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I just wrote this beautiful, witty, incisive, insightful, superlative piece of prose,* which my newly reconstituted laptop is now dining off of. I can hear its contented chewing and swallowing as I type, and I am torn between love and hatred. I love that I have my laptop back, fully functional, from Joe’s “I promise to fix it” computer hospital. I hate that it just ate my writing. Shall we have some photos instead?

Here he is, the man-child who keeps his promises. Took him a month or so, but I think he secretly delighted in removing and reinstalling windows, saving my files on an external hard drive, and making sure I use firefox instead of explorer. I also now have open office instead of word, except the shortcut is labeled “word” as his idea of a joke. I think we’ll keep him around. He can be seen here humoring me by posing for this picture in a delightful and entirely unuseful hallway in the caretaker’s lodge at Pittock Mansion. And now, the mansion itself:

We used the free pass from the library and went on a family field trip. We used to go here as kids – Lu and I would swoon over the old furniture and grand staircase and the old-fashionedness of it all. This time I was all into taking a gazillion pictures of the exterior. And the kitchens. Because I love kitchens.

Please ignore the glass “soap bubbles” that are someone’s idea of whimsical, and just pay attention to that sink! It curves! I want it!

I was attempting to sum up the annual house-blessing, the frantic cleaning (and by cleaning I mean hiding half the contents of my room in my closet and quickly vacuuming), and my thoughts on how priests get these tours of everyone’s houses. My inner voyeur was coming out.

Which is probably why I enjoy housesitting as much as I do. Apart from a barely repressed obsessive-compulsive tendency to want to leave everything EXACTLY as I found it, and the occasional freaky pet, housesitting is a delight. Especially with ample compensation. But I love love what you can learn about people by spending two weeks alone in their house. Not that I’m a snooper, but the first thing I do it open every single cupboard in the kitchen. And sc an their bookshelves. You get the idea.

*which I can say because it’s gone and no one can ever prove me wrong.

January 2006
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