Saturday, August 31, 2013

Come One, Come All!

"And then I'm going to go and get lunch in one of these gorgeous new restaurants!"

Said I to my sister Ruthie on the phone this morning.  Well, and I didn't make the lunch date with myself, but I have merely shifted the time back to dinner, and I will go and get some food in one of these lovely new restaurants in a few hours.

What I did instead of lunch was a glorious two-hour nap, from which I awoke with no sign of bleariness or the pop-eyed catatonia which is usually my fate when my naps last longer than half an hour.  See, I awoke this morning at four, as per usual lately, and was unable to go back to sleep at all, so I got up and made myself coffee and started in on the house.  And I had finished it -- FINISHED IT! -- before ten.  Ten was when I heard the first sounds in the apartment of anyone else getting up.  Not a sound from upstairs or next door until then, so I had perfect peace -- the occasional car driving past out on the road, the occasional chirp from the walnut tree outside the window.  Six hours of beautiful, solitary progress.  Oh, and I took my time, as anyone who knows me knows.  My inherent laziness and general fatness and sloth keeps me from passing an inviting chair if my back has begun to ache.  And I had several cups of tea as the morning progressed, and read the rest of a book I had started reading last night, and so on.   I listened to Nero Wolfe on tape as I folded clothes away into plastic bags for the Goodwill pick-up, stacked shoes into the shoe bag,  scrubbed at a stain on the carpet, and hung the shower curtain around the clawfoot.

So now I am ready to receive visitors!  Come one, come all!  I am expecting Doug and Kathy tomorrow, Alan and Jody the day after, and POSSIBLY Joe and Katt and Jamey this afternoon sometime.  Probably not those last visitors, though.  Hard to believe that Joe will actually drive into Northwest Portland!

Friday, August 9, 2013


Goodness me, I am so happy.

I know, I've said that a lot lately.  But I really, really am.

I just wrote a letter this morning, to a friend from Cannon Beach, and for a moment --  as I was picturing her walking down to that sweet little shingle-covered post office, with her hair being blown around her face with a chilly ocean-scented breeze under the brilliant sun -- I missed living on the coast.  I missed the ocean, and the beach, and the never-changing in and out of the tides.

But!  I am now living in the best and brightest, most hip and happening neighborhood in the city, and paying less for it than I paid for a place in the dullest and deadest backwater suburb of them all.  I am surrounded by buzz and cheer and people's voices, by laughter and visiting and freshly-brewed coffee, by books and newspapers available everywhere, restaurants of every description absolutely clogging up the sidewalks, and more people than anyone could count.  I am home, and safe, and free and myself again.  I can walk to anywhere I want to go -- and will be, I promise you!  This weekend I am not going to allow myself to be lazy in the apartment, or get busy in Beaverton -- I am going to walk around the neighborhood, and see what is still there (Besaws!) and what is new (The Matador!) and I am going to sit outside at least one place sipping coffee and people watching.

Man, I need a laptop!  But someday.  For now, I will just write with a pen on a notebook page.

Friday, August 2, 2013

I try to be my best

This morning as I was getting ready to come to work, I realized that I had still not found my shoes -- none of my "regularly used" shoes, which got left to the last minute, and so had to be somewhere in a box or bag,  probably on top.  I looked around -- and then looked more closely -- and then began to search, burrowing into each bag and digging down into each box.  The mess increased exponentially.  I stuck my feet in my ratty working shoes to go out to the car, which must be where they still were, right?  Nope.  

Then I came back in and worried.  You do have to wear shoes at work, and you do have to wear appropriate shoes on a day when your boss and other people are going to be having a meeting in your office.  I finally reached for my library book bag, which was standing neatly at the head of the bed, untouched since it was surely too small for more than one pair of shoes.  But no, four pairs were carefully packed into that small interior, plus my camera cord, a small box containing safety pins, and a bottle of ibuprofen.  The treasures of Ali Baba! Carefully wedged into the bag I carry to the library. 


Thursday, August 1, 2013

So. Very. Happy.

Okay -- it's the first of the month, and you know what that means.  It means that I had to be out of my apartment last night, come what may, come what might. And I DID IT!  Calloo, Callay!

But I could not have done it in anything like the degree of efficiency, if it weren't for my downstairs neighbor, Mary.  She stood and patiently wrapped small random glass and china articles that kept showing up in the corner of cupboards or the back of shelves, as I plodded up and down, up and down, with box and basket.  And she was the one who opened the coat closet door, as I was coming back up for a final check of the rooms, to reveal it full of coats, hats, scarves, gloves and a broken fan.  I wasn't very excited about that at the time, but now I imagine (with happy relief) the surprise and distress of looking around for my winter coat when the snow starts falling, and I'm very glad.

So, my new apartment is a happy disaster, as you can well imagine, especially after I sifted through four or five anonymous black plastic garbage bags this morning, looking for my black work pants.  I finally had to be satisfied with wearing blue jeans to work today, but fortunately, no one has come to the office for the past few days.  So we'll hope for the best!

Now this morning, I got up at five-thirty, not from any need, but because I was wide awake -- gonna have to re-program myself over the next few weeks -- and did some very desultory putting away of things.  Which is to say, that I put books on two shelves and some band-aids in the bathroom.  I headed out at seven, to see if I could get in my call on the new credit union (my old one required me to live in Clackamas County) and a stop at Food Front for a bus pass.  

(Hmmm -- spell check does not accept the word "Clackamas" and suggests that I really want "blackamoors."  Don't think so.)

But the credit union was reacting to construction on their building by opening half an hour later than usual, and Food Front doesn't open until 8 anyway, I observed.  So I went ahead and caught the number 15, and rode it all the way here!  Around the corner from my door, to three blocks from work!  Pretty darn good.

So now -- let me just say this out loud -- I live in Northwest  once again.  I never have to drive down Hwy 224 again in my life, unless I want to.  I am tired and my eyes are sunken, I have 34 visible bruises and six blisters, and three cuts.  But I am very, very happy.