Its often the ironies that go along with that whole, "small world" cliche, that get to me the most.
The occasional "I can't believe you know Don too, WOW!" from someone I've met in my world travels, is never wasted on me.
Often my favourite is the glance, re-glance in passing, say at an airport or Casino or even once as bizarre as it sounds, at a concert in Tokyo, Japan. The glance is almost always eye to eye immediately. Then you both try to shake it off as a trick being played on you by your brain. It has to be right? I mean, what are the chances of seeing someone you know that well, somewhere where you'd surely never know anyone at all? Then the re-glance occurs and suddenly, you both come to the same conclusion. IT IS HAPPENING!
It's a damn small world indeed!
Four or five years ago, I hopped on a plane headed for Las Vegas. The goal was simple, I was going there to meet up with a few folks that I had only ever read about and what I'd read about them of course, was also written by them. You see, they were these 'Blogger' folks.
My first real addiction in the world of our blogs was Otis and I can admit that to this day, it's still the must read for me at every update. During the trip that year, Otis was one of the first of our type that I met. Funny enough looking back at it all now however, despite my desire to garner some form of literary knowledge from the master himself, I merely asked Otis a stupid question. All of that knowledge right there in front of me and what part did I want to get out of him? "Uh hey. Where's BadBlood?"
I've drank, dined, pokered, pai-gowed, let-it-ride, casually observed naked women, migrated, tried to move him to Canada, talked and once even, almost fell down with Otis ever since that day and quite honestly, I am a better man today for it all.
With the sale of The Cave just day's away now and the really big move across this great nation of ours looming closer and closer, I had written a bit about the only real home I'd ever known. It wasn't quite To the man buying my house exactly, instead it was this....
I know at first it seems a daunting task to buy a house, but fret not. For the journey that this little cave is about to take you on will surely surprise and amaze both you and your loved ones, hopefully for years and years to come. Ready for it or not, you've just found Home.
Now I'll warn you and hope that somehow it will sink in for you, but I already know that it won't. When you go into the crawlspace to check the sump pump every Spring, the third floor joist in is of the 2 x 10 variety, NOT a 2 x 8! I'm not exactly certain why that is but the fact remains, it sits a full two inches lower than the rest. You WILL hit your head on it every single time! The lump will become a hardened and permanent reminder over the years of course but somehow, you'll still manage to forget about that two inches before the next trip down into the dark.
Be ready for nature! Yes there will be Deer, Coyotes, the occasional Bear and the sound you will be hearing every night for as long as you are here, are the local Wolves. A full moon Summer night on the back deck with a Beer, Scotch or beverage of choice with your loved one, will allow the howls to enter your very soul. Usually as if by some magic, just when you think they won't be coming around that night, they'll be even closer than ever and the pulse of the cries can be felt in your breast. If you think of it, say Hi back for me once in awhile would you? Now of course, they aren't the only forms of nature you are going to see. You see, you now live in an area in the country a mere 20 minutes outside of town. This area is also known as, The Pet Store Recycle Bin!
This time of year is the best and worst of it all. Its just long enough after the season, where all of the joy and novelty of the new Christmas Pet has completely worn off. Be ready for Cats, Rabbits, Snakes and even the odd Gerbil to be making the treks across the front or back yard at any time. Hell, its nothing to sit out back and watch 'Hoots' the Barn Owl swing down into the grass, only to come up with a Hamster at this time of year. Oh and don't worry about the place getting over run with any of them either. Hoots has a way of taking care of that for you as well!
The reason that there are stairs all around the deck is simple. Actually, there are two reasons, but who really wants to hear about how stairs make it a much shorter fall for drunk friends? Once you set your butt down in the big comfy Muskoka Chair out there, I think you'll find the real answer. The idiocy of the mandatory rail height requirement makes it impossible to enjoy the view. All you can see of course, is railing. What I do for living is look for potential grey areas and plug them up. In the case of the deck and the view I wanted, I used the same grey area to my advantage. There is no law for stair railings, or for the amount of stairs a deck can have and VOILA! A deck with a view of Heaven.
