Once more into the unknown, dear friends…

The unknown being that strange limbo occupied by those teetering souls who are in the act of trying to sell the very homes in which they live. Trying to pull the only rug they’ve currently got from under their own feet. Sound like I’m not down with the program, dunnit?

The old manse went actively on the market last weekend with the first Open House since August, and a realtors-only OH 2 days later. Next one’s coming up April 2nd (not the 1st, happily – if we’re going to be made fools of, pray the Goddess it ain’t over real estate).

Our house, in the middle of our street

And, oh mama mia, did we clean! I felt like my hands were going to come off at the wrists. Sibling got her daunting collection of clothing and other belongings actually sorted, boxed, shelved, a vast achievement.  Her boudoir looks quite charming. I did the basement – – or rather, the basement nearly did me. The purely functional, unfinished cellar of a 140 year old 3-story house has a reality all its own. It’s the foundation, the house’s great solid foot in the original earth. Here the hole was dug in the undeveloped wooded glade back in 1875. The house sits on it like tiers of acrobats on the shoulders of the bottom strongman. The house’s minute shifts and shrugs, the passage of feet and living movement in the floors above, send down subtle dust obeying gravity, seeking its level. The basement accepts and supports.

I suppose that dwellers in buildings in places like London, where any cellar is likely to be cheek by jowl with evidences of century on century of human habitation – old pots, old bones, old walls, old pavements long buried – have a somewhat different attitude toward their basements. They know they’re part of a palimpsest.

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