subject to change.


‘we live in a thrift store.’

these words from stephanie as she surveys the garage sale decor of our home’s main room. the dining table has been sold and removed over the weekend and we have lined the walls with neat-ish little piles of things we need to get rid of before we depart. a red blanket, that may or may not have been recently taken from an airplane, is laid in the middle where a table once was and is crowded with folded clothes.

i am reminded every morning of our current transitional limbo. i blearily step out of the kitchen with a bowl of cereal and a french press ready to seat myself for my morning reading at our table—-oh yeah. we sold the table. this happens more often than it should.

but it makes sense, in a way. we have lived with a set of things and routines for the last two solid years. our minds are used to those pathways. and now we reach for things that are no longer in our house. we use this or that object gingerly because someone has claimed it and will acquire it soon. we live now with an ever-dwindling amount of things and every day is a small exercise in creativity and problem solving, learning to live without.


most of the large items, furniture and the like, besides the car, have been sold or claimed. little things remain now, as you can see from the picture above. and this is the weirdest part, the piecemeal removal, the slow erosion of the various piles. every day friends come over and walk away with more of our stuff. as they leave we think, wow! they bought a lot! and then we turn around and see the piles have not changed their shapes much at all.

but these are all things, objects, menial possessions. there are bigger things we will leave behind. many who have been through the watson living room thrift store have expressed some sadness that though they have some neat new things, we are leaving. i guess that says something good about the community we have grown into here.

this has been the past week. last wednesday, we bid farewell to our faithful, happy, overly-boisterous, joy of a dog, little mac. logistically, what with the coming abundant changes to life, we could not figure out a way to keep him with us. we found him a new home with other expats. everybody loves him over there, we hear, and he is well-behaved. and he has a huge yard to run around in, which he certainly needs. we’ll miss him, but are glad to know he is in a great place.

and so here we sit now, the night before we hold our little moving sale on the lawn of j.lynn’s where hopefully a swarm of expats seeking bagels and donuts will carry away the last of our superfluous goods. our thrift store is packed away in boxes and suitcases. the debris of moving strewn and cluttered, left to be picked up sometime. cleaning will come later.

we leave this house late next week and will spend our last month and a half in rwanda in a house on the other side of town, used often for transitional phases such as ours. we will go with only the few bags that will fly with us in april.

and in those last weeks we hope for some peace. with the worries of moving dealt with we hope for a time before we leave in which we might both rest and finish the work here well, say our goodbyes and all that. we’ll get there. later. right now i just want to sleep. tomorrow’s going to be a busy day.




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