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patterns of ink

How fruitless to be ever thinking yet never embrace a thought... to have the power to believe and believe it's all for naught. I, too, have reckoned time and truth (content to wonder if not think) in metaphors and meaning and endless patterns of ink. Perhaps a few may find their way to the world where others live, sharing not just thoughts I've gathered but those I wish to give. Tom Kapanka

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Almost Home Again...

There were times between 2004 and 2010 that writing at Patterns of Ink was my personal outlet, and in some ways it was a connection to family during the years my mother tried to find some sunshine through the cloudy skies of cancer. I had a sense of urgency to write about our camping trips and other things that Mom enjoyed to read, and she helped me with that Duncan Phyfe story that capsulated my parents’ first year of marriage. Then after Mom died in 2008, I had a sense of urgency about writing Unsettled as my siblings and I were unsettled about what to do with the family homestead. It was all very cathartic, and some readers followed along.

I look forward to the time I can write more regularly here again. It has been a busy year with plenty of urgent deadlines and tasks but not such a good year for personal blogging thus far.

Today I opened Patterns of Ink and saw that I have not posted since March 17, when I told you about our water damage. Spring Break for our school has come and gone, but it was a task-driven week for me, and I am exhausted. It was this week that all of the insurance work (as well as the projects triggered by those improvements) came to a head. The ruined part of the ceiling was torn out and replaced--looks as good as when it wsa built in 1969. Wall damage fixed. New bathroom fan. Kitchen light repostioned..Stained carpet is replaced, and lots of other carpet put in, too.

Literally every room in the house, has been emptied or stacked full of furniture for two weeks. Yesterday, room by room, as the carpet layers completed sections, we put our lives back together.

Today our carpet installer, Brent, came back to finish the final touches on the basement stairs. After three days in our house, he seems like an old friend. Today being Saturday, he brought his four-year-old son, Bryce, as his helper. He’s a great kid who wants to do everything just like his Daddy does. His father’s forehead was dripping with sweat so Brent pulled a bandana from his back pocket, rolled it, and tied it above his brow as a sweat band. His son asked, “If I get sweaty, too, can I wear one of those.” There is nothing like watching a four-year-old help his father work.

After Brent and Brice left, I crossed the living room carpet in stocking feet. It felt like a stepping into a brand new pair of slippers. In my recliner where I usuallly write, I began this post, looking up occasionally at the empty wall at the end of the room.

Here is the craftsman who removed the ruined finish, prepared the legs, polished the pedals, reconstructed the inside workings, and will apply the final darker finish. The restored piano will be the last piece of the water-damage puzzle, but it is still in that quaint refinishing shop in Spring Lake, stripped down to the faded rose-tones of bare mahogany. We look forward to its arrival at the end of the month, but until then... it almost feels like home again.

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