To The FemmeMobile! Away!

{September 5, 2010}   Real life stuff: new home!

This is a post that has nothing to do with being gay, being femme, or gender identity. This is about what’s been happening. I have a new house. An actual house, not an apartment.

It’s morning now, almost 10, and there’s dappled sunlight on my tiny back patio. I’m sitting at a little glass table my landlord had put out, with two old but pretty chairs. The rocks that make up the patio are cool against my bare feet, covered over in patches with some sort of moss. I swept this morning, so it’s clean against my skin.

I’m sitting at my little table, listening to birdsong from one of the many trees surrounding my little place. At night the crickets sing, attracting mates far and wide. From my little patio there’s a broken brick path, leading straight out past three empty vegetable beds on one side and rose bushes, sadly neglected, on the other, eventually leading straight to a 3-foot statue of St Francis of Assisi (appropriate for me, I think). Or I can take the first right on the path, before I get to the vegetable beds or the rose bushes, and go past my own personal privacy fence and into the main yard. There’s a concrete slab for parking cars to the left, and if I turn right again I end up in what I think of as Charles’ (my landlord) yard. It has a black wrought iron table and four chair, a little pond, more flowers.

There are plants everywhere. The air is cool and smells green. Not that wet green you get in humid areas, but just a pinch of green. Green growing things in cool, dry forests.

If you were to come to my house, go through the back gate past Charles’ house and knock on my front door, you’d see a row of bells hanging just to the right. That’s my doorbell. There’d be a window to the left, with my boxes of things I drop as soon as I walk in sitting in the windowsill, and some pictures of the animals that have touched my life but had to leave. When I opened the door, you’d see just past me a stairway so steep it’s almost a ladder. It leads up to a little loft just big enough to fit my futon, with a nightstand on either side and my coffee table at the foot of the bed. Though you can’t see it from below, there’s a funny little storage space down the side. It’s where I keep my clothes and boxes and linens. The roof slopes. Only in the middle can you stand up straight, and as I lay in bed at night I look at the slope of the roof and am somehow comforted.

Back downstairs, the dogs would be thrilled to see you, wagging like crazy as you came in the door. There’s a tiny bathroom to the right of the stairs, with a standing shower and a shelving unit over the toilet. What you might think is a medicine cabinet is actually just a mirror with a heavy frame, and at least three of us have nearly pulled it off the wall now, looking to see how big the “medicine cabinet” is.

The main room opens up, seemingly bigger than it is, with the entertainment center nestled under the stairs. The living area melds into the kitchen with only the flooring to tell you something’s changed. The kitchen counters make an L, the floors a pretty blue-gray tile. There’s plenty of storage in here, and beyond the leg of the counter, visible almost as soon as you walk in, are sliding glass doors cleverly disguised like French doors. They let out into the back, into the green growing area, onto my patio with my plants.

I’m getting barstools today to put along the backside of the counter, so I can sit and eat breakfast or work on my computer when I don’t want to go inside.

It’s ten now, and there’s shade in most of the garden. Patches of blue sky are bright beyond the trees, and the leaves glow with the sun they’re catching. St. Francis is in a spot of light, as he is every morning, and I wonder if Charles did that on purpose or if the trees just grew that way. (I suspect the latter.)

I’ve been crazy busy since I got here, and there have been a few nights when I just want to collapse, but every morning I wake to birdsong and I smile. I go downstairs and I see my green yard. I let the dogs out, and spend a moment leaning against the doorframe and enjoying the fresh air. Sometimes, that’s all the time I get to relax all day. Other times, I can go outside and sit at my table, enjoying the bits of sun and the fresh air and growing things, drinking my coffee or brushing the dogs.

The dogs are learning new rules. Cash has never had a yard, and he’s still trying to be on his best behavior. He doesn’t know what to expect, so he’s making an effort. Lily lived in a yard before I had her, and she thinks the whole place is hers. They’re learning, though, that they can’t run around breakable pots, and they have to go to the bathroom in one spot.

That’s my new house.

I still have things to do in this house, of course. I’ve unpacked all but one or two of the little boxes, and though most everything is unpacked, not everything has a home. I have to decide where to put my pictures and paintings. A harder decision here, because even though there’s more space, there’s less wall space — more windows, you see.

Today is water hockey, which I haven’t gone to since late June, but I can’t decide if I want to go there or if I want to re-pot my tree and wash the dogs. I have a list of things to get done as long as my arm, and not much time. On the other hand, if I went to water hockey maybe I’d make some new friends. And yet, there will be water hockey again in two weeks. It’s just finding the time to go, and I don’t know if I’d enjoy myself more having a relaxing day at home, getting done some of the enjoyable things I need to get done, or if I’d enjoy myself more going to water hockey and splashing around and making friends.

And then there’s my shoulder to consider. It hasn’t been happy lately, and water doesn’t help.

Erp. Maybe water hockey isn’t such a good idea. But you know, having just realized that, I also realized I’d like to go out and do something today, see people. Maybe I’ll look up hiking in the area. Maybe I could take the dogs; they’d enjoy that, too. 🙂 And then I can be alone with myself, or alone with new people, or strike up a conversation.

I’ve been reading this book by SARK, and at one point she talks about how to do things alone. How to go out to dinner or a movie, things like that. And then yesterday Nezu was talking about a poem on being alone. She sent it to me:

Pretty, isn’t it? There’s something a little melancholy about it, I feel, though. Maybe it’s just the way it’s read.

Yes, I think I’ll take the dogs hiking today. New home, new places. It’ll be fun. 🙂 First, get my new bar stools (which are wood, and used. I’m going to paint red dragons on them!). Next, go hiking. Later, I’ll likely wash the dogs, making sure they’re tick-free. Now I can wash them IN MY OWN YARD.

Life is really, really good.



G says:

I loved the virtual tour, and you know what? As I read, I could kind of almost see the place.

I’m so happy for you, as it seems like a really incredible space for you. Keep up posted, would you?

OMG! You have a house!!! Are you still living in the south bay area? Because if you are, DANG girl, a HOUSE!!!!! That’s nothing to laugh at.

And this post was beautifully written, by the way 🙂

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