Ah, the joys of moving back to the town one grew-up in. To be even more specific, ah, the joys of moving back into the house one grew-up in. We’ll be with my mom for an indefinite period of time (I’m hoping this isn’t the first time she’s hearing about this…if so, surprise, mom) and so we’ve moved all of our clothes and precious belongings to her house. The precious belongings, in no particular order of importance, include the children, the pets, and the coffee pot. The first few days back home my mom and I spent it reorganizing books from my childhood and throwing away things like nail polish and Bath and Body Works perfume from the late 1990s.
Just in the few short days we’ve been back in the area I have run into a friend’s mom at the grocery store, telling her that I was back, living with my mom. In retrospect I probably owed her a little bit more of an explanation than that and the rumor mill may or may not be churning (as if anyone cares). Then, another day, Marcus and I were sitting down for lunch at the outside space of one of our favorite restaurants and friends of ours happened to see us. They drove up and stopped for a chat making us remember what it’s like to live in a town small enough for something like that to happen. Friends and family are the big reason why moving back to Fredericksburg will be bearable.
Take the other day for instance. Marcus spent one of his recent mornings at the City of Fredericksburg offices in order to get permits for the work we’re currently doing on the Cottage House. While there, speaking with one of the building inspectors, the father of one of my childhood friends (we’ll call him “Papa John” to protect the not-so-innocent) popped his head into the office and proceeded to tell Marcus that if we didn’t get our things in order they were going to condemn Sligo. Marcus texted me to tell me this and I was livid. How dare they condemn the house now! I even got my mom riled up about it and we both fumed over the audacity of the city to put us in such a situation. I texted Marcus back “Uh…why didn’t they condemn it ten years ago?!” to which Marcus replied “Papa John = Your friend’s dad.” I even texted him back with a curt “And?!” and then it clicked. Oh yes…Papa John was and is a kidder and if you can feel me cutting my eyes at Papa John then you would be correct.
I saw Papa John earlier today, walking along Caroline Street in Fredericksburg as the girls and I were driving through the city and I almost yelled at him but couldn’t because of the traffic behind me. I regret the decision to not hold-up traffic because it could have been great: “Go ahead! Do us a favor! Condemn my house!” and then I would have peeled out, laughing maniacally while the girls sat in the back worried for their little lives (which is frequent, I’m sure). I’ll just have to settle for writing about it now and honestly, funny enough, it’s moments like these that are helping me work through moving back.