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Medium Dawn Felagund of the Fountain

Seven People. Three Big Dogs. One Single-Wide Trailer.

The (Cyber) Bag of Weasels

bread and puppet

"About as much fun as a bag of weasels"...when I first saw this Irish adage, it made me think of the life of a writer: sometimes perilous, sometimes painful, certainly interesting. My paper journal has always been called "The Bag of Weasels." This is the Bag of Weasels' online home.

Seven People. Three Big Dogs. One Single-Wide Trailer.

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There is a scene in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation where both sides of their family descend on their house at once. The doorbell rings and becomes a deep-booming bell tolling as if for a death or an execution. Everyone in the family stiffens in anticipation as the bell resounds through the house.

Bobby and I have been impersonating that bell all week because, in probably less than an hour, both sides of our family will arrive: two sets of parents, Amiah, and a Great Pyrenees, all added to the two people and two dogs that inhabit our single-wide trailer.

In reality, they won't be as bad as the Christmas Vacation family, and I'm looking forward to them being here, but I won't lie that I worry about myself as an introvert and how well I will handle a week of five extra people in the house with no room to escape to (because Bobby and I are sleeping on the couch so that our guests can have proper bedrooms).

In good news, this forced us to finish getting the house ready. We've been working about ten hours a day since my return from New York. That is why the video is not up yet! I'm sorry; if I can carve out some time while everyone is here, then it is a top priority. But ... the house is now ready. I am writing this from my study with like bookshelves and things and no skyscraper of boxes piled behind me. The house looks beautiful. I took a bunch of pictures of it but need to hook up Dropbox on my phone to my account so that the photos go automatically to my computer. And this should mean no more long days of manual labor. We'll have the fence to install once the materials are finished--the fencing is being made by a local logger with trees harvested right here in Vermont--but that's the only big job left.

It hasn't been all work (although it has been MOSTLY work). Last night, we took our kayak to the north beach at Willoughby and launched at sunset, paddled out just far enough that we were comfortably in the middle of the lake, then watched the nearly full moon rise over the mountains. A cabin on the western shore was shooting off fireworks, so we got an impromptu fireworks show over the water. It was actually chilly. Sorry, everyone to the south who is suffering under that "heat dome"! One of the differences between Maryland and Vermont is that you are allowed to use the natural spaces at night--in Maryland they close at dusk--because the assumption is that you are enjoying the natural spaces at night and not up to something nefarious like dealing drugs or burying a body.

They should be here in less than an hour! Wish me luck!

This post was originally posted on Dreamwidth and, using my Felagundish Elf magic, crossposted to LiveJournal. You can comment here or there!

  • I do wish you luck! It's hard enough having one roommate, let alone a houseful. And such a hefty dog!

    then watched the nearly full moon rise over the mountains.

    • Thank you! Thankfully, all has gone well so far. The biggest pain the neck has been my puppy Gwen, who has taken the house full of people and sleeping in the living room as an excuse to start crying in her crate again. She started so early this morning and annoying me so badly that I just dragged her crate--with her in it!--out onto the deck, where she could whine away at the trees.
  • Good luck!

    Congrats on finishing the house, too.

    Repeating Shirebound: oooooh!

    It made me nostalgic for the week we spent at my grandma's cabin every summer. I've never been on the lake after nightfall, but standing or sitting on the shore and stargazing, sometimes with a bonfire…
    • The stars here are definitely incredible! We had an evening like that at a friend's lake cabin up here: a bonfire followed my cricking all our necks to spot satellites and shooting stars. :)

      Thanks for the congrats and luck! So far, all has gone well ...
  • Dawn, it sounds absolutely wonderful! Well, now that a bunch of hard work is done!

    Good luck with all your peeps underfoot! At least they mostly get along?
    • Yes, thankfully, they do! They're out on the deck right now, chatting up a storm! It is going to be 100 degrees in Baltimore today, and it is in the 70s here, so they are enjoying themselves muchly!

      All has gone well so far, and we're at the halfway point so ... *fingers crossed*
  • Your new place sounds wonderful, even though it will be crowded with all of the extra two and four footed guests. A kayak at moonrise sounds just perfect and exceptionally beautiful. Love the fireworks addition. I'm absolutely certain you have moved to the right place and that you and Bobby will find some true happiness in Vermont.

    - Erulisse (one L)
    • I think so! It certainly seems a better fit than Maryland had become. It's much easier to do the things we love here, and the nasty attitudes that come from too many people crammed into too small a space is good to get away from.

      On that note, my family's holiday here is going remarkably well! :D
  • I've just read through all your posts that I missed while busy with my retirement and other things the past couple of months.

