Like Tolkien's elves, when my Charles and I went to the ocean, we met our Doom.
What the heck do I mean by that? Well, about two seconds into us being there, that constant ache of homesickness that I've dealt with for quite some time went away. I had managed to shove it into a little corner of myself and forget about it, but the minute I knew it was gone, I realized that I hadn't been free from it since we left the coast three and a half years ago.
My Charles felt it too. At breakfast the next morning, he turned to me and said, "This is the first time I've felt like I belonged since we moved to Nevada County." Uh oh.
It meant that we really, really enjoyed the salty air and humming of fog horns in the night. We didn't miss a day of going to the coast, even three days in when we ate some tainted salad mix from a major store chain and got so ill, I don't even want to think about it.
We followed the windy roads that gave us glorious glimpses of the ocean and wind-blown trees and coastal grasses and everything we've been missing.
We probably won't be moving back any time soon, even if my heart yearns for it. While it may not be home, we have made a life for ourselves here, and we own a house into which we're putting a lot of sweat and love.
Does that mean we'll never go back? Hell no! I'm sure we'll be back someday, and life being as unpredictable as it is, it may be sooner than my Charles and I can even fathom. I told my grandma that this trip spelled the end of any plans to retire to the desert. I told her that I think we had it right before we left Humboldt County -- live at the coast, vacation in the desert. We had a pretty perfect set up that way, after all.
We spent some time hiking among the redwoods, too. How could we not? We're as used to the diffused glow of the redwood canopy as we are of cold, crashing waves.
And it was absolutely beautiful. The temperatures were as close to perfect as it gets. 70 degrees on the North Coast? No kidding. I felt like it had been held in a cup until we could get there. My friends that still live in Hum and Mendo Counties have been rather oppressed by the fog all summer long.
Oh, the smell of the moist redwood bark, the feel of the spongy forest floor, the emerald of e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g.
Before I wax nostalgic to the point of nausea, maybe I should talk about the work we did on the house?
We did a lot. Four of our days were spent working on my office. We prepped the remaining sheet rock, filled little cracks with foam insulation on both the inside and outside, and my Charles rewired the outlet that had been that hot mess I previously discussed. That foam stuff is amazing! I was watching a heat shimmer at the corner of the house as my Charles filled the cracks with foam, and then, voila, the heat shimmer disappeared.
Then we put up the insulation. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. I've worked with insulation in the past and dealt with itchy forearms for days after, but this stuff went up easily and didn't coat me in glass dust.
The new sheet rock went up pretty easily, too. There ended up being a couple of hiccups, the main one being the light switch. I held it out so my Charles could attach it to the stud. He pushed it back. This occurred a couple of times, and I decided to leave it alone. Fast forward an hour or so, and we had to do a patch. That's fine, though, because how else do you learn? We were careful with the patching, so hopefully, it won't show at all.
Then it was on to taping, mud, and sanding. It's waiting for us to mud and sand at least once, if not twice, more. Once that's accomplished, it's texture time!
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