another winter day instead of a smiley cross-country trip.
This little bird is all that is left on our usually loaded windowsill. She's ready to fly.