Thursday, 16 April 2009

A New Life

I have been away from my blog for a long time. My apologies to those who who drop by regularly. I hate it when I go knocking day after day and discover that the blogger I love to read has not posted in the past week.

Some quick updates on my life:

I had my hair cut and no longer look like a First Nations man with braids.

Easter weekend was a flurry of dinners and lunches with friends. Monday Kenya had her annual check-up and shots. Tuesday my car went in for its check-up expecting to change over to summer tires and get its oil changed ... and ended up having a front brake job as well. The two days cost me over $1000. I decided to go back to my hermitage and just stay put where I couldn't spend any more money. I would work on my three knitting projects (baby blanket, socks and mittens)... and I would continue my foray into painting.

Yesterday Kenya and I went for a walk by the river and found an old bird house for painting and lots of pine cones for next year's fires. Two small Scotties dashed out to attack Kenya. She was somewhat shaken by the experience and the owner of the Scotties was embarrassed, but all in all it was a good (and inexpensive) outing.

My imagination box now sits happily in the sunshine beside a plant whose leaves are red and green. I tried to make it turn red by Christmas ... you know ... shutting the poor thing in a closet for 16 hours a day or some such torture. Finally after weeks of this mistreatment I relented and brought it to the bathroom where it sat with its one red leaf for a couple of months. And then a strange thing happened: under normal care and conditions its leaves began to change colour slowly and naturally.

Yesterday I started painting the bureau which I bought for $25 almost fifty years ago.

It has gone through several lives. At first it was the bureau which contained children's clothing. It matched the maple bunk beds which were set up as twins in the master bedroom of my first apartment as a single mother.

Over the years it moved from one home to another with us ... from the apartment by the railroad tracks in Beaconsfield ... to a small bungalow in Cityview where we were to live with a man to whom I was engaged ... to an apartment at Bayshore when that fell through ...I think that was when it held doll clothes.

In 1969 it moved to a school house in Kinburn ... and in 1975 to a fake Spanish house in Aylmer which I hated so much I never even hung my paintings. Less than a year later my second marriage failed and it moved to an apartment in Centretown. By this time it held my clothes.

It continued to move around ... to two other apartments and finally to a house in which I lived for nearly twenty years. In the late seventies it moved out to the cottage where it lived the on again- off again life of cottagers, holding bathing suits and towels ... and the occasional mouse nest.

When I built this house it climbed the hill with me. Quite literally. I hauled it up myself. First the empty shell and then drawer by drawer. At first I used it to hold kitchen linens and place mats. Today it is upstairs where it has become my stash chest.

Its varnish has been battered by time, and one side is a little damaged by dampness, but it is remarkably sturdy for such a well-traveled and misused piece of furniture. Back in 1961, the workmanship, even on inexpensive furniture, was damned good. Except for the new knobs I got from Yardley's Antiques last year nothing has been done to change it.

Till now.

I am planning very distinctive changes but I will keep them a secret until I have finished and can take a photo. All I will say is that I hope it will end its life as a very cheerful piece which can spend its retirement cuddling wonderful yarns.


Anonymous said...

I love reading about the history of things and how you describe its journey. I'm glad you hung on to it.


Oma said...

Thanks for commenting. As for being glad I kept it ... well ... me too.