There’s a little piece of conventional wisdom that I hear (and say) a lot: The last 10% of a project usually takes the most time to complete.
Apparently this is true of moving, too.
It’s been a few weeks but we’re getting the new house squared away. I’ve been spending a lot of time this week unpacking my office and trying to get things set up so I can get back to work on “The Red Boy” and a few other projects that are not-so-patiently waiting for me to get my act together.
I know stories. They’ll only wait for so long before moving on to someone else. It’s happened to me before, more times that I care to admit.
It’s taking a lot longer than I expected to get settled. I’m not sure why, but I suspect it’s because things seem so much more final now. We have no intention of ever moving again — which is a relief, but it also raises the stakes a bit when I’m looking at where to put forty boxes of books. Because, y’know, forever.
I’m not sleeping very much, either. I don’t usually get more than four or five hours a night, but I’ve been averaging about three for the past few months. Even with all the stress and chaos of the move behind us, sleep is still eluding me.
No idea why. Maybe it’s because Winter is on the way. I tend to sleep less during the colder months — which we have a lot of, here in Michigan.
Maybe it’s because of this…
The first night in a new house is always strange.
At night, when it’s quiet, I can hear voices from long ago. The people who lived in these same rooms, walked these same floors . . . they speak to me, whispering their secrets, telling me their names.
I can smell their food cooking in the kitchen, hear their feet on the stairs, their shouts and laughter and their arguments, children crying in the corners . . . their songs worm their way into my dreams.
(That’s been running through my mind for the past few weeks. It’s from my play Drawing Away — well, to be accurate, it’s actually from the first play I ever wrote which got reworked a few years back into Drawing Away. The first version had its charms but it’s a better story now, I think. You can download a copy here if you’re interested.)
It takes time for a new place to feel like it’s yours.
A few of rooms in the new house are getting there. But a lot of the others still feel a bit like Limbo.
Right now, I’m working on the office. Because I need to write.
Then it’s the bedroom’s turn. Because I need to sleep.