It's the Sunday between Christmas and the start of 2009, and I'm sitting on the floor of my living room not listening to the TV that stays on when it's just me and Heidi. There are boxes and books, dog treats and the rest of our Christmas unwrapped all over the floor, the leftovers of a happy massacre of wrapping paper. Time to do a little turnover in the House of Cole to make room for the new things waiting patiently on the floor for their assigned places. With only a week and a half left to live in this house, I'm a little hesitant to scout these places out, as doing so means things are happening, and that means we're moving out, which leads to leaving, and I'm stuck between excited and a little sad when it comes to that.
I will not miss the way I am sometimes overlooked because I lack the pushiness learned here in infancy, and I will not miss the utter and complete disregard for life that seems to possess so many once they snap their seat belt into place. I will not miss the four hours it takes to mow the entire field we call a lawn, and I will not miss the faulty sealing in the bathroom that makes the toilet seat like ice in the winter. But I have to say, that I will definitely miss the familiar smile with which I am greeted when I stop into Caffe Enrico to get a cappuccino, and the long conversations I have with myself with headphones on while I walk every inch of the yard. And I will also somehow miss switching on the little heater in the bathroom before I'm awake enough to remember every morning so Chris won't freeze in the process of getting ready for work. I will not, however, miss any part of the driving.
Moving is never easy and I know that; it's exciting and nerve-racking and full of questions and appointments and waiting. I suppose the worst part is the parting of friends, so much like the parting of family when we first hopped the pond and landed on the Continent five years ago. Can't Florida be nothing more than a quick and cheap budget airline flight a few hours south like Pisa will be in a month to us? I miss birthdays and holidays spent together, laughing and grumbling alike, and the relief of quiet when everyone has gone home. I miss them growing, my nieces and nephews, into larger shoes and more mature bedroom decor, and more mature faces. I miss their parents and mine, being there to help sort out the things life comes up with to screw with our plans, seeing them grow, as well, as lessons don't stop just because you've grown up. Soon I will add more things to the list missed, more faces to kiss goodbye, and I wonder if I can handle this seminomadic life I've chosen.
I suppose time will tell, but until I have to make those appointments and ready the house, our lives for transplant, I'm content to sit here on the living room floor and look at the boxes and books, dog treats and the rest of our Christmas unwrapped all over the floor, the leftovers of a happy massacre of wrapping paper, and enjoy this house and the memories it keeps. I'm content to watch Heidi sleep and listen to the noise without hearing the words, and just be for a little bit longer in the time between.