Close up Hands Tea x

Sit a bit and hear some observational stories I’ve been steeping.

My house is in order. But my hands are a mess.

BoxesFor a moment I can say, “My house is in order.”  I’m pretty sure that this business of being “in order” will last about five minutes. Honestly, I’d really like it to last longer, but I’m not so sure it’s in the cards for my household.  Five minutes is better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, but I’d still like more of this balance and order.  I dunno.  Say, maybe… 20 minutes?  After all, experts say that a restorative nap is best at 20 minutes.  I’m going to work really hard at this and see if I can’t get that additional 15 minutes down the road.  Perhaps even trading it in, for the elusive 15 minutes of fame that some people covet (because, unlike them, I will continue to pop out to the market in my slippers, unnoticed).

The last six months of my life have been some of the most chaotic, yet rewarding, of the last half century and I don’t even mind all of the additional lines on my face, because they’re where the smiles have been, despite all of the massive changes and manic pace.  Please know, that I can’t lie about the saltwater damage from the tears that have accompanied some of the pace and change, but I have to believe it all balances out in the end – leading to order.  I just didn’t know there would be so many boxes involved.

The theme of the last six months, if I had to boil it down to one word, seems to have been: Movement.  It was as if everyone and everything I ever cared about developed wanderlust, drinking from the same well water and moved.

The radio station I work for, moved into a new (to them) old (to the community) building in a historic part of Southern California called Old Town Newhall in the Santa Clarita Valley. It is an area rich with old west and cinematic history.  It is the home of Wm. S. Hart County Park where you can tour the famous silent movie star’s mansion and wander the Main Street Western Walk of Fame where the saddle plaques of luminaries shine from the sidewalk. Weirdly, it is also home to the oldest surviving oil refinery in the world, but you’d never know it standing in the middle of town.  Meteorologists like to say the area has a “warm-summer Mediterranean climate” which locals will tell you is just code for Surface of the Sun Hot. Which means that all of the remaining gold in California can be easily be found in the surrounding hillsides, once the vegetation turns from green to yellow (having dried and bleached out) for about 7-8 months. Yes, I complain about the heat (the broadcast booth is, after all, surrounded by glass with exposure to the blistering afternoon sun), but I love our new digs.  [It took a few months of being surrounded by boxes, but we eventually made it.]

My daughter had already moved away for college, a few years ago, but still had a room to land in when she visited home, but when my son graduated high school this year – the Viking, at the helm of the household ship, steered us toward a new horizon with two less bedrooms and not a lot of storage space. The plan was for our pod of three to downsize to a more urban area (for a number of reasons) with additional school and employment options for my son. We finally agreed on a spot equidistant from our jobs, next to multiple public transportation options.  I have to say, we landed in a pretty delicious area, too.  One rich with Russian, Middle Eastern and San Fernando Valley (because, as the locals will tell you, the SFV is a unique land unto itself) delicatessens. For a guy who isn’t a foodie, I’m super happy that the Viking willingly planted me in a community where, to paraphrase Scarlet O’Hara: “I will never go hungry (or fit into skinny jeans) again.” [I’m not sure how many calories are burned in packing boxes, but I had an awful lot of them (boxes, not calories).]

In the middle of packing boxes of stuff from over twenty years (and many people) for  moving/donation/storage, my son made the decision to go live in Las Vegas, his favorite city on the planet (which, in my estimation, means he hasn’t actually seen enough of the planet yet).  He had to switch gears after a couple of his original dreams weren’t going to be realized (yet we still love ya’ Otis Elevator Co. and Exceptional Minds) and decided that working in the hotel industry might be good for him. As one of the most social individuals around (take THAT, autism) he wants to be where the people are. He is the king of conflict avoidance, so problem-solving might just have to be one of the parlor tricks he will have to master in class and by living with his father.  [More boxes (and complications) added to the pile.]

My darling daughter is slated to go to graduate school and since we don’t know where that might be, since she still has to apply, her two plus decades worth of “stuff” had to go into storage. [Boxes, boxes and more boxes (because there hasn’t been time to sort through everything).]

No, I’m not totally sure we’re going to have more than five minutes of balance and order, but I think we’re headed in the right direction.  That very sentence indicates more movement, which makes me think there might be more boxes on the horizon.  But, as the old Irish saying goes, “You must empty a box before you fill it again.”

Man.  If someone had told me years ago that boxes were the secret to getting your house in order, I would have bought more moisturizer. They are a bear on your hands.  And your heart.

xo – t

We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” – Walt Disney

Don’t be afraid to move on and start a new chapter.” – Unknown

There are people who put their dreams in a little box and say, ‘Yes. I’ve got dreams. Of course, I’ve got dreams.’ Then they put the box away and bring it out once in awhile to look in it, and yep, they’re still there.” – Erma Bombeck.

Great friends are hard to find, difficult to leave and impossible to forget.” – Anonymous