600: Old and New

I have purchased another house. This one isn’t new, either, which means there are things that need to be fixed to suit me (and others, if I should decide that I don’t want to continue living in this place until I go to my great reward in the hereafter).


Older homes become dated-looking. No matter how spiffy your home once was (at the very pinnacle of fashion), things change. That nifty and trendy avocado or burnt orange color scheme that was so popular once – isn’t now. Unless you want to maintain that home in the 1970’s style as a hipster showplace, there will be things to change and work to be done to bring the home into the current era. This is necessary even when the old, dated stuff is still mostly functional, especially if you ever plan on selling the home again at some future date.

Then, there are the things that some other occupant/owner of the home did in some previous iteration that you stand gazing at in absolute wonder and stupefaction, scratching your head and wondering, WTH? This includes funky things like:

  • a bedroom that can only be accessed by going though a bathroom, or, not quite so egregious: another bedroom (????)
  • a toilet installed smack in front of a bathroom door with one foot clearance between the front of it and the sink cabinet, such that it becomes a tripping hazard. Did they step OVER it to get into the bathroom previously?? And, when it comes to using that toilet, whose legs are that short?
  • a kitchen with no lighting fixtures. At all. Not even one. ?? You had lamps – in the kitchen?
  • the ever-popular favorite – doors installed so close to each other that each interferes with opening the other.
  • an elaborate, attached to the roof, shingled, installed cover for the central heat and air unit that funnels rain water right smack into the back door. In floods. Did it never rain while you were there?
  • windows that are painted shut. *sigh*
  • door hardware that does not match – literally seven different styles of knobs, hinges, and finishes in the one house. Did you buy a sampler pack?
  • exposed electrical wiring, or funky outlet placements – such as running the plug for the fridge through the side of a cabinet (all the way across to the other side) to be able to plug in the fridge. Not much experience in planning, hmmm?
  • a room the size of a closet – literally three feet by four feet – that has AV coaxial cable installed in it.   ???
  • Astro-turf (literally, plastic grass) as the master bedroom carpet. Indoor sports?? Needed that look of nature? It was the cheapest floor covering they had?


Weird and questionable homeowner decisions aside, the last category of items you must deal with when you purchase a home that isn’t new are those things that are just worn out. This includes things like flooring, paint, siding, bathroom and kitchen fixtures, hot water heaters, central heat and air units, appliances, chain link fencing, the roof, and various and sundry other necessary (and costly, usually) things.

Still. I am sure that there have been people who have purchased homes I have owned who have scratched their heads over some of the things I did, too. Karma. Doing its thing.


541: Married


It feels very new.

Shiny. Unblemished. Stain-free. Clean.

Like a new pair of running shoes – a little stiff and awkward still.

Bright with the promise of new, uncharted miles to be run.

Possibilities. Unlimited horizons. Opportunities.

No hint yet of fatigue, or of sweat. Tears. Pain.

I know those things are there, too, waiting to be discovered. Experienced.


That is what marriage is, what marriage means.

Good, bad, easy and hard, exciting, sad.

I am here for you.

Welcome home.

491: Yes

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To a new country, with a new culture, a new language, even a new alphabet. Yes.

To a new solo life, new foods, a new apartment, new friends. Yes.

To new pastimes, new books, a new gym, new routines. Yes.

New grocery stores, new hairstyle, new lipstick, new shampoo. Yes.

New dress, new shoes, new lingerie. Yes.

New ideas. Yes.

New books to read. Yes.

New music, a new church. Yes.

New attitude, new thoughts. Yes.

New ME.


Yes, ma’am.

466: Processing Me

At any new employment, there occurs the process of processing the new employee. There are papers to sign and forms to fill out, medical checks to complete, introductions to be made, and orientation tours to be taken, among other processing tasks, like training the new person.

I am right in the middle of that process of processing me. Every one else here has been employed since the start of the academic year in August. I am replacing a person who departed mid-year, so I am being processed all by my little old self. This is interesting, since previously, I have always been part of a group of new hires. I have never been THE (one and only) new hire. Hmmmm.

