This is Luna.
She’s one of the animals I look after sometimes. An ancient kitty, she loves to sit on my lap & be brushed, and is quite fond of taking over the pillow by the middle of the night.
This is Sophie. It was quite warm the week I stayed with her & her sister, Izzy.
Warm & humid.
Before this stretch with Sophie & Izzy, I had the good fortune to be with Nemo for a while in July.
This was taken before the recent rains…
On very hot days, she’d hop into a ceramic dish for a nap.
Before this, I was at another house, with two kitties. (No photos that time…)
Basically I was not living in my apartment for the entire month of July.
But I was there a lot, packing. Everything. I just moved.
Thanks to my friends, who helped out in so many ways, to support this past move.
Schlepping boxes, sanding patches, dropping off stuff at resale stores, bringing blueberries & pop, bringing good cheer, texting, offering emotional support over the phone & in person… I really could feel the net of people… & their support.
These follows are older than me, but when together, are like 9 year olds. Another friend (I didn’t catch a photo of her) held the reigns & called the shots to keep things going.
They were a huge help on a very hot day driving boxes from my apartment of 2 & 1/2 years to the next landing place.
Basically if I was there on my own, I’d listen to music or a podcast & pack & pack & pack after work before heading back to whichever place I was housesitting at.
Thank the gods for all these friends & all these cats in my life.
Because the day I got there, the day I would officially “move in”, there was a distinct sinking feeling in my heart & my gut.
It was the very same feeling when I crossed the California state line back in 2002.
Something akin to: o no. What did I do?
A sort of “wrong” feeling. Like I had made a mistake.
I get this feeling when I’m driving somewhere & I know I’m lost, that I’m going the wrong way.
It’s the same feeling.
Driving, though, I can just turn around, get off at an exit, go a different route.
Moving, and renting, & having signed a lease, a binding agreement, the stakes are higher, the consequence greater, especially since I sunk my savings into making it happen. (Rent is expensive in these parts…)
I’m haunted by my decision.
Reflecting on how I only saw what I was looking for, & overlooking the aspects of the place which were, um, funky.
I really thought it was a place I could settle into for a while.
But it turned out the landlord forgot to mention one piece of information which would have changed my decision to apply for this apartment.
She says she mentioned it. I said, um, no you didn’t.
“You could get a cat. That’s what the former tenant did.”
And yes, sure, I love cats.
But I’m not in the position where I can be with (my own) cat at this point of my life.
Clearly a misunderstanding occurred, to the point where she offered to let me out of the lease.
Now, aside from not having the money to rent a different place (including a security deposit), to simply to FIND a place in this town that was both affordable AND in less than a month and with no back-up alternate place to go (not to mention all of my belongings) was, well, it just seemed impossible.
And, quite frankly, I didn’t have the energy or the will to even try. Just moving that last week of July following the entire month of packing every day & cleaning both places while working just wore me out.
I haven’t blogged about it, because I’ve been feeling pretty bad about myself & my decision, & my life at the moment.
Yes, it’s a privilege to move with all of my belongings. Yes, I am currently employed. Yes, I am rich in community.
It still feels bad. I feel bad. Ashamed. Stupid. And then it globs into all the choices I’ve made in my past from places of fear & I just send myself into a sort of spiral.
So I’ve been kind of hiding out in shame & embarrassment that extends beyond this one decision & situation.
Even though had I been given all the information I would have made a different choice.
Luna’s like: “stop being so hard on yourself”
The landlord isn’t going to do anything about the mice.
I’m in a year lease.
I’m buying a *%#^ton of steel wool to shove into any cracks & holes, and screwing welded wire over the really wide gaps.
And I’m telling myself that I’m living in a cabin. For a year.
(Thank you, Amy-la, for that.)
And at the recommendation of my wise sister, & then a friend, I’m going to look at what I appreciate about this place, AND what really doesn’t work for me, and apply that to my decision regarding any future places.
I appreciate that I can heat with wood. I enjoy stacking wood.
The woodstove was one of the four things I saw and said ‘yes’ to.
Wood stove, separate structure (that is, no one above or below or attached to the side), quiet, & a place to garden.
All really great things.
But just focusing on those four things is like stepping into a relationship with someone just because they have a mouth & a hand to hold & a, well you get the idea.
I tend to overlook the whole picture.
Living and learning here.
On a brighter note, despite the severe drought we’ve been experiencing, the hickory trees are quite abundant in nuts this year.
Mockernut & Bitternut hickory droppings from a very tall canopy & signs of critter munching.
O the critters.
Wishing you all well on this night.
Wishing you gentleness & ease.