Tuesday, October 14, 2014
But, I stayed in the house, thanks to Genevra, who agreed not to force me to sell because I'd signed papers agreeing to do that. And I spent money on it for the first time. Oh, I'd put on two roofs and replaced an oil burner and fixed the downstairs bathroom and had my bathroom floor repaired when the toilet threatened to fall into the apartment below…
But I hadn't done anything else. I hadn't decided that this is my house, even though I've lived here for 30 years. It was still temporary with all my collapsable furniture and clutter.
But Elsa suggested Delson, the most magnificent contractor imaginable. I didn't imagine that I could afford him. But he's reasonable and has lovely Brazilians working for him -- his son-in-law, two nephews and various assorted others who he's hired. The first photo show the remains of the porch that he thought he'd just have to repair, but that I knew was in dire shape.
For years, Joe and Pam lived next door with his parents. Pam did a lot of work on the garden, in the yard, which was undone by the folks who bought it. They even took down a pine tree taller than the house that his mother had planted when he brought it home in a styrofoam cup from kindergarten. Pam has volunteer petunias and offered me some, but I somehow never got around to take them. But here's one that was growing by the sidewalk and I dug it up with a spoon, at night.. There was another one, but two days later, all of that was clipped. The folks next door like everything clipped. So, here is the petunia in a tiny garden that I started in all the madness of having done nothing, nothing, nothing to the back yard when the house was supposedly going to be bought as was.
I ended up as a pretzel with my legs lodged above my head in the twist of the stairway. I am lucky to have only gotten a swollen ankle and a limp for a few weeks. Needless to say, I didn't transplant it, them, anything.
And then the upstairs porch was stained, in the nick of time, because the pressure treated wood was parched and starting to crack.
I wasn't pleased with this particular one which looks half dead, but she assured me that it will be fine in spring. They put in five, including this one. I wanted to replace the lovely cherry that finally gave up, two cherries to be exact. One used to hang over the driveway next door and Joe's father used to pick cherries to put in brandy. No such luck now because they had no actual fruit trees and I wouldn't have bought one because I can no longer dig a sufficiently large hole and dump in humus.
I felt terrible when the guys left, as if they were leaving home. They had a strange sweetness, as if they weren't judging me or my house, just trying to make it better.