A Day in the Life
In the midst of all my anxieties, I finally got an acceptable
offer for my house! This is the day I have been waiting for.
This is the day I have been dreading. It is the concrete forward
move, something that says we are really doing this thing and
now, we can’t go back. It took me about 3 hours to actually say
“yes” and once I did, I felt an exhilaration that I hadn’t
expected. I was suddenly aware that Florida was within my reach.
I had been looking at pictures of homes emailed to me by a
Florida realtor every day for months. I had already made one
trip down to Cape Coral to see houses in person. It still didn’t
seem real… Now it looked as though everything I was doing had
Purpose? I have been living in the house my family bought in
1949, the house in which I was raised, of which I took legal
ownership in 1994 and had installed my first little preformed
pond in 1992. It’s the same yard where I had my wild Sweet 16
birthday party, the one that alienated me from all my regular
friends… I hadn’t invited them. I had only invited the FUN
people, the class clowns. I wanted to have a really good time,
to laugh, to be free, and I have to say it was everything I
wanted from a party. One of the boys was aiming the garden hose
through the door at us in the house… what a scream! I don’t
think I’ve ever had as much fun again. The place was drenched,
wrecked; my parents had gone out for the afternoon, and I don’t
remember the outcome when they got back.
The garage has pencil inscriptions on the wood inside, the
names of each childhood friend and the name of the horse we were
pretending to be that day. I grew up in the Roy Rogers, White
Mane and the Lone Ranger era. We kept score on the walls. My son
says he can cut out a piece of the wood to take with me. The
cellar stairway still has chew marks from my first dog, when he
tried to eat his way through the door. Tippy was terrified of
fireworks. They put him downstairs for his own protection.
The rooms upstairs were built for me and my sister to have
our own bedrooms but Nana moved in before it ever came to
fruition. So we shared a room upstairs for the next ten or
twelve years. These days, both rooms are occupied by unrelated
tenants, or I could hardly afford to continue living here. It’s
as though my life is flashing before my eyes.
Out back is the big pond that I labored over day and night
and cried about when I could not get the skimmer to work. In the
pond you will find the first koi I ever bought, swimming happily
with her friends, after 14 years. I gave her injections for
Aeromonas every other day and she survived. Is she going to be
sold with the house or come to Florida with me? There’s the huge
golden-yellow butterfly and the male Aka Bekko with flowing fins
and tails that have also been my friends for nearly as long. And
what about the ghost koi with the extra long fins, a spectacular
fish such as nobody has ever seen before? Will he like Florida?
Or will they all continue to endure New York winters? I can’t
even think about it now.
Look across the street, behind me or next door at the
neighbors who have known me for so many years. I know they won’t
keep in touch. They will be too busy to write. Life is like
But what is this?? The very next day I received a call from
my realtor who dropped the bomb… the deal had already fallen
through. How? Why?? The people just found another house, that’s
all. My house is not sold after all. My fish are still mine. My
neighbors and I are still neighbors… until the next time.
I might be a little histrionic right now but the suspense is
by Carolyn Weise
Ecological Laboratories, Inc.
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