Posted by: jeanne | August 24, 2010

full moon – shite happens

it’s a full moon.  so, after the dog walk and breakfast, and a leisurely morning spent down in the studio in jim’s case, and cruising around on the computer while making a slew of vital phone calls in my case, and tinker bell and the lost treasure in the grandbaby’s case, we discover that the compressor on the refrigerator has broken during the night.  this involves some hasty action on my part, where i start pulling things out only to pile them haphazardly around an already disorganized kitchen.  the things from the freezer start melting all over the counter, and things from the fridge end up being mostly condiments and half-empty containers.  jars to throw away end up all over the floor, with the door to the fridge gaping open in violation of every household rule.

so i sent jim and the baby over to the round place with a golf club and a plastic ball.  they took the big dog and left me with the little ones, which i’m not sure if i completely forgot to walk until later.   i spent the time putting food into plastic bags and setting them aside on the kitchen floor.

because it wasn’t all bad; i just needed the quiet to organize things.  we started casting around for a new fridge immediately, i having remembered seeing one in the carport at jim’s son’s house, which turns out belongs to someone in utah trying to sell it.  then our homeless guy minio remembers one on someone’s porch down the street who wants to sell it, and then jim’s friend jerry remembers that he’s got his ex-mom’s old fridge in his garage.  this one’s for free, and we’ll know in the morning if it works.

the reason it’s not all bad is because we have two other refrigerators in this house.  there’s the one in the studio, which freezer is crammed full but the fridge is relatively empty, and there’s one in the tenant’s apartment that has almost nothing in either compartment.  i filled them both full.  the stuff we use in the studio fridge, the condiments in the tenant’s fridge.  and the tenant won’t complain, because she’s behind on the rent.

then jim’s son came over and jiggled things, and the freezer started cooling again, so we dusted it off and cleaned all sorts of thick gooey gunge off the cooling grille, and now we’re making ice.  but the fridge compartment isn’t cooling, so we’re still hoping jerry’s fridge is good to go.  we’ll go out and get it on thursday.  we have a pickup trucklet.

ten days out – and i know because my travel date shows up on the ten day forecast – i now have every day until i leave full of things to do.  it’s all down in my daybook.  a book which largely goes blank most of the year, but this year has a flurry of stuff during the last three weeks before i go on my residency.

here’s a newsflash:  i was telling jim this morning, yesterday was the very first time when i flashed on how it would be when i was back home and the trip to europe was just a memory.  before this, i would picture the run-up to the residency, i would picture the residency, i would picture amsterdam with jim.  for two years i’ve been projecting forward to next week.  but i’d never imagined being back home, where it was as if i’d never been away.

with one image i’ve encompassed the thing i’ve been preparing for for several years.  hiccup and you miss it.  because once i’m back it’ll never have this urgency again.  i won’t even think of it because the present is all consuming.  as it is right now, the present is still anticipation of the future, and so it’s doubly rich.  the waves are much higher on this side of the event horizon.  after it’s over, the waves just lap.

i remember a few days ago thinking i’d had enough packing and preparation and was ready to enjoy just living the life i live for a few days.  little did i know what the full moon had in store for me.  unusual things kept happening all day long.  things like my daughter getting sick, which is an all day drama that disrupts anything i may have had planned.  things like the nonstop phonecalls from everyone and a bunch of strangers too.

there’s a possibility that i may get sick, too.  my kid has green gunge in her lungs and feels crappy, so i could easily get the same thing.  and jim could get sick as well.  i would far prefer this happen before i’m gone to europe and jim’s on his own.  i’m going to get sick at some point when i travel – i always do – and i think starting off recovering from sick would be a lot better.

i cleared out all the phone calls today.  tomorrow we’ve got visitors talking about borrowing or buying a painting, which would help.  on thursday we’ve got to go hang paintings at a middle eastern restaurant; maybe one of the patrons will fall in love with one.  on monday i deliver a painting to the diner i painted it of; they’ll show it, and get a discount if they want to buy it themselves.

there’s no more doctor stuff to be done before i go.  there’s a  party on sunday, the grandbaby goes back to his dad on monday, friends are stopping by on their way to the airport on tuesday, and there’s last minute shopping and dropping the pregnant dog off at the breeder’s on wednesday, and then i’m gone on thursday.

my friends who are going at the same time i’m going are just beginning to pack and get ready to go, and i had an email from one of them laughing at me for being so persistent about packing my stuff.  but of course, they’re not trying to take all their art supplies with them.  it’s interesting to contrast their trip with mine; he’s been before but she’s never left the country, and i want them to have a wonderful experience rather than the miserable time they could have if things went sour.  if they caught cold.  if it rained every day.  i want ireland in its best light for my friends.  while i’m kind of hoping i can see ireland at its worst while i’m there, the driving rain, the howling gales.  i’m there to paint the weather, so i think on this side of the moment.

and i’m all excited about the old friends i’ll be seeing, and the little streets and sights of dublin, and the way things have changed and are still just the same.  all the old shortcuts will come back to me, and i’ll wonder if my painting of the inside of this or that pub is still nailed to the wall behind the bar.

tomorrow isn’t too early to begin packing jim.

yes, i’m micromanaging.

anyway, when i decide to just hang out and live as if i weren’t going, all sorts of shit happens to remind me just how fragile my going actually is.  any one of a million things could stop it.  and i’ve chosen to focus on only a few in the time i’ve been considering fulfilling one of my long-held dreams by going on this particular residency.  things like swine flu, things like the volcano, things like that.  stuff that’s maybe a little more or less likely than aliens landing or 2021 catastrophes.

i’m almost finished preparing for my departure.  not in the packing sense, but in the cleaning sense.  i do so love to come back to a clean house.  i go to great lengths to have everything done and waiting for me to toss the luggage into a corner and collapse into clean sheets with a glass of ice water and my sweetie.

so i’ve been clearing my desk today.  i’ve been folding up all the socks.  i’ve been stuffing things up into the attic.

i’m still filling my sister’s ipod.  itunes is giving me fits because i can’t connect to the internet.  it automatically records the first track as track 01 and i did it with two dozen albums before realizing it.  so i have 50 songs that won’t be played with the rest of the album unless i go back and find them.  i can do it.

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