Well, we’re homeowners again. We chatted around a large mahogany table, we signed our names many times, we heard the ka-chunk of the attorney’s stamp. The former owner and her daughter were there, which I somehow didn’t expect, since the last time we did this, the owners just sent their lawyers to sign for them. She’s a sweet old lady – smart and sensible too. I braced myself for freezing stares after they asked what we planned to do to the house and Ben carefully explained that we would be “adding up” (as in a second floor), delicately omitting the part about “razing the existing structure down to the foundation,” which could be understandable upsetting to someone who grew up or raised their kids in there. But they took it in stride. The lady is moving into a retirement place in town that they built since I left, so I guess she can keep an eye on things if she likes. Hopefully there won’t be any awkward glances in the post office. I’m not sure how I’d feel if I could hang around to see someone transform my childhood home, but actually I guess I wouldn’t mind as much now as I would have 20 years ago, and by the time I’m 80 -- really, I guess it would be good to have the damn plumbing leaks and snow shoveling off my hands and to hell with sentiment.
Now comes Fun Week in which we (a) sign our wills tomorrow morning so (b) Ben can go under the knife Wednesday to have his deviated septum fixed with at least one thing not to fret about, but first we (c) we meet with the architect tonight so he can show us his vision for what our house will eventually be, assuming of course that we can afford it, even though we’ve stressed that Budget is Job One. I keep imagining us driving up to the house with the second floor only just framed out and cheerily saying, “Thanks guys, looks great! Off you go! No more money to pay you! We like an open, airy feeling anyway!”