Two weeks after we arrive I email my friend. ”We’ve looked and looked and there isn’t anything!”
Later I call my mother with the same news. ”We’ve looked and looked and there isn’t anything!”
“Don’t you think you need to give it more time?” she asks. “It’s a house.”
A week later there is an update.
“We’ve found it!”
“Golly! That was quick!” writes my friend.
“Golly! That was quick!” says my mother.
“Really?” I ask.
When you have nothing to do, nothing else to do, it can happen like that.
Having nothing else to do, or only one thing to do if you are reading the other way, is focusing. Although it has its detractors and is unpopular because most people are busy, if at all possible I highly recommend it; three weeks with only one thing to do is like five years of normal time.
In this case, not having found a house after two weeks felt like twenty years; extra years added for regular boredom. That is the only part of the formula that is random. If you use the formula at home you may get a different result depending on your ability to do things like wait.
When we did find something after days and days, after many days,
nearly twenty -
it felt like the earth had changed its axis and ice was melting after 40,000 years. It was like turning a page on a calendar and arriving in the next millennium.
At last!!!! After all this time!!!! I thought.
To others I explained: “No, it was a whole three weeks.”
Unfortunately my description of it is longer than expected. Out of the whole experience I would say that is the only down side.
Clock strikes nine.
“Oh look at the time …”
“Shall we go to bed?”
Pete is usually first to get under the covers. I know because I always find him there. I did again this night.
I start the climb in; the bed we have erected is huge and seems to have no end. It is a double bed with a single bed on one side and they are pushed together, squeezed, inside a room just small enough. We are making do and this thing is part of it.
“I’ve looked and looked and there isn’t anything. I’ve looked everywhere. But I can’t find it. I can’t find our house.”
Pete is patient and believes that if we find our house in the next twelve months we will be doing well. But he loves me and trusts me so he makes it easy.
The days are flying by. ”I think we need to ask our house to call us.”
“Okay” he says.
Silence; faint sound of question floating upward, hovering over hill and valley, toward a path blazed by an old star.
The next morning our agent calls. She has made herself ours. Our agent is all things to us: aunt, mother, grandmother. Friend, bestie, bff. Forever companion, always correspondent, constant gardener.
“I’m just calling to see whether you’ve found anything ….” She sounds desperate. She often does. It’s why we can’t hang up on her.
“No, nothing since you called yesterday” but she can’t hear me very well nor I her because there is an electrician in the fuse box of our temporary home who is fixing the wiring and teaching me electronics.
She continues: “… because if you could just go up a little bit more (she means in budget) there’s something …”
Yet the line is so bad and there are too many things happening that we say goodbye with no new understanding of anything except that she will call again in a week which means tomorrow.
But I still have only one thing to do so after the electronics I am back on this looking at everything on her books. Anything that could fit the description she never gave me.
” … if you could just go up a little …”
I see one house I have noticed before but not considered. Now all I notice is a garden.
I schedule a drive by for that moment. With only one thing to do I am always ready.
It looks gorgeous from the street. But I am very bad at decisions so I just stare at it from the car and decide against it.
Luckily the next day I make an appointment.
It is lovely. After a few days Pete sees it too so it is just the three of us. Our agent is nearly always close.
It is so lovely I can only pick faults and decide firmly against it.
But for the next few days I can think of nothing else – even when I am not, I am thinking: the house, the house, like I am under a spell.
I view other properties but it is like walking through mud. My heart is gone. I am like ghost walking through mud viewing other properties.
One day, absolutely sure about not being sure, I go back and stand in the garden.
The sun is bright and peeping out in flashes from behind clouds but it lights the garden like a pro. I walk to the back and stop. In front of me dozens of bees are lazily swarming rosemary hedges the owners have kindly planted.
I sit on a bench the owners have kindly placed under a tree.
A little while later I make a call.
“I’m standing in the garden of our new house” I say and Pete laughs. He always laughs.
“Where are you?” he asks and I tell him.
“I will camp in the back garden. It’s’ beautiful here.”
Later I ask our agent if this was the house she was referring to when she called that day.
“No” she says.
In a language we are not to understand only to respond to, we took a call one morning, bright and early, while the sun was out, a morning after a single question took an old star trail. It went something like this:
Get here before the bees have supped, before the pollen has been spilt, before the flowers have been impregnated to reproduce before your eyes come the spring!
One day I will show you the flowers.
Beautiful image: Spring garden house beautiful wallpaper