A few nights ago, I opened the refrigerator doors for the final time in the old house. All the food was gone in preparation for cutting the main breaker. I was at last ready to say my farewell to a home that sheltered me and my son for fourteen years - the longest I have ever lived in one place in my life.
I am sentimental for the times and the memories of living in the little place beside the creek, but I am not sentimental about the dwelling itself. It did not start out as a bad house, but I lived in it far, far past its expiration date. Knowing I was going to build a new home, I refused to put any money into repairs aside from what was absolutely essential. Consequently, the deterioration of the place picked up speed and determination as it careened wildly downward in accordance with the second law of thermodynamics: all things tend toward disorder. In this case, one could safely add the third law of thermodynamics: all disorder is accompanied by mice droppings and spiderwebs. I like organic, but somehow nature got the very wrong idea it could move in with me. Trust me, there is such a thing as too much organic living!
That is all past now and I am almost settled in the new home. I have a lot of items waiting in the wings for the final sort - the "too good to throw away/not yet emotionally ready to give it to Good Will" phase of divestiture. But it will be quite easy to not move a single thing into the new home that does not serve me now.
The saddest thing, the only sad thing in all of this, is Duke, my 14 year old elder dog. He has always lived beside the old house. He started out his life here safely enclosed in the back porch when he was a fat butterball puppy. Otherwise, the coyotes would eat him while I was at work. As he grew into the wonderful watchdog and companion and good old farm dog that he is, he lounged about on the back porch in the coldest of winter, and slept faithfully before the front door all other times. He has known no other home. He refuses to take up vigilance on the front porch of the new house, though Jake sleeps there. When Dan comes to knock down the old place, I am not sure what impact it will have on the dear old Duke. Change is difficult at any age, but when elderly, it can be traumatic.
Otherwise, it is absolutely wonderful to be living in such a nice little home here in the bend of Spirit Creek.