the end of exile

Tonight I'll play CDs again, light up the stove
and pretend
The other place is just a site to me, a dream or just a fantasy
reminding me that I am free
Homeward bound
At last I am
Homeward bound
—where my back ain't achin'
—with no late-night fakin'
—with no sawdust waitin' silently for me


hot tuna

The guy who did the shingling also does fishing. He gave us some beautiful tuna.



Suppertime at Payne's dock.


summer paintings

One of these pictures was painted every year at my kitchen table. It was always July—the tiger lilies were in bloom, and the hydrangias. The last few years there have been no paintings, because I haven't been on the island in July. The watercolors faded. But this year Neruda took them away and freshened them all with new paint. They are stacked now in the new house, awaiting walls.


signing off

So first my brother was here, and then he left, and Peter showed up. Somehow, with real carpenters around, I didn't dare do more than cleanup, dump runs, lumber yard runs, ordering, cooking (my fave: "What's for lunch?") and paying everybody. But now, alone at last, with no one around who can do it better and faster with more appropriate tools, I can muddle through myself. As his last act, Peter showed me how to attach L-bead. Y'all know what L-bead is?


electrify me

The electricians are due today. I don't really have the light fixture thing together, so unless UPS is unexpectedly speedy I may have to learn to do wiring myself. Oops. Contractor falls down on job. Wedding planner doing a little better.



So a passerby looked at this and said, "It's so wonderul that you're restoring that old cottage." Take that, Historic district Commisssion!


so what?

So it's raining. So who cares? Do I care? I got a roof, I got windows, doors, I almost got siding. I got a gravel drive. Rain on me, baby.
Just keep September 23rd clear, OK?


sunset at the almost ok corral

It's getting to be that time of year again, the time when the days get shorter and the nights get cool, when sunsets start to look like Mt. Pinatubo (sp?) blew again and when Islanders get crazy. I must be an Islander. Or maybe I'm Mt. Pinatubo. Or maybe they're the same thing.


received wisdom

The Most Powerful Woman on the Island lectures the wolf cubs about their marriage.


a big deck

Carpenter Cub finishes the back deck just in time for the shinglers to move around the building. The other marks are harder to hit, with the interior walls going up slower than I'd like. The tarp is sun protection. But it feels like fall.



Tips from Claudia: When you have a tarpaper shack, choose potted plants to match. Colius can be a perfect choice, if it matches the pot from the dump.
However, since the guys got back from fishing for tuna and are beginning to shingle the north side today, there will be less tarpaper than before.



word from angelina

Received the following postal card from Angelina in New Russia, a hamlet in the Adirondacks:
"Je pense que je vais acheter une maison dans cette village. J'avais vue une route nomme de Stars et Stripes ici avec une grande Victorian. Ah, mes reves sont realizes!
Vous ete jalouse, je sais. . ."
Yeah, but she'll be awfully jealous when she sees my white farmhouse kitchen sink—which used to be hers.


view from here

My brother is leaving. He wants to go back to his own life. Who can blame him? I'd like to go back to my own. His effort has been heroic: a totally functional house trimmed out like a wedding cake. He did it nearly single handedly. There's a lot of stuff left to do on the interior—the fun part for him—and hopefully he'll come back to do it. But my main man is departing, and I will miss him.