Radiogurl a la Carte

2003-10-24
Home Sweet Mortgage

I made an offer for a house tonight. It wasn't new and fashionable, nor one of the flashy old Victorians that so many ladies' magazines seem to favor. It was a modest two-bedroom Craftsman-style cottage that will need some time and serious TLC to restore.

The home was being sold by the owner's son, because she could no longer care for herself. Past the threadbare carpet and the out-of-date paneling, I saw something extraordinary. There were areas that needed repair, to be sure, but everything was neat and shouted that here lived someone who loved. Faded quilts hugged both beds, hand stitched and aged to a gentle warmth that had nothing to do with function or thermometer. A few trinkets were on display, the sort that said I don't need to be ostentatious. I have the love of my family, and that's more than most people will ever know. Homemade and mismatched calico curtains hung over the windows, gleeful proclamation that this was no sterile showcase or museum.

It wasn't a house. It was a home, in every sense of the word, and clearly had been for a long time. I could almost hear the children giggling and smell the aroma of home cooked meals that summoned a family to the dinner table before pagers and cell phones were a spark in anyone's mind.

It will take a lot of work to restore the place. It isn't in the high-fashion part of town. It will never make magazine covers. I won't become a famous and tempermental designer who makes millions telling people how great she is for rescuing and restoring a piece of history.

I don't care.

It has a broad front porch that I hope will hold a swing eventually, where I can sit with a friend and watch the sunset over the mountains. It has a mantle where I can hang Christmas stockings for my grandchildren. If it becomes mine, I will do my best to see that it remains a home for several more years.

If I get the house, my neighbors and friends are invited to sit on that porch with me. Hope y'all like lemonade.

Before - After

In the grander scheme of things, no soul can truly be replaced. Each one of us has a place in the universal tapestry. We each contribute our own color and texture. When one thread is snipped too soon, it distorts all the threads around it. Other lives can unravel and tear. If the wrong thread is ripped away, the whole fabric of life becomes dangerously fragile.
- LeiLani, aka Radiogurl aka Bright Opal (1957 - )