    I think you did good in letting your students know that you were going to be leaving well ahead of time. Even though it's stressful as an introvert having to deal with numerous hugs and speeches from people, I believe you'll feel better for having done it that way. I gave my boss and co-workers a year's notice of my retirement but they told all the patients as well and I had to talk to many people much more than I would normally like during the past year. But now I am glad I did have the chance to do it. The warmth I felt from all of their good wishes, etc. overshadowed any discomfort I felt.

    Bringing Alex with you was probably also a great idea. You would have missed him terribly if you had left him behind, I'm sure, even though the task must have been fairly testing. I'm afraid I would have felt like Bobby but my husband is worse, so I probably would have had to do the digging up anyway. However, not to worry...this hasn't been an issue yet.

    The two photos you posted earlier show the most beautiful scenery, with such a peaceful ambience. I'm sure you'll be very happy with your new house and its location. And I can't wait to see tons of new pics once you have everything set up.

    I don't envy you having to put up so many people in one trailer! At least you can go outside and into the new house if you need some peace and quiet. Let's hope you will have a few minutes at least every once in awhile to get off by yourself.
    • Congrats again on retirement! That's so exciting. Are you planning anything fun to do?

      I think you did good in letting your students know that you were going to be leaving well ahead of time.

      I had to. I have seen staff members up and leave, either without telling them or giving them a day or two notice. Many of them have been left time and again by adults they are told they should trust; I didn't want to be another person added to that list. I needed them to have time for their goodbyes, but I needed time for my goodbyes too! I loved a lot of those kids and think about them often. They deserve to be treated decently by staff who have relationships with them, as I did with many of them.

      My students were always needy and intense and exhausting, so I didn't have many issues related to my introversion due to leaving per se. If anything, I made myself enjoy my time with them and be easier on them and myself. We played a lot of Uno in those final days! It was sometimes tiring to do so, but it was tiring to teach them too, and Uno was more fun. That's just the way they are.

      Wrt Alex, it was more physically taxing than I expected, but I'm really not bothered by dead bodies and such, so I wasn't grossed out or bothered, even when he began to smell a little. :) It was worth it to have him with us.

      At least you can go outside and into the new house

      The trailer is the house! I have no escape! :D So far so good, though ...
      • Thanks! We did a couple of major things right away: paid off the rest of our mortgage and filled in the swimming pool (that nobody had used for years and was costly to run for no reason).

        We had planned to go on a trip to Algonquin Park for some hiking and possibly an overnight stay (camping if we felt brave enough to fend off the black bears) but it didn't come to pass. The weather got suddenly way too hot to want to go anywhere. Maybe we can do it in September.

        Oh gosh, I am sorry. I don't know how I got the idea you were staying in a trailer temporarily while your house was being renovated or something...I must have confused you with one of those reno TV shows. But hey! There's nothing wrong with living in a trailer and it could come in handy if Trump wins the election and you want to escape across the border up here. I'm watching the DNC right now as I'm typing this. Crazy stuff all around. I think if I was a U.S. citizen I would have been a Bernie supporter, but let's hope Hillary can pull it off even with a crazy shit show happening all around her. Okay, that's enough of that. I can't even vote!
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      • It's supposed to be 96 degrees here today, and we keep saying to each other, "soon we'll be in Vermont and we'll be chilly!". :-)

        Even extroverted me isn't sure how I'd handle that many people for a week! Mostly because I have routines that I'm always trying to work around guests--whenever we have people over I'm always sneaking off to do yoga or knock some items off my to-do list. I'll probably be doing that when we come to visit you, too. :-P
        • I'm wearing a sweater right now! A light one ... but I think someone wearing a sweater in Maryland today might die!

          The guest room is on the completely opposite side of the vastness that is our single-wide trailer, so escape is very possible. :) This visit has gone remarkably well, although I have had trouble getting things done, not only from not having access to my space and disruption of routines but due to sheer exhaustion--very much an introvert thing there too!
      • The lakes in the evening really require long sleeves (unless you're Bobby who sits next to them in a swimsuit and T-shirt!) It will be a new moon when you guys are here, so no stunning moonrise but bright, beautiful stars!
    • I agree, re: over-regulation! But if you were to ask why, IF you could get an answer from someone, my bet would be that answer would be 1) people using public spaces for nefarious purposes, whether not-actually-nefarious (homeless people sleeping in parks) or holy-crow-nefarious (all the dead bodies found in Leakin Park) or 2) liability because they're afraid some dumbass will fall off a rock in the dark and sue the state because that's what people do in that region.
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