Somewhere In Time

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Surprisingly, I awakened in the early morning hours yesterday morning with the thought that I was rested. Unfortunately, when I looked at the clock I knew my feeling wasn’t commensurate with reality. I had fallen asleep around 10:30 p.m. I know that only because when I moved my iPhone from the desk to the bedside table and set the alarm, I inadvertently telephoned Craig. When he answered the phone, I asked: “Did you call me or did I call you?” I honestly didn’t know. He was not nearly as confused. He assured me that he had not initiated the call.

 

I remember looking at the clock following that call. I don’t recall the specific time to the minute, but it was near 10:30 p.m. I fell asleep a short time later and I subsequently awakened feeling rested and ready for the day. Unfortunately, the illuminated numbers on the clock display read “1:35”. Three hours sleep is significantly short of enough to result in truthfully being rested.

 

Was it the room temperature? That might have been a factor. It was hot. I remember that it felt hot in the room, so I threw off the covers. I might have immediately fallen back to sleep, but after throwing off the covers it soon felt too cool. Consequently, I alternated between throwing the cover off and pulling it up for the next two hours. At one point in the midst of frustration, I turned on the light to look at the dimly illuminated number on the thermostat. It was set on 72 degrees. Obviously, room temperature was not a problem. That is near a perfect reading.

 

So, temperature really wasn’t the issue. Was it the level of light in the room? I had left the blackout drapes and the interior-sheer pleated drapes open in hopes of being awakened by the morning sunlight. Actually, I don’t know from where that thought came. Nothing could be farther from the truth. I am always up before the sun. Besides that, light filtered into what could have been the darkened sky from the streetlights that illuminated the sidewalk outside the hotel and from across the busy street. It wasn’t dark enough to be dark and it wasn’ta light enough to really help. What I’m saying is true. You know what I’m talking about, don’t you?

 

If you won’t tell anyone, I’ll let you in on a secret. “I left the curtains open because I am afraid of the dark”. Seriously, at my age, I seldom sleep in a pitch-black room if I can help it. I really am afraid of the dark. I am not making this up. It really has become a cause for concern. My fear isn’t a holdover from early childhood with a monster lurking around the corner. No, my fears are more real than that.

 

My fears are the things that go bump in the dark. My visual acuity for avoiding a misplaced piece of furniture or something seemingly out of place is beyond belief. I live a portion of my life in unfamiliar hotel rooms and a misplaced suitcase can be the catalyst that lands me on my face. Trust me on this one. I know what a darkened room in an unfamiliar setting can do. It doesn’t always work in the occupant’s best interest.

 

It is awkward when you walk into a wall just because you didn’t remember that it was there. How about turning to walk through and open door only to fine that it is actually two feet from where you turned. Ouch! Ouch! Ouch! That can hurt.

 

Okay, so it was 1: 35 a.m. and it seemed like I was awake for the long hall. What did I think about? Maybe it was the power of suggestion, but thoughts of the Magic Time Machine in my morning blog reminded me of the first house we purchased when we moved to Austin. Initially we rented a two-bedroom duplex for six months in South Austin while we took the time to find permanent housing. Both Treva and I had jobs with the State and we both worked near the intersection of Riverside and S. Congress. My office was on Congress Avenue and her’s was on Riverside.

 

As far as amenities go, my office was better. For one thing, my office had a wall of windows. The office was on the third or fourth floor. On the first floor of the building or maybe it really was the basement, there was a gym available for use by anyone who had an office in the building. Across from the gym there was a bar/sandwich shop that was readily available for a quick lunch or snack after work. I always ate mine, but there were a host of folks who drank there’s. Even though the gym and “Dew Drop In” (I made up that name) was in the basement, there was an outside entrance that opened into a covered parking lot.

 

When we started looking for a home to purchase, we looked from extreme South Austin to Round Rock. South Austin won out since Craig was in daycare/kindergarten on Manchaca Road near William Canon. Why not maintain the routine for him and stay close enough that he didn’t have to change daycare?

 

The first home that we purchased was out-of-the-box nice for us. Of course, if you’re moving from a small two-bedroom duplex anything could feel nice. The home was in the Castlewood sub-division that featured large lots, manicured lawns and nice homes. The neighborhood was also secluded from other neighborhoods and surrounded by undeveloped land on two sides. In fact, the home we purchased backed up to a large track of land that would reportedly never be built on because it was family owned and they weren’t selling.

 

We bought the house from a lady who was probably my parent’s age. She lived alone and her tastes were pretty stuffy. I say that now, but at the time we thought we had arrived. The windows were all covered with custom draperies. The back of the house included the dining room, kitchen and a breakfast area. Those three rooms included large windows that looked out onto a very manicured lawn at the back of the house. I guess you could say that the owner had definitely put her stamp on the home. She was selling the house to move back to Kansas to be near her family.

 

The kitchen and dining room were decorated with a cheerful yellow-and-white wallpaper pattern. It was so seventies, but then again it was the latest thing. We were living the American dream. The house featured a side-entry double garage. One of the things we found stored in the attic above the garage was several hatboxes filled with ladies hats. Apparently, the previous owner had forgotten to move them or purposefully left them behind.

 

The living area was about six inches lower than the rest of the house. There was a rounded brick fireplace in one of the corners. For the record, I’d never buy a home today with an anything other than level flooring. The six-inch drop could have been a trip hazard, but we never tripped. We were young people living in a home that seemed out-of-sync for our ages. I even bought a full-size Oldsmobile to park in the garage. I traded in the 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass that I wish we still owned for four- door full-size Oldsmobile. It had “middle aged and married” written all over it.

 

I guess you could say we were old before our time. As it turned out, we only lived in the house for about a year and a half and sold it to buy a new home about three blocks way so we could start from scratch and put our stamp on it. It was a two- story home and it was our first time to landscape from scratch. It turned out really good.

 

Okay, so now you know what I was thinking about in the very morning hours of yesterday.

 

All My Best!

Don

 

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