Our Landlord Came To See Us

We were watching “The Witches of Eastwick.” It might very well be a fine movie, but I don’t think I watched more than 10 minutes of it at a time.

The gorgeous thing about where we sit in the living room is our big picture window. You can practically see the whole street, and what was happening in the world in front of us was much more entertaining. We watched this huge bellied man run by, swatting the air, tossing his phone into the grass, clutching at his bright orange shirt as he was chased by bees. We saw a car roll itself backwards a few houses on its own. We saw grubhub drivers roll up in a line around lunch time, parking right up and down our side of the street. Some of the best food in town is right here on my little corner of the world, and people from better neighborhoods were dispatching people to come fetch it.

How in the hell could we focus on a movie? That large picture window inspired more story lines than any film could have.

Then we saw my landlord roll up….

She rarely comes to visit, so I thought this was unusual. She bounced up the steps and knocked on the door.

She wanted to let me know that someone was going to be coming by to patch the cottage roof out back, but before he could that, she needed to clean to trees above it. “Just wanted to let you know I’m going to be running around the property with a chain saw,” she said with a little giggle and grin.

“Do whatever you need to do, I’m fine.”

“I just retired, so I’ll have more time to devote to my properties. I feel like I’ve neglected this one. I wasn’t really that aware of what it looked like,” said with a little reminisce on her part. “She definitely needs more attention…..I was thinking about the windows. Now, I’m not promising anything, but maybe we can have the windows replaced in the winter, or maybe in the spring?”

I was stunned.

She walked me towards the windows, precisely identifying how you can snip snip here, and snip snip there and release casement windows from cinder block. Then you put new windows in. Easily done. Not at all a problem.

“Oh, wow….With screens?” I wish I could have seen myself. I’m sure my eyes were wide, I’m sure my mouth agape. But, oh, to have seen my little boyish leap.

She laughed back, “Real windows with real screens.”

“I bought paint for the inside of the house.” I’ve never been worried about that. She told me from day one nearly 10 years ago when I first squatted on this spot that she didn’t care what I did to it. If she liked it, she’d keep it. “But, I was wondering if I might do some painting on the outside….”

Without a beat she said, “You can do whatever you want to this house.”

And I looked her back square in the eye, grinning with some beautiful realization of the Universe trying to get my attention, “Thank you….Thank you, I will.” (She may not read my blog, but the Universe certainly does).

I have this deep desire to bring this house back to life. And in the last couple of days we’ve been blessed. We’ve been able to get little things like a box of nails and spackle, to larger things like a shovel and a garden weasel. We’ve been blessed with fabrics and materials for curtains or upholstery, and we’ve been blessed with poppy….I certainly hope they can grow here, too.

And we’ve been blessed with a landlord that wants to help. For she turned to me as she was off to hack down trees, “You’ve always been my favorite tenant.”

This feeling of softness landed on me with a thud, feeling so unusually at ease that my heart skipped a beat. That’s what it feels like when you realize that you are emotionally, spiritually, physically, and geographically exactly where you are supposed to be. Now, that doesn’t mean you are clean, healed, or absolved of anything. Nor does it mean that a glorious future awaits you. It simply means that at this moment, right now, all things in my life are as they should be. They could be coming together, or they could be falling apart.

But, if you spend too much time thinking about the past, and too much time pondering the future, it isn’t likely you’ll spend very much time being  grateful for the present….Amen.

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