Um... do you like Flowers? I hope so, because soon you are going to have them everywhere. Don't count on me to let you know exactly where they'll be because honestly, I don't really know myself. Every year my Wife and I, well, we did something kind of silly. We would plant a new "secret garden" somewhere on the property. Now as you can tell, we like our grass so don't worry. There will not be Geraniums popping up in the center of the yard in a week. But the outside perimeter of the property should be in full bloom by the end of April, then last until somewhere around the end of September. Don't ask me what the hell kind of flowers they are either, I haven't the faintest idea. I just know that every single year for 11 years in a row, I planted a whack of seeds and bulbs all over the place. I also know that they are very, VERY pretty. On a side note to the flowers, take the time when you can, to notice all the Ruby Throated Hummingbirds that love them too. When I was doing it right, they would land on me for a rest between feedings. Really a magnificent feeling.
Someday upon much closer inspection, you may have found a small drywall repair in the living room. Nothing big, just a small patch about 24 x 24 inches. A table leg made its way through there somehow and low and behold, I did my first solo work with drywall, tape and plaster. I looked at it myself last weekend and you know what? I think I did a pretty darned good job, even if I do say so myself. But I know its not perfect and someday I'm sure, you'll wonder who the hell did such a crap job on it. Now you know.
I left you a surprise too! Its my 'Welcome Home' gift to you Sir, if you will. You'll need to go out to the garage to find it though, consider it a "guy" thing from me, to you. You see once, long, long ago, that garage was full of more naked and partially naked women than almost anyone, (even AlCantHang!) could possibly imagine. I think it was a phase I was going through or something, possibly a third puberty. Anywho.... I felt the need to leave the very first picture I ever put up out there for you. Do with it what you will but maybe, just maybe, you may find yourself going through something similar yourself over the years. I just thought I'd help you get a head start on your own little project.
Any chance that you fish? You probably really don't want to tell anyone else, in fact, I think you're the first one I've ever told. But the creek that runs behind the house holds a little secret. Its probably the best Brook Trout fishing river in the area! I don't remember if you have kids or not but if you do, or know some that you really love, put some line on a stick and a small hook and a Grasshopper for your bait in the water with them. NOTHING fights like a one-pounder caught on a stick, right there in your own backyard! Now technically I know that its the neighbours backyard and all but honestly in your new Home, this is probably the one area that you'll find the most grey area imaginable to be honest. Yes you have neighbours and also yes, they live a fair bit away from you. But what you'll find out over the Summer is, they're damn fine people you'll want to be around more. So when its all done just right and everyone is comfortable with everyone else involved, the property lines become nothing but something you need to discuss, if you are in fact selling the property that they are on. Hopefully my friend, you won't have to worry about that, for a long, long time. This is also where I should probably mention to you, purely out of fairness and the goodness of my heart that your new Home, just happens to be the center point of the community. If its a lazy Summer evening and everybody feels like sitting around and shooting the shit over a cold beer and some Guitar music by the fire, it'll probably happen around your new fire pit!
I could write and write about your new Home for days, let alone hours. For you see your new Home is actually the first real Home, I've ever had to leave. Of course I've left dozens of buildings behind, but with nary a care in the world about any of them. I've gone through friends in more countries, cities and towns all over this big old flying rock than you good Sir, could probably comprehend. But through that all, I've never once had to leave my neighbours behind.
I'll be back for one last visit to the cave this coming Thursday and despite my best efforts to be a big boy and hold them back, I think I should probably tell you one more thing about your new Home. It is with the utmost of certainty that I can tell you that the recent water stains in the corner of the back deck, were from the last tears I ever shed at my Home.
My friend, enjoy your new Home. May the Hamlet of Utopia live up to your every expectation along the way also, as it certainly did for me.
My sincerest thanks for dropping by....