The previous owners of our new old trailer home went back to Canada ten days ago. Since then I’ve felt my psychic responsibility for both dwellings. I agonize over my decisions for the trailer, line up fence contractors, research air conditioners online with Consumer Reports. I cry watering the bougainvillea here, ache when I hear the house sparrows chittering. I sit in our courtyard garden and savor sight and sound. I have dreams of future lushness in our new home, but for the beginning our life outdoors there will be stark in comparison, no trees, no hedge alive with birds. I’ll miss our big fan palm and our valiant pine tree. I’ll miss color and texture, bark and stone and hibiscus. I so hope the new tenant will take care of the lives we leave behind us here.
I lay in bed this morning while fierce winds had their way with our world and worried the teetering fence with the rotted post at the trailer may end up across the road, prayed if it fell it would fall inward instead. When I saw the fence between my landlord’s yard and ours had given way, my first thoughts were go now, move now, don’t wait. My next thought was how odd that this fence would fall over when I was worried about the one at the trailer. Was this some weird kind of mirroring, some parallel universe thing?
When I walked over to check on the trailer, the fence there was listing but not down. I stacked more bricks against one side, wedged the bird bath against the other. Now it’s late at night, the wind still noisy behind our closed doors, but I don’t feel anxious. And there is another sweetness that came to me today. This afternoon, when I went to lock the trailer door, I turned back, compelled by a wash of feeling. “I’m looking forward to coming to live here,” I said to the empty rooms. I think it was the first time I felt it in my bones. I had a lopsided grin on my face when I turned to leave. There is life outside here, too. I passed the orange nasturtiums beside the propped up fence on my way out. I was still grinning when I headed home.