Wednesday, September 9, 2015

a moment in the day: porch toast

Stephen and I sit side by side on the porch steps. Early-dusk blue sky, a cartwheel of crows overhead. We closed on our house today, this house behind us, and it feels real like only something this big feels real, which is to say not real. Whose house is this, it's not our house, it's not a house at all, it's the facade of a house sitting on the old MGM motion picture back lot, it's a painted stage flat on the opera stage at the Keller auditorium. We each have a glass of Veuve Clicquot.

We’ve been wandering around the empty rooms that are full of the stale smell of the fifteen thousand cigarettes smoked by the people who lived here before, pulling up old carpet to see the paint-splattered wood floors underneath. Taking “before” pictures of the cracked kitchen counters, the lovely but scarred and paint-splattered wood moldings and columns in the dining room, taking stock of the work before us.

Cats make lazy lopes through the street. A perturbed squirrel squawks at us from the walnut tree. We clink glasses.

Stephen says, "This is ours."

I take that in for a moment.

He sips his champagne and turns to gaze at our new house. “I don’t usually own things this junky.”