The Arrow

There are no answers; only choices.

Archive for the ‘home’ Category

A Laptop or a Grave?

Posted by thearrow on July 18, 2011

I’ve told my parents that I want to get them a laptop so that we can see each other over Skype. Also, my dad, who is almost bed-ridden due to a dislocated vertebrae, can read newspapers, watch videos, and in general not get bored. There was an initial enthusiasm about it, then my parents started fretting that it’s an expense, and then it all culminated this Saturday with my mom’s request: “Rather than getting us a laptop maybe you can help us buy a grave lot in a cemetery.”

I don’t know if I should laugh or not. I know she is genuinely concerned about us not being prepared at all for the inevitable, but it still came as a shocker to me. She’s more concerned now because one of her friends has just died of cancer at 62; my mom (who is 72) said her friend had bought a lot two years ago, when she was doing really well and had no major health concern.

Black humor aside, I can’t let death win and break our spirit. I don’t care about the cost, I’ll get them both the laptop and the grave lot.

And then we’ll celebrate being alive.

P.S. — If you’re curious why I filed this under the “Romanian culture” category, it’s because most of us (and especially my parents’ generation) are more concerned with death and doom than with how to make the most of our lives now. Pessimism is deeply woven into our DNA. Sigh.


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We Are Neighbors Now

Posted by thearrow on January 25, 2010

I’ve schlepped an enormous amount of stuff and I’m still not done. What’s funnier, we STILL don’t live together, but we do live in the same building. At least we’re neighbors. LOL. Between a busy time at work and moving, we haven’t found the time to install the bed frame and move the mattress from Steve’s place (a couple of floors up from his apartment).

It’s a good thing our other leases expire this weekend, so we’re bound to live together some time soon. In the mean time, people have been asking us all the time, so how is married life? And our answer has always been, well, we don’t know yet. Our marriage will officially start on February 1 🙂

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Evening Stroll through Georgetown

Posted by thearrow on January 19, 2010

We’ve had a few unbelievably nice days, really spring-like (just in time for my move), and I felt like I couldn’t cram myself in the metro and on the bus right after work. Where I wasn’t productive anyway, probably because I just wanted to be outside. And yes, this is another thing I will miss: my proximity to Georgetown and the fact that it was on my way home. It’s true that I’ll be relatively close to Bethesda (another super posh neighborhood). Not as cool as G-town though (ha ha).

Here are a few pics taken with my phone.

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Posted by thearrow on January 17, 2010

Purging crap that has accumulated for years and filled up all my cabinets and closets up to bursting point. What a great relief to get rid of it all and start again with only what’s necessary. Although, my definition of “necessary” does not overlap with Steve’s :). Still, I’m doing my best to keep it to that.

Whenever I throw another heap of stuff in the recycling bins or the trash can, I feel lighter, like a big load has been lifted off my mind. This is an exercise that I should do every year, except you don’t get the clarity of mind to see what’s no longer useful until a deadline (like moving) puts things into perspective and adds the requisite pressure for action.

I’ve ferried over all my clothes and books, my desk, my beloved dish chair, and I STILL have a ton of stuff to go through. I’m almost done with packing my kitchen and then I need to go through my piles of half-read magazines, other papers, pack more desk stuff, and clear a shelf I’m giving away.

I’m most happy with having found people interested in taking my furniture, as I’m keeping very little of it. No need to waste time to post pics online and deal with strangers. Of course, it helps that I’m giving it away for free, but in this case “free” comes with the great benefit of getting rid of it quite painlessly.

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The Disappearance of a Domestic Space

Posted by thearrow on January 12, 2010

My seven plus years in my Arlington apartment are coming to an abrupt end this weekend. Steve and I are finally moving in together. And, while he is only moving three floors up in his building, I’m changing states and moving to a Maryland suburb.

I will always think fondly of my apartment. It was a quiet place full of sunlight, a much-needed refuge from the turmoil of the better part of these past seven years. I will miss my peaceful and very pedestrian-friendly neighborhood, where everything I needed was within walking distance. I loved seeing it change over the years. I will miss the Lebanese shop behind my building, my trusted source of good feta cheese, and its employees, who, in time, became friendly and stopped looking at me as the crazy woman who buys feta in huge quantities.

But I am very looking forward to our new nest and the snuggling opportunities with Mr. Jinks. And Steve. I’m leaving with the sense that I have enjoyed my life here as much as I could and now it’s time to move on. One way or another, I would have had to leave around this time anyway.

I’m sitting in my still-intact living room, trying to wrap my mind around the fact that things will change radically in the next few days. But I can’t. So instead of that, I will indulge in the inevitable nostalgia that is already taking root and post some pics. And yes, I will miss the majestic oak tree in front of my window, the quiet companion of many weekends when I just wanted to be in my own world.

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Posted by thearrow on December 11, 2009

OK. I don’t know if Steve is going to be happy with me blogging about him, but this was hilarious, so he might be fine.

Steve is a tall guy with pretty masculine features, but he’s in touch with his feminine side and wears shirts with very playful, sometimes flowery patterns (on the cuffs).That’s one of the (many) things I love about him. Once in a while he’ll joke that on such and such occasion he’ll wear his pink dress. When his niece heard this, she said that boys don’t wear pink; Steve chuckled that she didn’t say that boys don’t wear dresses.

We were looking at an apartment yesterday night and I noticed the nice hardwood floor. The realtor said that the rule is, no high hells on it at all. Steve was bummed: “so that means I can’t cross-dress at home!” And the realtor didn’t get that it was a joke and she let out a loud “okaaaay!” I was almost suffocating with laughter. Poor woman. I can totally understand why she thought that might be true; when you meet gazillions of new people all the time, you can’t have enough brain bandwidth to figure them out.

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Mary’s House and Garden

Posted by thearrow on August 27, 2009

The fairy-tale house where a chipmunk lives under the steps, birds come to the countless bird feeders, and bumble bees delight in sweet nectar. Oh, and where my boyfriend, S., grew up 🙂

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