Usually I’m the one taking our kid on a road trip and usually during the summer, but this week my husband took our kid on a road trip for 2 days to visit family up north and I was suddenly:
a l o n e…
I hit the gym, Trader Joe’s, de-Maddona-Inn-ed our home (see pic), ordered Alexa to play Joni Mitchell as I mopped floors, mopped residue of 3 visiting doggies, aired out guest room, washed towels and rugs and ordered in from The Stand (ahi tuna sandwich wrapped in lettuce instead of bun/extra cilantro aioli sauce–they’ll do that, replace the bun w/lettuce, just ask), reclined on the porch couch-swing in eyes-annihilating sunlight and chatted on cell phone w/older sister and my in-laws who had just departed that day (that’s how much I love them), turned on all lights, inside and out, stayed up late watching the new Blade Runner, woke up at 3 a.m. on the couch, staggered to bed, onto which I invited both dogs, the 2 kittens and my cat, woke up the next morning staring at ceiling thinking: I will find a housesitter.
Mostly I was good at solo living. Both of the L.A. apartments I rented (1 for 4 years, 1 for, thankfully, less) were within walking distance of hiking and I did, I walked and hiked.
I threw potato soup and wine parties (who doesn’t, when you’re single!). I hosted book clubs and poetry nights. My apartments rocked, the best one in Los Feliz (I could walk to Birds and the Bat Cave), although the Echo Park apartment, the last before throwing in my lot (including my potato soup pots) with my husband, had an amazing view of downtown and beyond and I wrote well there, inspired by the expansive view: actual trees, the green skyscrapers of downtown, intriguing haze, Griffith Observatory’s domes, occasionally a glimmer of ocean.
My living alone: all good! Except for the panic bits–when I called my older sister, wailed:
WILL I ALWAYS BE ALOOOOOONE!!!!!!!!
When you live in Los Feliz or Echo Park you constantly hear people or maybe even yourself insisting, I WOULD NEVER LIVE IN THE VALLEY, the VALLEY part spoken as if you’ve just stepped in dog poop.
I have never appreciated my scorched valley and our A/C laden home more than with my 2 lights being away. And though the view here is limited to a bamboo-lined yard, it’s a yard where sword fights and archery matches take place and dogs run wild and a turtle enjoys her outdoor pen and a fat orangesicle cat sprawls on his back in the forever-sun and this weekend, once my 2 lights are back, we are going to play croquet in this yard with the set Santa brought us.
This valley is fruitful, despite the scorch. Who knew.