Saturday, January 05, 2008


It’s a word I’m quite fond of. It seems to envelope me lately, being back in the big city of Toronto ‘n all from my little village in Newfoundland.

I am sorta wearing my grandgirl lately, she packed her bags and landed up here

with me on Wednesday and I dropped her off home today but am picking herself and a pal up tomorrow. We have missed each other most dreadfully. She and pal are going to help me sort out my lockers (my stuff, my stuff, as George Carlin would have it) and then spend overnight up here in this fancy schmancy house I am house-sitting for four months.

I’m in the lap of non-owned luxury here down to the whirlpool tub and monster flat screen TV (my prior opinion confirmed, 400 channels and nothing to watch). Lots of security to protect their stuff. Remote controls everywhere, for light dimming and fireplace tuning and built in speakers everywhere music selection.

I’ve landed smack dab in the midst of someone else’s life. A very respectable life.

Family photos everywhere and well thought out pictures of places visited, hills climbed, mountains skied, seas swum. Being the under-the-rock-peeper that I am, I keep speculating on what secrets they must carry, mother, father and their now adult and living away from home children. One of each naturally. Male child older, naturally. It is so darn perfect this house. A kitchen that belongs to Martha Stewart, bathrooms designed for creative purposes involving candles and expensive lotions. Clean and organized but not neat enough to make you barf. Tilley people I call this couple and their like. You know, lots of khaki clothes and those hats that float and ne’er a cross word passing their lips. Ever.

I think if I had to live this life all the time I would quietly prop myself in a corner and open a vein and bleed out slowly.

Which confirms yet again why I was never marriageable material. I should have taken the alternative plunge at an early age in Ireland and become mistress to a series of wealthy old men who wouldn’t bother me much, being of pre-Viagra vintage, and been indulged in all my mad passions for writing and art and music and travel and eccentric conversation. But in the era I emerged in Ireland, I would have been ex-communicated both by my family and the Church. And that would have bothered me then, being pre-feminist and unenlightened as to the misogynistic ways of the Baby Jaybuzz 'n all and no clue as to the acquiring of the means to provide the afore mentioned lifestyle to, by and all for my little ol'self.

I spent today with a dear friend out in the 'burbs, admiring her new paintings, winding up late in a Scrabble Game in front of the fire with grapes and cheese and polish sausage and really good pale Christmas cake and chai. I am blessed.

And more on R when I process what happened on Tuesday night over dinner.


  1. House sitting sounds interesting! It must give you plenty of material for writing.

  2. Your house In Newfoundland sounds much more like you, filled with personality and interest.

    I am ingrigued by why you would have been ex-communicated.

    I am down in the Scottish borders staying in the country with my mum and sons this weekend.

  3. That must be really strange looking after someone's house. As you say not only a very different and incomprehensible lifestyle but the constant wondering about the not-so-perfect secrets beneath the perfect domestic interior. How to resist the constant temptation to pry?

    Doing your own thing courtesy of a series of wealthy partners sounds good, but I wonder if it would really be that ideal. Wouldn't it get rather self-indulgent without the reality check of having to earn money and rub along with the general public? I could name a few in that position who've gone distinctly batty.

  4. GM:
    Not really, the perfect lives of perfect people (and I mean that nicely) has absolutely no literary interest for me!
    In those days to live in sin was totally against Catholic teaching so I would have been "outside the sacraments" plus giving bad example to my younger siblings. I would have been banished. It happened to an aunt of mine.
    Yes, I peeked of course and there really is nothing, though there are a bank of locked filing cabinets in the study.
    In the era of which I speak in Ireland, there was very little advancement for women so tumbling into marriage was one choice, nunnery another and then the exotic life outside the pale. I was speaking of wealthy elderly married men who were always on the hunt to set up mistresses (I was approached after a theatre performance) and that seemed to be the only 3 options then. One friend of mine did avail of this and did extremely well for herself.
    I agree though, it does exert a cost as I wrote about in the series on porn/prostitution.


  5. You have a most strange lifestyle. I never realized 'house-sitter' was a viable occupation. I'm sure the British would assume you were just planning to rob them.

  6. Wow! That is quite a house! May you find a good well-lighted spot for reading and sipping tea. And of course, keep us posted!

  7. RJA:
    Ah, you don't know the half of it, RJA.
    House sitter is a very newly acquired occupation for me. "Stuff guard" is more like it. But oh what stuff!!

  8. Verna:
    No: I wouldn't use their 'real' house, just one I found on a picture service.
    My first attempt at this and it is going well so far....


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