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2016-01-23 - 9:03 p.m.

I am so delighted to have time home alone to clean my house! My housemate who lives in the basement DID enjoy bonding with the neighbors as she went out to shovel. I went out last night before I went to sleep, and again this morning around 10AM. I spent the rest of the day writing a bit and house cleaning.

It felt SO GOOD to get all the lingering Christmas decorations gathered and all of them up in storage in the attic. There was the big PILE of stuff to go up there in my upstairs hall for the past two weeks since I took down the Christmas Tree, which I always leave up at least until after the Feast of the Epiphany.

My bedroom has been a mess with this BIG pile of crap that I had at one point gathered and stuffed into a cooler and just thrown in a closet and then the attic to get the mess out of site and out of mind where it remained until I needed the cooler this summer. YES that pile has been on my bedroom floor since I took my kids camping over the summer! I KEPT meaning to tackle the mess, but just never found the time! It is not YET done , but its well on the way of being accomplished. Much of it are old PHOTOS, and NEGATIVES, and stationary and things like that which I somehow never had a storage place for.

Today I was happy to find a box that the photos fit in at least and am going through the rest of that mess. It included a calendar from 2015 from the Washington Post (evidence the initial pile has grown since being dumped from the cooler as anything in recent years in it was added when it FELL from the dresser, or migrated from having been pushed under the bed where I pulled things out when "cleaning" but merely added them to the growing pile and SOMEHOW never found time to FINISH the task of completion of cleaning it up!). The pile has things like receipts, notes, schoolwork of kids, my own scrawled study notes, phone numbers, business cards, books, socks, other laundry that fell off the end of the bed to join the pile, garden gloves, magazines, a bill or two, junk mail, school directory, middle school literary magazine (two copies!), a homemade WAND, various other small kid toys I have NO IDEA why are still here, and other general crap I clearly have not missed for the well over a year much of it was stashed or hidden. Heck I think it was MORE than over a year ago that was thrown in the closet... I in fact strangely recall the massive room clean that ended with just ONE LAST PILE...

Goodness. Now it is coming back to me just HOW LONG AGO this core pile was hidden: I so distinctly recall that was when A LOVER was coming over.... WAY BACK WHEN IN 2011... and I only know that was in 2011 because in the cleaning tonight I found a journal from then. Its a paper journal which of course I READ (that is why cleaning a room is such a monumental task as one must READ and look at all the found hidden things). The journal interestingly makes no mention whatsoever of that significant relationship, but of other things happening concurrent to it. It only tells of the other happenings, and other relationships and friends in my world of that time and I KNOW of the unwritten. It is fascinating to me now to see that I never wrote of that person whatsoever in my paper journals.


Just a good memory here. That relationship ended as it was best for us at the time, for a variety of reasons.

The thing is, I had NO intention of writing about that particular man just now. In the writing and it dawning on me just HOW LONG AGO I stashed this LAST PILE I am muddling through with a sense of accomplishment, I started to think of the man.

Main point really was that I hid a mess, first in my closet in 2011 for crying out loud, then in my attic where it sat ... damn I even can recall the MONTH ... oh crap, I just did the math and it was OCT 2010!!! I know as my oldest daughter was sixteen about to turn seventeen at the time which I KNOW for a fact. DAMN that is even WORSE... the journal I found was from Spring 2011 when he was still very much in my life, but the VERY SPECIFIC MEMORY Of cleaning my room and stashing "the pile" in the cooler was from that October before her seventeenth birthday. SO CRAZY OK so the point is I hid a mess in 2010 and here it was FIVE YEARS LATER when that mess landed BACK On the floor in the center of my room and has since remained there, moved around, a few items picked up, a few tossed but more or less the same except for it GROWING LARGER for the NEXT FOUR MONTHS. (I took the girls camping in the Fall and that is when the cooler made it down from the attic. The irony is that it didn't even FIT in the car, so we didn't USE That cooler but at least it was the catalyst to dump its contents in hope of finally cleaning the last of the hidden mess! y house was literally SPOTLESS on that occasion years ago BUT For the last remaining PILE!)

Now while I would never win the Martha Stewart award for organized housekeeper of the year, I don't exactly think of myself as the WORST housekeeper ever either. I mean, I DO clean the bathrooms once a week (almost...) I DO regularly do dishes, don't leave them even in the sink, and mop my kitchen floor at least once a week, often more frequently. I do sweep about every other day, and run the vacuum every couple of weeks. (When girls are here it has to be done more often so we don't become the mouse resort! I tell them that they CAN NOT eat in the living room as there happens to be about a one inch gap at the bottom of my front door which I stuff a rug and of those door things to keep gaps covered and heat in and cold and MICE out, but they seem to forget the house rule often). I HAVE to be diligent in cleaning as I didn't yet successfully figure out how to pick and install a new front door! ( I actually read on line about that, and WENT to two hardware stores thinking I would just go buy a new front door- like it would be a SIMPLE do it yourself task, but found it SO overwhelming looking at that options and getting confused if my measurements even made SENSE that I just gave up on that fix it project for this year thinking it has been an unseasonably WARM winter, so perhaps I will just put that project on hold another year!)