Easier to fade into the crowd. Hard to fade into a crowd of one.

461: Beginning Yet Again

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Starting over again. In some ways, this is exciting,with a world of new possibilities and opportunities out there, just waiting to be experienced and enjoyed. This is the way I want to view the process – bright with hope and joy, looking for bigger, better, more beautiful things and people. Positive thinking (and the power that comes along with it), is certainly the best choice, and choosing is what is happening right now as I look up this new trail with all its intriguing overlooks, new scenery, side trails leading off to scenic, hidden delights, and fascinating passers-by just waiting to be met and to become new friends. Starting over. I have the chance to start over! It is an opportunity denied to many. New horizons, here I come!

Still, with all of its advantages and possibilities, starting over is a time to be prudent. Take time to get to know the place, the people and the possibilities before leaping, willy-nilly, off of the cliff. Don’t get me wrong, cliff leaping is not a bad thing in and of itself. As an enthusiastic, roller-coaster fan of old, I certainly am not one to denigrate the feeling of excitement and the thrill of adrenaline as your feet leave solid ground and you launch out into clear blue sky. Having said that, I prefer launching out when I have at least some clear idea of what awaits at the landing zone. Cactus is not my idea of clear sailing.

Still and all, even with the faint threat (discounted, certainly) of disaster, I am launching myself into a brand-new beginning. Hey, you can drown in your own bathtub, for Pete’s sake! I prefer to test the waters, sail the sky and seek the wind. Then, at the end of the day, I can settle in front of the fire with a good book and a cup of hot chocolate, and be happy in my own skin. Cheers!

449: Replacement

I will replace you.

Not with permanence, or forever, or things that last.

I will replace you minute by minute, memory by memory.

You will drown under the new, the temporary, the scent of new.

I will replace what you were

with what is now.

I will remove you piece by tiny piece,

scrap by scrap,

inch by throbbing inch.

You will be no more and I


I will replace you.

335: The Green Monster

Fluff-man is insanely jealous.

My neighbor across the lawn rescued three calico female kittens from a dumpster, and I took photos, made up a flyer and posted it at our 400+ student school, hoping to help get them adopted out. No such luck. Not a single nibble. So, I took one.

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She is a cute little seven-week old, frisky and loving little lady, who attacks my hand in play fights while I am reading on the couch, and then licks the places she play bites in apology. She’s such a sweetie I named her Dulce – the Spanish word for sweet. She and I are getting along just fine. Caruso, my man-kitty buddy, a chunky, handsome tiger-striped brown boy, is fascinated with her and wants to play – but he’s a little big and she is scared of him still. So, he contents himself with lying nearby and watching her antics. Fez, my champagne and white regal lady kitty, is disdainful, but she contents herself with growling under her breath, and occasionally hissing as she strolls majestically past the little interloper.

The problem is Fluff-man. He is INSANELY jealous. Whenever he spots her, he distorts his handsome kitty face with the evilest-looking hiss (issued repeatedly), and he growls so furiously and loudly at little Dulce that it is almost howling. You can hear his mental wheels turning loud and clear – that little s*&$ is getting pets from MY MAMA, and I HATE HER GUTS. I came home from work yesterday to find Dulce mewing piteously, sitting forlornly on top of the drapery rod, just beneath the ceiling, where she had obviously climbed to escape Fluff-man’s furious swats.  Fluff outweighs her 10 to 1, so this is a real issue for the little girl.

Today, I set her up with food and water bowls and a private kitty potty in the unused second bedroom, and I shut the door. Her ”I am abandoned” wails were difficult to hear, but I’d rather she be a little lonely than hurt. My unrepentant, furious Morocco boy kitty is acting like a Muslim meeting a Jew for the first time. It’s not pretty.

I am hoping that time will temper the fury and I can convince Fluff that this new little furry face does not mean I love him any less.