Thursday, April 1, 2010

What's different about this picture - day 2

Life in Florida, at my mom's, is radically different then my usual day-to-day. In some ways. Iz just walked in asking for something and I'm grateful I wasn't still sleeping. Within 2 minutes of seeing me, she already was complaining and I couldn't listening. Can't listen. Being on vacation should mean something different for me too. Something relaxing, easier, stress should be reduced not increased. One thing that's the same as home is that they can't just go outside and play. There are no backyards here. Nowhere to go and play catch (not that they'd ever do that), unless they head into the street. They can't got swimming by themselves. There's nowhere to go and explore. So, any outings to the outside, have to be arranged, organized, overseen by me.

But, back to differences. It's unbelievably quiet here. Home is in the west village, on the corner of 6th Avenue–it's rare not to hear traffic roaring by, sirens and street cleaners and jackhammers punctuating the usual din. Everything here is one story and looks remarkably the same. This development has 3 styles of Spanish style houses people could choose from and a very limited color palate to work with. As you drive into the cul-de-sac, palm trees swaying, magenta hibiscus blooming, it almost feels like you're entering a movie set.

The house is spacious, with soaring ceilings and skylights everywhere. My mom's bathroom is bigger than rooms in my apartment. Every inch has been decorated, from the borders around the perimeter of the guest room, to the towels in the hallway bath.

They have not one but two fridges plus an extra freezer. A garage filled with enough paper goods and saran wrap to last for years. 2 cars in such pristine condition neither look like they've ever been driven. In fact everything here is immaculate. Let's just say my apartment's not like that.

You have to drive everywhere. Whenever we leave the city I crave walking. None of us are fans of car culture and I feel my body atrophying after a day or two. I miss movement, stretching, my heart beating faster at mobility, not at finding a good parking spot. It's a really hard adjustment to not just run downstairs for coffee, feathers (art project recently), ice cream, distraction. Getting somewhere else is a process. Who's going. Who's staying home. Where are we going. When are we leaving. What do we need. Who's driving. By last night our planned trip to Target for pool toys never actualized.

It's hard to be alone here. Even though it's a big house, it's mostly open. No crannies to crawl into to hide.

No autonomy. I can't just run out to be alone for awhile. I think that's going to be the hardest thing for me here. Even though there are other adults, I'm solely responsible for the kids. No one offering to help with meals, entertainment, alternatives. I'm used to getting breaks, even for 15 minutes here and there. Being away enough so that no one can ask me, berate me, need me. I'm not sure how well I'll handle this expanse of time without Jon here to tag team with.

I've got 12 hours ahead of me to fill. 3 meals to make. Pool toys to search out. People to negotiate. Rooms to clean. Dishes to do. Pools to visit. Suntan lotion to apply. Unpacking to sort through.

I'm not having a bright side. Yet. Maybe decaf cappuchino will help.

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