No I didn't come here to write about how I COULD Win the ERMA BOMBECK award for most well hidden mess. Five years in an attic may not even be near a record for a hidden mess not having been cleaned up , but it just MIGHT be in the running as a finalist for such award.

I REALLY came here to write about how in my cleaning I found something tonight I had totally FORGOTTON about on the shelf in my closet which I am APPALLED I KEEP FORGETTING ABOUT FOR MONTHS AT A TIME!

I WISH I thought of this when my oldest daughter was visiting!

You see, a couple of years ago, two to be exact as it was when I did not have a car and RECENTLY had not had a car and had not yet learned that when one has a car and asks a guy friend for a ride, he just MAY think there is some expectation of something other than companionship in RETURN. In this case I thought it was just a trip he would SO ENJOY that I thought he might BE HAPPY To have the opportunity for me to show him this amazing place.

I mean who was I to be so naïve...

I asked a friend who is a VIOLINIST for ($&@I's sake if he might be interested in accompanying me to visit a Luthier where there happens to be a lady who RE-HAIRS BOWS.

I had gone on Ebay in search of a good bow. I found a lot of GERMAN MADE bows and after looking at many decided on the lot figuring based on their description and price there HAD To be SOME WARPING but there MIGHT BE A DECENT one in the lot. It was CHEAP but they had been in fact very good quality once. I enjoyed the research and finding out what the markings mean, so understand that one particular bow of the lot intrigued me because if the marks which looked consistent with my research were accurate it in fact , if in decent shape, if re-haired might not only be a good bow that might offer a decent sound but might be an INTERESTING bow for my violinist daughter to play on her old German Violin. I felt like her beautiful, quirky old antique violin needs an old antique and preferably also made in Germany bow to go along with it.

I was not disappointed in ONE bow of the lot after having the expert look at them all. She confirmed that the others were basically worthless, but she thought that one MIGHT be able to be straightened and re-haired and work nicely. Now understanding that it is as ludicrous to think anyone ELSE other than the musician should ever pick there instrument to think anyone other than the musician should EVER presume to think they could pick a bow for a person, somehow I also understand that sometimes these things work out OK. Knowing my daughter has a most crappy student bow, the same one she has had for over ten years at least and that since she was very small EVERY Teacher of hers has had her BORROW a bow worthy of being placed on her violin in her hand rather than the embarrassment she owns, I KNEW that EVEN IF the bow was not quite right it HAD To be an improvement.

So I hired the lady to re-hair that bow, intending for it to be my daughter's Christmas gift.


The Violinist who I asked to drive me there, who I thought would so ENJOY being in that amazing luthier shop which is this magical place in the mountains, just ruined the experience for me. I mean one has to drive up this huge mountain itself to get there, and on the way passes ACRES of BAMBOO Growing next to a pond and it is just magical and wonderful and a weird, quirky place of creativity in the middle of the woods. The violinist stopped the car as we were driving out of there, near the bamboo, and leaned over in his car and tried to KISS ME.

I was just stunned,
and so taken aback, not turned on at all, and not interested
and frankly found him in the particular a bit creepy

VERY creepy is more like it.

So much so that I left the bow there, with the commissioning of the lady to re-hair it
and never made it back to pick it up.

I didn't have a car
and I didn't easily have a ride up to the mountain and the amazing spot in the middle of nowhere that is truly kinda hard to find

I just never went back to pick up the bow.

I have a vague memory of sitting at my desk and writing a check to pay the lady for the work of re-hairing the bow. It was months later. I had gotten a number of calls that the bow was ready and guiltily wrote the check to pay her for her work.

The nice lady was hesitant to take the job to begin with as she was not sure how it would come out. I recall her hesitancy and my convincing her to do the job as it really was SO IMPORTANT TO ME, and frankly I could only AFFORD to have a bow re-haired and not buy one at that time.

The magic of finding a bow and re-hairing it for my daughter SHOULD have been motivating enough for me to NOT FORGET to go pick it up!

That bow did have these cool marks which when researched were very specific to a particular bow maker so were either an original or a very careful forgery of a very well renowned bow maker in Germany , and now I have NO IDEA Of what time frame that was.. but I think I was targeting the time her violin was made. Some used initials but this one used these particular x x x markings, which indicated a particular shop at the time.

Yet somehow, I did forget to go back and get the bow.

Tonight I noticed the box tucked up in the corner of my closet which holds the other warped old bows that are essentially worthless.

CE la vie..

I have done well OVERALL on E- BAY. The find of the violin alone makes the failure to find a decent bow there when I was poor and had little money to spend on one easy to not be disappointed about.

Someday however, I need to take a trip and ride up that mountain again. First I have to look through my check ledgers and CONFIRM I paid for the work, and find the check and be sure I know for sure she got paid. Heck if she sold the bow now I would EXPECT THAT. But what if it is STILL THERE, tucked up in a rafter, still waiting to be picked up?

NOw onto the finishing of cleaning up THE PILE.


Where have you stashed YOUR PILE?

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