(You know, come to think of it... my house is kinda creepy looking- okay, I know it's just this picture that makes it look creepy, but I kinda like it)
In 2000 I bought this house that I live in. Yes, it's a freakin' shack of a house, and I will be paying for it till I'm 93 in my next life- but it's mine damnit! Anyway, that year we ("we" being my (now) ex fiance (Brett) & I) bought it in the late winter (March I think), and planned to move in by May that year. The people we bought it from were building one of those pre-fab homes, but needed a place to live till the house was ready. What did we do? We rented the house back to them.
See, the downstairs has a studio apartment and a full basement, so we thought we'd just live down there for a month. Those pre-fab homes can go up in a matter of days, so we didn't really think anything of it- plus we were getting $ from them. So, we move into the studio apartment thinking that if we were going to do any renovations, what better way was there to figure out what was needed than to live in the space. Seemed like a good idea at the time.
May came and went, and so did June... July... August... and September..... you know what also came? Rain. Yes, it rained like every single day of the summer that year, for real. I think there were 4 sunny days in total. Not even kidding. So we were stuck living in a tiny, dark, damp, little space in our own house for about 6 months. To say this caused stress would be a HUGE understatement. Throw in the fact that for a few months our friend Bill and his dog, Kaya, were living with us too. Seriously tight quarters down there. All I wanted to do was unpack and get on with life.
I was sick of being asleep on my day off and having the wife of the couple upstairs waltz down to the basement and do laundry. She'd flip on the overhead light (UGH!) and stomp down the stairs and be all like "oh! I didn't realize anyone was down here, sorry!"... then she'd continue over to the washer and dryer and start doing the laundry. Throw in the fact that every week they'd say "we're expecting to move out by the end of next week"... EVERY WEEK.
At the end of October 2000 we finally moved upstairs. Moved into a house that had no floors, just sub flooring; a kitchen sink that would leak a gallon of water every night (till we figured out it just needed a 5¢ washer replaced); a serious leak coming through the sub-floor of the bathroom into the basement (which we quickly, once in the main house, figured out was only because the idiot former home owners didn't properly caulk around the shower door and the water was dripping out of the shower, down the side of the tub, and through the floor; a bathroom sink that didn't work (because they failed to connect it- at all); windows that wouldn't open (because the idiots painted them shut); and some of the most ridiculous electrical wiring we had ever seen.
The first thing we did was start on the flooring so we could move furniture & everything else in. Brett was fantastically handy with that sort of thing. For real, I don't think there was anything he couldn't build or fix, it was more than a little impressive. Getting him to actually FINISH all that he started, well, that's another story... I'm not gonna say anything bad about him though. I love that guy, seriously. He's one of the coolest people I know- still. Brett and I were just meant to be friends- everything beyond that was wishful thinking because we got along so well for so many years. We're still good friends. Anyway.. where was I? ....... Right... flooring. We went with Pergo® floors, "antique pine" to be exact.
One evening I decided to make a run to the grocery store. We were moving along quickly with the flooring, so I figured I had the chance to leave to get food. Upon arrival at the grocery store I noticed a cute little girl dressed like a princess. Not only did this not phase me in the least, but I kind of expected it. See, I know that sometimes kids want to wear stuff like that at random, but on this island where I live it's almost like it's a requirement for some of them. Like some freakish "crunchier than thou" code that many families follow here. I think they get made fun of by each other if any of their kid's socks actually match. Don't get me wrong, I am 110% behind self expression, imagination, and having fun... but I don't think it's cool to look down on others who don't follow that way of life. Believe me, it really is like that here.
After a stroll down by frozen foods, a brief interaction with a vampire that couldn't reach a box of Cheerios® on the top shelf of the cereal aisle, and a handful of zombies... I realized I was missing Halloween. How was this possible?! I had always LOVED Halloween. Most years I would start planning my costume no later than August... that year... I had other things on my mind. I quickly went to the aisle with candy and snatched up a few bags of Reeces Peanut Butter Cups and went to pay and get home.
I walked through the front door yelling for Brett, I couldn't believe we were missing Halloween. I ran to the basement and ripped open the box with kitchen stuff in it to find a large bowl so I could empty the candy into it, and then informed him I was putting it by the front door for when trick-or-treater's showed up. I went to the back of the house where the bedrooms are and continued with my job of putting clothes in the closest & drawers. Brett was out in the livingroom working on the flooring, and having a hell of a time because our saw had broken and he only had one other option...
5 silent minutes later I heard the sound of giggles and footsteps coming up the stairs to the front door.... and then I heard three noises all at the same time. A knock, a chainsaw, and blood curdling screams... then rapid footsteps racing down the stairs. I ran out to the livingroom to find Brett standing there with a chainsaw (his "one other option" till morning to get some more floor cut) laughing his ass off.
|click to enlarge|
So, you see, every year as Halloween approaches.... I usually don't bother buying candy. I KNOW we won't get trick-or-treater's here. On the years where I do have candy, for one reason or another, as soon as I leave the house, the first kid I see out with a parent gets the whole stash. I tell the parent why, but I just tell the kid it's 'cause they have the "Best. Costume. EVER!" It's a win/win.
This year, I am gonna buy some candy, it has been 10 years, and one never knows. Well, I'll either buy candy or borrow a chainsaw... you know... for another 10 or so more years of not having to answer the door on October 31st.