Sunday, July 26, 2009

Transition

Today I should be safely arriving in our new home town of Blenheim. As I won't have easy access to a computer for long enough to compose a witty diatribe for you all, I decided that I would leave you in the safe hands of The Badass Geek. I think you'll find he sums up all the feelings that I am likely experiencing right now.

So sit back and enjoy.....and think of me, going through customs and just PRAYING that one of those cute little beagles won't sit and stare at me like I have something illegal in my bags. I don't, I promise!!

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There is an interesting transition that happens when you move from one home into another. Regardless of how long you’ve lived there, it happens. As someone who has moved more times in the past five years than he has fingers on one hand, I should know.

Before you leave the keys behind with the landlord, you walk around your soon-to-be former house, checking all the cabinets and closets for anything that may have been forgotten. You walk gingerly on the freshly vacuumed carpets and are careful not to track dirt on the kitchen linoleum. You are mostly quiet, because every sound echoes off of the bare walls that once held family pictures and decorations, the fundamental things that made those four walls change from just another place to live, into a home.

And then you leave, no longer a resident but a former tenant. You can’t help but feed that nagging thought, wondering if the new place will ever feel as much like home as the one you are leaving behind.

When you arrive at your new residence, it is late and dark. The lights in the house seem harsh, too bright because you haven’t had a chance to change the bulbs to a lower wattage. Everything is foreign here, even the clock on the stove makes you feel like you are in someone else’s house. The chaos of your possessions scattered about in boxes doesn’t help, but it is too late to start unpacking. You slip off your shoes and tread barefoot and exhausted into your bedroom.

Maybe you’ve set up your bed already, or maybe its just the mattress and box spring laying on the floor. Maybe you’ve got an air mattress to spend that first night on, but either way, you lay down and release the breath that you didn‘t know you were holding. You listen to the sounds the house makes, and tell yourself that you’ll get used to it. You will, you have to. You fall asleep staring at the shadows cast through the blinds on the window.

In the morning when you wake up, you first visit the bathroom like always. You stretch and yawn and rub your eyes, maybe splash some water on your face. You make your way out to the kitchen to survey the work that lays ahead of you, and wish you had unpacked the coffee maker. And then, you see it.

It, the one box that you carried in and set aside in a special spot so you’d know where it was among all the others. You walk over and open it, and carefully wrapped inside is your favorite picture. You pick it up and unwrap the newspaper that protected it in the move, letting the paper fall to the floor. You hold it out in front of you and stare into it for hundredth or maybe the thousandth time. In the corner of your eye you see a nail in the wall, left behind from the previous tenant.

You try it out, and it fits perfectly on the nail. After a minor adjustment to set it hanging straight, you take a step back. You smile. The smile and the picture on the wall changes something, even though you probably haven’t realized it just yet.

Did you feel that? That was the transition.

You’re home now.

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12 comments:

  1. This is just a comment, in which I admire your writing skills.

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  2. That was really beautiful!

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  3. And this is a comment in which I say "you have done this too many times, man." Great job, it doesn't sound too unpleasant.

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  4. Amazing. Simply amazing. You captured it perfectly.

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  5. Wonderfully on point post Badass - just wonderful :)

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  6. You sure nailed that one, Badass. I can picture the first night in my house right now...lovely post!

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  7. None of the moves I've made in my life were this serene (15+). My next move, you're planning out for me.

    Nice post. Thanks for taking on a bit more while Maggie is doing her transition.

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  8. Aw, that was awesome. I'm finally catching up, but I did remember moving here so incredibly vividly. We slept in sleeping bags in the family room. The electricity was turned off, but we had a Coleman lantern.

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