|Boots to protect my ankles from snakes, jeans to keep mosquitoes off my legs, a bandana to keep the sweat out of my eyes and a beer to wet my whistle. All ridiculous and necessary|
|20 bags of pine needles and leaves just off the side of the house|
Since moving out to the boonies, the first question I get (with big dreamy eyeballs full of hope) when I visit Houston is "How's it living in the country?" I smile, bite my tongue, and say "it's great". I mean, that's a loaded question with at least a 20 minute response. Yes, I love it or did. Yes, it's been an adventure and a completely new experience. Yes, I would do it again. No, not anytime soon. And not a chance on God's green earth that I'd ever move out to the middle of nowhere by myself ever again. There's a reason "It takes two to tango", this shit is difficult.
You know when you get your mind set on an idea and can't really get off it? You just have to do it. That's basically what happened when I decided to move out to the boonies at the start of the year. It's been 90% awesome and 100% 'kick my butt' hard work. Here's how it's truly gone down...
/House built in early 1900s on a fair sized lot. Awesome right?
/Original unsealed floors. Have you seen Texas sized spiders? Do you know how hot it's been?
/No garbage disposal or dishwasher. Not too terrible for one person, but that changes when you have more than one guest over.
/No restaurants or stores near, so I've become brave in the kitchen. I've even baked a few things.
/Four window units for the whole house, half of which don't really work too well. If you've experienced a summer in Texas, you're feeling my pain.
/Two giant trees that provide the worlds greatest soundtrack when the wind blows.
/Best front porch that Zeyk and I love
/No TV, so I've been reading and practicing the uke again.
/Satellite internet was my only option out here, so if there's clouds, wind or rain, I kiss the internet goodbye. Again, I've been reading and playing the ukelele a lot. haha.
/There's a rad attic that's floored and has beautiful light that pours in from three windows. I can't wait to get up there this fall and make something of that space.
/Living alone allows me to decorate however I want. Never had that before.
/Zeyk has all the room the run out here.
/The sky. Any weather. Any time of day. Breathtaking.
/The first few months I was finding piles of dog food in my clothes, jacket pockets, between mattresses, tool box, and drawers. Of course my twisted mind jumped right to the the spirits. Then after a little research, this is common in country homes + (eek) mice. Have yet to hear one or see one, but I had pest control out here asap and have stayed on top of every crumb, drink and piece of Zeyk's food ever since. Haven't found any piles or droppings lately, but the daily battle is getting old.
/I've had to chase more roaches with a can of raid in the middle of the night more times than I care to get into. (bonus. Zeyk only cares to kill bees. The roaches don't phase him)
/On the upside of the two previous details, I'm probably the cleanest human with the cleanest home due to my ongoing war with pests.
/The stars at night are big and bright (deep in the heart of Texas). When I have friends staying the night out here, one of my favorite things to do is walk around and stargaze. It's unreal.
/Wood floors, no next door neighbors and a record player provide the perfect setting for Risky Business style solo dance party.
/I'm finally not scared of the dark.
/I have a collection of videos and photos on my phone and camera of light/shadows in my house. Being surrounded by trees and not having window coverings has offered up one of my favorite things about this space.
A few things I've learned about myself by living in the country
/I enjoy cooking and baking
/I love a clean, dust free home.
/I dream of sleeping in a room of 70 degrees.
/I'm more confident in general after living alone
/I love living alone
/leftovers past day two are no fun
Now back to that 'fair sized' lot I mentioned earlier. Did I also mention that I can't find a lawn service or a teen with a riding lawnmower to come my way? I mean, where's my Patrick Dempsey at? haha. Since I'm only renting a few more months, there's no way I'm buying a riding lawnmower, so that leaves me and a regular push mower. Jacob came out and did it once and my Pops came by this past weekend to help me tackle the yard and few other issues. We spent two full days out there (sun up to sun down) getting after snakes, leaves, hedges, and gardens. We ate cold sandwiches and drank beer. My body is just now starting to recover from pulling out really ugly shrubbery from the from "garden". We didn't finish everything, so Pops (thank God for Pops) is coming back out this weekend.
We never found the five snakes my brother saw while I was in Nashville, but we did find a good sized snake skin after it moulted in my watershed. (Note: When hunting snakes in a watershed, it's best to use a machete over a gun. You'd think this is common sense. wrong.) It's now a decorative piece in my mudroom and my neck is two shades redder.
Every evening, I sit down on my lovely green sofa and look around at my space and my home that I've created. I both love it and hate it. Every Saturday morning that I sit on the porch with Zeyk and my cup of joe, I fall back in love with it. One day, I would like to move back out to the country, but do it right and with a companion. Buy a house and tackle it together. I have learned that this is one dance, I don't want to go at alone.
Thank you to my wonderful family for helping me survive out there :)