This week marks the one year anniversary of living in my cozy, downtown condo overlooking Main Street and across the freeway, the beautiful, Pacific ocean. As I sit here typing, looking out towards the view, my eye stops at the balcony. Ah, the balcony. Sometime last summer, while the condo was still in escrow, my realtor and I met here to look over a few things. We surprised the owner who was cleaning the balcony on her hands and knees. How grateful I was and how happy to meet the kind lady who’d agreed to sell her rental unit to me. Well, it’s been a year, and I guess things kind of got away with me and somehow, I’d failed to emulate the former owner. I watched as the tiles on the balcony got dirtier and dirtier, and still somehow I managed to avoid going outside and using soap and water to clean them. And now we’re in a drought.
Fortunately, my upstairs neighbor came indirectly to the rescue. I noticed last week that she’d put out a bunch of plants and pots if anyone wanted them. I did. But I’d run out of soil and needed to drive over to Lowes to pick up a bag of soil which I did on my day off today. While I was there, directly across from the soil, were dwarf Myer lemon trees. For only $23.98. And I had a free pot waiting for me at home! I couldn’t resist. I’d wanted one since the day I’d moved in.
So there I am, late this afternoon as the fog rolled in to keep me cool, transplanting my new lemon tree and several other plants which my neighbor had donated. Well, of course, I spilt some of the soil and made an all over mess of the place WHICH I HAD TO SWEEP UP! The act of sweeping led me to see how dirty the tiles really were underneath all that dust and soil, and well, I didn’t get on my hands and knees, and I did my best to conserve water but I have to say, the patio looks a heck of a lot better!
So here I sit, counting my blessings. When my boyfriend and I moved in last August, the County Fair was in its final two days. I remember well how I was drifting off to sleep after a day of moving in when I heard a loud boom. My boyfriend came running into the bedrooom, opened the blinds, and dragged me over to the sliding glass door to watch the fireworks. It was worth getting out of bed for. The next night we repeated the ritual.
This year we waited in excitement for the first night of the Fair. Sure enough, at 10:00 p.m., BOOM! I jumped out of bed and ran into the livingroom to watch from the bigger window. Obviously I had more energy this year! The fireworks were enchanting, and my boyfriend’s shoulder massage enhanced my joy. The second night, the five minute show seemed to drag on a bit. My boyfriend’s massaging helped but I wondered if I could do this for ten night’s straight. Welll, God must have been listening for on the third night, the fog rolled in JUST as the fireworks began, and all we could see were the edges of the colorful explosions. We had a good laugh at God’s sense of humor.
So I apologize, God. I look forward to the next seven nights of a beautiful show of color over the ocean from my very own (clean) plant filled balcony. I think of my mother who loved both plants and the ocean, and who dragged herself out of the house every Fourth of July to take her seven children to watch fireworks. What she would have given to have watched the show from her very own balcony!