You should never shut yourself up in a wardrobe….

blog…But moving into a new place without internet is very nearly the same thing, as it turns out. I used my internet connection for virtually nothing other than staying in touch, but on the other hand I used virtually nothing else for staying in touch. I may have to become a hermit, which will be inconvenient but affordable.

The public library, bless it, is the one place I can always get a work-and-social-updates fix without feeling obligated to buy overpriced pastry, but (as I know all too well) it will be closing soon so we can haul its contents back into its fantabulous renovated quarters. It will, as just noted, be fantabulous; but not until mid-September. I’ll have to muddle through till then unless I decide to shell out enough to pay for interwebs … it’s really more a matter of principle I suppose, since I’m just so used to having it for free.

Speaking of the new digs and things I miss (or will miss) from the library, today’s drawing is courtesy of of a bit of nostalgia from our old library building combined with some novelty from my new residence. First off, I’m not used to having a spare room. I’m used to having some spare room, on the floor, between the piles of junk (which were mostly actually books and clean drawing paper and things so NOT REALLY JUNK, OKAY?), but not an entire room that I don’t use for any particular day-to-day task. Since it feels odd to say, I’ve taken to calling it Spare Oom, in the manner of Mr. Tumnus. 

The second part of this involves a small mysterious closet in the old library (spoiler: It was actually the book drop — except when it was a magical portal, of course), that had at one point borne the whimsical but appropriate label, “To Narnia.” Thus, in the manner of workplace argot, the drop closet became the Narnia closet, or simply Narnia, to many of us, even after the hand-printed sign had long since departed. It only seemed fitting to pay a small, rather obscure homage to it with my own Spare Oom … particularly as I keep getting confused by the warren of doors and hallways and will benefit from some signage.

There’s not much else to say at the moment, I suppose, at least none that will interest a stranger. The gecko survived the move, thanks largely to the help of a friend who hosted his ginormous aquarium in her home while the gecko subsisted grumpily in a small plastic storage tub. (He also live briefly and — shh — secretly in the bottom drawer of the hotel room I stayed in between residences, as it was much larger and gave him some room to stretch his little lizard legs.) As various other items of furniture didn’t fare so fabulously in storage, I had at least some measure of peace knowing that his glass palace was unharmed.

I feel like I have to explain to people that I come from the north part of town when I go walking around my new neighborhood. “We don’t have animals there, you see,” I picture myself saying. It’s not true, and it is. We have sparrows, and crows, and somewhat incongruous barn swallows, and once in a while you see a squirrel.There was a resident rabbit that somehow managed to be a juvenile every year; so, clearly not the same rabbit, but always just one, perhaps inheriting the territory. (I know rather little about cottontails, I’ll admit.)

There are trees down here, trees plural, not just the last sad basswood clinging to survival as the carpenter ants work steadily toward its rotting heart, arching over the streets in a canopy of shade, and the squirrels need hardly touch the ground. There are rabbits everywhere. A squirrel lay down — LAY DOWN — in the middle of the sidewalk and blocked my path, staring at me with mild curiosity. Down a bit further, where I lived until the age of nine (across from the meadow — oh, the lovely flooded meadow, but that’s another day’s story), robins stare at me with naked disbelief as I, this two-legged wingless wannabe, tramp behind sleepy houses through their personal worm-farms. They do not fly away until I’ve nearly trampled them.

I’m less enchanted with the dogs, of course. In my pet-free building there are four of them, as far as I can tell from the barking. I passed eight on my way to a cafe on Main Street and back — five barking madly, two off-leash, one well-behaved and under control. I’m not a great fan of dogs on a good day, and while I tolerate them, I’ve been bitten enough as a child to scoff at “she’s friendly, don’t worry!” We shall have to see, I think, about the dogs.


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