The Old Friend

To the new homeowners,

Congratulations on your new home! Having never sold a house before, I was surprised and a bit disappointed to discover that we’d never get the chance to meet each other or speak at all! It feels like such a big interaction to have without meeting someone, such a big possession to share without speaking. It made me sad, leaving my old home without being able to hand it down with care, without making sure that she will be alright, that she will be loved. So I thought I’d leave you this note.

Here are a few things that might be useful to know.

  • She gets a bit creaky in the winter (who doesn’t) and shifts. If you can’t unlock the front door, pull the doorknob to the left as you’re turning the key. Works every time.
  • Harry and Stacy live next door, if ever you need anything, or go out of town, they are always happy to help. Their cat’s name is Chaucer and he likes to sun himself in your yard.
  • Good luck finding parking during the fringe. I would recommend leaving your car parked on the street for the whole ten days, or you might end up a dozen blocks away. You will also become closely acquainted with the street performers banter. (I like to plan for a vacation during the festival.)
  • The gas fireplace heats up the whole house in the winter (bonuses of a small space) and the fire will comfort you like nothing else!

I must confess that I worry about this old house. Recently, I’ve been lying awake at night thinking about what will become of her. She’s given me so much over the past thirty years, and I would hate to see her go before her time. I know she is tiny compared to those massive infills going up all over the neighbourhood, but I promise you, she’s bigger than she looks, and she is exactly right.

Obviously I’m pretty attached to my home. I found this house when everything was looking bleak. She was my shelter from the storm, and these days, it feels like everyone needs a shelter to weather the goings on in the world. I raised my son here (there’s room to raise a family, I can guarantee it!) I’d live here till I die, but my son is down in Lethbridge and I want to be closer to my grandkids and he thinks I should be in a condo and yadda yadda it doesn’t matter. But I didn’t leave her behind because she was lacking in any way. It was just my time to say goodbye. I wanted to say I never realized how much of a relationship you develop with your home. It’s much harder than I thought it would be to say goodbye and I hope she is loved again as much as I loved her. I really hope she doesn’t become a duplex.

I am aware that you have no obligations to me, or to her, and that you have dreams and plans already in place for your future. I just wanted to stand up for this old friend, because she has protected me for such a long time. Don’t discount this wee home, please! Though she is little, she is fierce!

I wish you health, happiness and comfort in your new home.