First blog post from my new home in beautiful, freezing cold Wisconsin.
I saw the constellation Orion for the first time in I don’t know how long the other night. While walking Mickey down the middle of a quiet, snow-covered street, our breath puffing out like steam engines in the brilliantly crisp, sub-zero temperature air, I looked up at the sky—and saw stars! Orion stood low in the southern sky like he always does this time of year, arm pulled back taught on his bow, his belt hanging at a jaunty angle. I felt like a little kid who couldn’t wait to run home and tell mom about this amazing discovery. Instead, I smiled, yelled at Mickey to get out of the neighbor’s garbage, and hurried to get back to the house before my face fell off. Note to self: Find scarf—and get long underwear. B-r-r-r-r-r-r-r-r.
Shabby, But Habitable
Our new home is shabby, but habitable. The lights, heat, and plumbing all work, and I get to park my car 10 feet from the back door (which made unloading it a breeze). The refrigerator is old, dirty, and not level, a couple of baseboards are missing from under the mostly crooked kitchen cabinets, and there’s a wide open space between the dishwasher (don’t ask about the dishwasher—it’s definitely a job for duct tape) and a wall that looks like a small set of drawers should reside. My cat Riley immediately claimed the space behind the dishwasher as his new hidey hole.
Although the neighborhood is crisp and clean and everybody had snow-blown or shoveled their sidewalks (except for my house), once inside I felt like I’d landed in the low-rent district of a college town. How a drunken college kid managed to punch a hole in the wall just outside the bathroom at knee level I will never know.
Almost Would Have Settled for a Shack
Nevertheless, when we first pulled in Saturday night after a harrowing drive through an ice storm, I was so happy to be ANYWHERE at that point I would have been grateful for a hovel with an outhouse. Although my little two-bedroom house is several notches above a hovel, it’s a long shot from anyone’s idea of a dream home. The former tenant, who is selling me her washer & dryer for $50, made a valiant effort to clean the place and make it look presentable.
Considering that I rented this place sight unseen from a Craigslist ad, I suppose it could’ve been a lot worse. It will do for now as I get my bearings in this new foreign land of ice fishing and snowmobiles.