It's a semi-warm spring Sunday afternoon, and dh and I are sitting in the living room discussing our future plans for The House. Sounds like a harmless pastime, but the truth is that she's whispering to us while we talk. (The House, I mean-she does that, you know. She whispers. A lot.) We think we own her, but the truth is, she owns us.
Proof positive of this, is that after a few minutes of silence, dh wanders over to a spot on the wall, under the stairs, that has peeling wallpaper, and casually, without saying a word or discussing it, begins to peel off the ugly 80's small print wallpaper. It comes off in a sheet, not in bits and pieces like you see on home improvement shows, but in one huge gigantic sheet of ugly pre-pasted monstrosity. And while dh peels, and The House sheds, the original plaster from the plaster and lathe construction begins to show, we all hold our breath. And when he's gotten a whole sheet off, and we can see actual wall, we let out a breath together, us and The House, as if she can finally breathe again, without that wallpaper there.
Some wives might get mad at the spontenaity of it all, but I know this means the beginning of a project we've discussed numerous times, and that dh knows what I want, and that we are mostly in agreement about what needs to be done, We, and The House.
The House, you see, whispers to me all the time. She has the final say, I'm afraid. Whenever I'm in the bookstore and I find myself drawn to the home improvement section, or I'm channel surfing and find myself on HGTV or PBS, or whenever I'm on the internet without business to conduct, she whispers, and I usually find whatever it is she's trying to tell me.
So while dh and I peel sheet after sheet of ugly wallpaper, and we find the sad shadowy remnants of the original crown molding that some previous idiotic owner removed for no discernable reason, we discuss paint colors, and we listen to what The House is trying to tell us.
Because, like an aged beauty queen who still wears her tiara to the county fair every year to show off to her friends, we don't really care if she's past the bloom of her youth. That very fact is what makes her so special to us.