Maybe it's the onset of summer, or maybe I just never paid attention until now. Our garage, which smelled like my paternal grandparents' garage in Paramus, New Jersey--a musty gray smell that included not only their car, but also the metal tracks of the garage door, the big freezer, a few tools, and that concrete floor that got cold enough at night--no longer has that scent. It smells as if it's freshening up, the high winds of recent days pushing wisps through the small screens at the bottom, near the door in the back. I never recall it smelling like that at any other time. Does this place anticipate our intentions? Does it know that Mom and Dad are off to Vegas on Monday afternoon for that job interview on Tuesday? Is it aware of the success that will likely come in this venture and therefore is propping itself up for prospective new owners?
I hope that's what it means. I certainly feel differently. I no longer occasionally feel trapped by the patio walls, looking over at the community pool behind one of those walls, thinking that that's the only poetry to be found here, those empty chairs framed around the pool, one of the tables on the other side, near the bathrooms. I feel at peace with the place, no more conflict. I can let it go. I can forget and concentrate on what I've wanted for so long, what will finally happen. Meridith reminded me that one of the Henderson library branches is inside a mall. It's true. And since there are no polling stations in Henderson, voting also happens at the two malls in the area. I've wanted to live in a unique area so badly. And this fits my definition.
I feel no regret at giving up the DVDs I must, giving up the books I must give up in order to move with relatively fewer things. I know there are libraries there, and used bookstores there, and I know that I will find new authors there that I never thought about here. I am ready for my room to belong to someone else. I spent more time outside it than inside it anyway. It was painted particular shades of blue, the walls painted sky blue, the door painted a dark blue, but that's all I had that was me. I have framed prints by Chris Consani of Elvis Presley, Marilyn Monroe, Humphrey Bogart, and James Dean together at a coffee bar and in a movie theater. I never got to hang those up. No room. I'll finally have that chance and my new room will finally be mine, will bear all the hallmarks of my personality. I can seek out bookshelves and finally place my books on those; no more boxes as bookshelves. I can feel settled, content, ready to explore every facet of my new home, inside and outside.
I think this apartment feels the same way. We'll have a gracious parting, and then new people can move in, who I hope will love it more than I ever did. It deserves that after these seven years. Maybe it'll have someone or a few people who love Saugus as much as I love Las Vegas. These walls should have that.