It’s glorious. I love everything about my new home. Really, everything!
The beautiful wood floors, the stain glass windows( see the previous post), the large yard, the once barn/now garage/soon to be art studio, the window seats in the living room (my favorite place to sit) my doorbell, the lovely perfectly sized kitchen(not too small..not too big), three bedrooms, the ceiling fans (so nice here), the lilac bush and the giant maple, the front porch…the back porch, the neighborhood, the next door neighbor, the town, the beautiful White Mountains that surround us…
Chris took me on a drive last night to see moose, still elusive. As we were heading home he said something to the effect that we had sacrificed a lot to get here. It’s true. We’d talked and planned and acted on a dream of coming east for about a year and half. We gave up the security of jobs and friends and a known way of living for a giant unknown. We have spent a lot of money and energy to realize our dream, our scheme, our plan for a different kind of life. We have been each other’s sole companion and confident, cheerleader and best friend. More than a few judged what we were doing. They thought us fool hearty…that we needed to be careful..have more of a definite plan. We did what we did. Sometimes you have to take a chance and leap. We’re still leaping, there are still some unknowns, but what happens tomorrow is always unknown.
Today, I know that I love where I am living. For the first time, truly, I feel home. I am in a place of my own choosing. Today, there is no place else I’d rather be.
Took Luka for a nice walk; but while she was sniffing and rolling and ever present, I was lost in my thoughts and moving on auto pilot, unaware and anywhere but where I was. Perhaps it is the new job. As a milieu counselor to teens in a residential rehab, I have to be hyper vigilant and focused. So much is happening at any one minute, and the mood of the floor and the emotions of the boys are always changing…always balancing precariously. I really do love my job. But when I get off, my brain turns off.
One might think this is a good thing, and in a sense it can be, but I lose mindfulness. And today, as I walk the streets of my neighborhood with my dog I saw nothing I remembered. I felt nothing but tired.
I took a bath after a small dinner, and pondered what had happened. Where am I when I am not present? What happens to that time, what happens to me? I fear that I have lived many years of my life this way, moving with a momentum not my own, scrambling, racing, tired. And to what end? There is a balance to be found in everything. I would like to be living mindfully most of the time. Knowing that might just make the difference.
It is said that it takes ten years of living in a place to really get to know it. That being the case, I have never really known a place. But now, here in my beautiful cottage in NE Portland, I am getting the chance.
Today I made my way to the fish market, talked with David the owner, bought some trout and oysters then headed over to a lockssmith(which I never found). I wandered the twenty or so blocks back to my house, walking where I’ve walked so many times before. I am coming to know these houses and streets. I know the dogs certainly, and which side of the street I must walk on if I am with Luka.
A trip to the post office this morning had me talking with neighbors and petting a new puppy. Kids were setting up a lemonade stand, and two women waved at me from their driveway, a garage sale underway. I have everything here that I thought living in the country would bring me, but never seemed to. Proximity and intimacy, and the simplicity of everyday.
This evening as I mowed and cleaned up the strip of weeds along my walk, I met my neighbor Chris. She admires the unruliness of my yard. And I hers. She lives in the house one block down on the corner, a cool door leads off the top floor to the porch roof. We talked about the bravado of the squirrels and our love of this neighborhood, and the ocean like sound of the freeway.
I am so glad to live here. I love my home and the life I am making. And I love those with whom I get to spend my days.
I just discovered this wonderful Vietnamese market in my neighborhood. Okay..I’ve know it was in my neighborhood since I moved to NE Portland, I just didn’t know how wonderful the market is. I just bought three bags of food for $20.00. Really! Lots of beautiful veggies, fresh thai basil, noodles, hot sauce, even some oranges, and yummy wontons. And when I checked out, I was given a plastic $1.00 off coupon for my next trip. How nice is that?
Last weekend I went to the market and bought $5.00 worth of food and was able to make 3 huge meals out of it. Money’s tight these days, and I feel frugal but fortunate. Tonight I made a beautiful pho..so tasty…
There’s something very sweet about living in one’s neighborhood. And I have a neighborhood that I can really enjoy living in. I can walk to parks, restaurants, a bookstore, coffeehouse, farmers market and post office…longer walks can take me to the library, movie theater, and some antique stores. The lightrail is just down the street, the airport not too far away. I say it often, and it’s true.. I love where I live. Life is feeling right right now.