Friday, November 18, 2011

Living at Home

Ciera just said, “more lovin' for the shovin'.” I think she meant, “more cushion for the pushin'.” Either way that's polite dinner conversation. Especially when I go out of my way to make a beautiful dinner and get a nice bottle of red wine to drink with my asparagus gnocchi.

Apartment living. It's what I do now. I was looking at a map of Seattle today, and I called it home in my head. That was compounded by a further oddity. I tried to find my first home and I couldn't. It just seemed so distant. I don't know why but I thought to myself, “if I look at a map of where I grew up I will be able to remember what it was like to be young again. Just for a moment, be a child on my way to school.” But that didn't happen. Instead I became lost in the grid, looking at familiar names without context, wondering where my home was.

Reno was set ablaze today. It made national news. People I went to high school with were evacuated to my high school and my gym was all over the national news circuit. And I couldn't help but feel that if the developers hadn't shirked on costs for safety the fire wouldn't have eaten 20 homes. The dry cheat grass covers the hills and dies by June. For the rest of the year it is tinder covering the hills, waiting for a spark. The late autumn winds in Reno kicked up and a stray spark from a downed electrical wire or maybe a campfire lit by a homeless man or maybe just a tossed cigarette turned into a blaze. The blaze reminded me how much I wanted to go home, but like I said my home is in Seattle now.

And its wet here. Sometimes by weather. Other times by Ciera's design. Or rather, her lack of. This morning I woke up as I normally do and hopped in the shower. Ciera woke with me and said she would make a pot of coffee. I was relieved to not have to make my own pot of coffee. It's the little things in life. I got out of the shower and was drying myself off when I heard a knock on the bathroom door. It opened just a slit, and Ciera's hand shot through it, grabbing a towel and quickly shutting. I was left there, half stunned, and very reticent to see what had happened in the kitchen.

I tossed on some pants and opened the door. Ciera was frantically wrangling a bath towel, a dish towel, and paper towels to clean up a very large spill of coffee all over the counter and floor. She said, “I didn't put the coffee pot in all the way and it dripped everywhere.”

I helped her clean it all up. When we sat down and ate our oatmeal she confided something to me, “I didn't even put the coffee under the drip. I just set it by the sink. I turned on the stove and put the oatmeal on and I even thought to myself I hope I did everything right. Then I crawled into bed and waited for you to finish your shower. I woke up and there was coffee everywhere. I didn't want you to know so I grabbed the towel. But I didn't even put the pot under the drip.”

I couldn't help but laugh. She had tried to hide if from me like a child. And like a child she had believed that if she had cleaned it up she could keep it all a secret. But I'm sure I would have noticed that there was no coffee. Apartment living. Oh the minor adventures of living with somebody. How quaint.