Posted tagged ‘warm house’

“Springtime is the land awakening. The March winds are the morning yawn.”

March 8, 2014

A sunny day with a blue sky and warm temperatures almost makes me wonder if I’m delusional. My mind is having trouble wrapping around this change in weather. It’s hard to believe, I know, but it is actually above freezing and will get to the 40’s today. The sides of my street are a stream of water from the melting plow piles. My birdseed barrel is no longer frozen to the deck. My front lawn is snowless. I wore my slippers to get the papers, and my socks didn’t get wet. My mouth is agape.

My furnace needed a new blower motor. It was around 62˚ in here by the time it was fixed, but it didn’t take long for the house to be warm and cozy again. The furnace even blows more quietly now. The bill will be in the mail.

When we’d have a string of warm days, I’d start riding my bike to school. It was mostly downhill in the morning until the straightaway which led directly to school. The bike rack was in the schoolyard under the trees. It was made of wood and painted green. We never used locks, and I don’t remember anyone ever having a bike stolen. The ride home was uphill, and by the time I was halfway up the hill by my house, I was walking my bike. It was early in the season, and my legs weren’t hill ready yet. They wouldn’t be until closer to summer when I would always ride all the way up the big hill and never think of stopping.

A day like today meant putting the winter coat, the hat, the mittens and the scarf away even if only for this one day. It was a wonderful freedom of movement. I loved my spring jackets. They were always light colors, usually pastels. I’d wear a sweater underneath until it got warm enough for just the jacket, for when spring was in full bloom.

In the spring I always felt like skipping. Walking wasn’t joyous enough.

“One of the most glorious messes in the world is the mess created in the living room on Christmas day. Don’t clean it up too quickly.”

December 21, 2013

Bedtime was around 1:30, and now I’m up, and it’s still dark. My newspapers aren’t even here yet, but I’ve had my first cup of coffee, always the best way to start a day. My trees are lit in the living room. That was the first thing I did.

Nothing is on my agenda for today except maybe laundry, kind of makes me look forward to the day. As if…

The house was warm when I woke up, 66˚, even though the thermostat was set at 62˚for nighttime. When I let Gracie out, I found outside also unexpectedly warm, especially for a dark morning in December. Yesterday the high was 54˚ so I did a couple of errands so I could enjoy the day. I bought dinner, and it was delicious: steak kabobs with peppers and onions and roasted rosemary potato wedges. For dessert I had a couple of peanut butter balls my sister had made from my mother’s recipe. They are a Christmas tradition. My mother would make a huge batch and freeze some of them so in February she’d surprise us by bringing them out for dessert. They never lasted too long at Christmas or in February.

When I was in elementary school, the church fair was always a week or two before Christmas. It was in the auditorium at the town hall, a short walk from school. Fair day was always a half-day. At dismissal we’d walk in twos, class by class, with the nuns accompanying us. Once at the town hall we were free. The Christmas fair was a huge occasion, and my mother always gave us money to shop and to buy lunch, usually hot dogs. I remember the best table in the fair was the kids’ table. It was the place to Christmas shop as it was filled with inexpensive gifts for us to buy for our families. I’d walk round and round the table picking up and putting down gifts always trying to find just the right presents. After I did, I’d hand them to the woman behind the counter, somebody’s mother as the fair was run by the mother’s club. She’d bag them, collect my money then hand the precious bags to me. That usually signaled the end of the fair for me. I’d walk home with my gifts and hide them in my room, usually under the bed or in the closet. I’d take them out of their secret hiding place several times to check on them until finally I’d wrap them. I made sure to use lots of paper and tape. I was always so proud of those gifts.

“The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don’t.”

February 17, 2013

The snow is heavier than it was a couple of hours ago when I woke up. It was small and light then. Now there is a fury of flakes whipped by the wind. The bird feeders are being tossed to the left and right, and the birds ride with them. The tops of all the pine trees bend one direction then the other. When I went to get the papers, the snow went up over my shoes, but the driveway was clear. I could see the blacktop. The drifts have no pattern. The wind changes all that.

My house is warm. All three animals are with me, and all three of them are asleep. I can hear Gracie’s deep breathing. She is beside me on the couch. Fern is behind me on the back of the couch curled on an afghan, and Maddie is in her chair. We are all perfectly content.

I never believed in monsters when I was a little kid. Nothing was under the bed or in the closet. My imagination led me to places rather than things. I made several trips to the moon. My rocket ships were never like the space capsules of the real astronauts. Mine stood tall, had side fins and were so big inside that the crew could walk around after I turned on the artificial gravity. The kitchen always had coffee.

I wasn’t disappointed by Alan Shepard’s short flight. I was amazed we had sent a man into space, and I figured that was the first of many dress rehearsals before the real rockets would be built, the ones with kitchens. I watched John Glenn’s capsule take off and followed his flight as he orbited the Earth. I was older then and had given up on rocket ships with kitchens.

I never saw the trip to the moon. I was still in Africa, but I was lucky enough to hear bits and pieces about the moon landing on the radio, including real transmissions. It was exciting even without the visual coverage. We were finally on the moon, but I still didn’t know what it looked like. In the imaginings of my childhood I created a stark moonscape filled with craters and rocky hills. I was pretty close.

I was sorry there were no ruins on the moon from cities deserted long ago. I always sort of hoped there would be remnants looking a bit like the Great Wall of China. That would have been the perfect touch: that and a rocket ship with a kitchen.

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