us and the dogs, and head out again. Which will be in about six weeks.
But part of what has happened, happened because we were traveling. So,
by extension, it fits. Here's the story.
While we were away, someone stayed in our house. Without an invitation.
We arrive around 5:30 p.m. and our neighbors come out to greet us. One
is back from college (in Florida; we didn't know he was there!) and
another is back from getting dinner (Chinese takeout.) It's nice to
see people we know again ... to have conversations lacking the
requisite bio information (where are you from, how long have you been
on the road, are you retired, do you have children, etc.)
Don't get me wrong. I ADORE life on the road, meeting new people,
hearing their bios, telling mine. But, unless you spend a few days
with someone new, the conversations rarely become deep. Thought
provoking. Our neighbors tell us about the windstorms that swept
through the area (taking a few of our trees with it ... but we have
many, many more) and how our timers worked perfectly over the winter.
Lights on. Lights off. Lights on ... Lights off. There was no out-of-
the-ordinary activity in our house.
Deep. Thought provoking. We grin. We love it.
The dogs seem to grin, too, as we unleash them into their fenced back
yard. They ignore us as we walk along a portion of the fence, making
sure it's intact. They LOVE being home. And free.
We do, too. We hang the leashes up. We're finally untethered.
We throw open the doors and a pleasant, spring scent greets us. No
musty or rank greeting. Just a fresh, clean scent. I think it's the
infusers my girlfriend gave me before we went away. The whole house is
gentle with this aroma.
So we start the routine of returning the house to our living place.
Push the stove and refrigerator back against the wall and plug them
in. Turn the hot water heater back on. Remove the timers. Oh. What's
this? Why is this lamp on the floor?
And, oh, look at that, all of the pictures from the window ledge lay
scattered on the floor. And, OH, EWWW. What is that dried liquid
splattering down the front of our couch? LOOK AT THAT! A foot print.
About the size of a quarter. Four or five toes (I can't remember now)
and now I see, heavens, poop. Little lincoln logs here and there. A
trail of them, leading us through the house. Showing us where whoever
was here went while trying to get out.
And he went everywhere.
None of our window ledges display their pictures or books anymore (the
floor does). Stuff on top of window-front tables is scattered. A jar
of lentils from the kitchen window lay in the sink, next to a broken
coffee cup (that broke, obviously, upon impact from the lentils).
Whoever was here, tried heroically to get out. Going from window to
Somehow, he got in and somehow he got out. We don't know how. But he's
not here now.
We are. We're home.