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clouds are insane

September 21, 2008

Today is the first day of the rest of your life.  Chloe and I spent the morning, calling around trying to find beanbag chairs of which the greater metropolitan area has none.  Although, Chloe did have a mildly hilarious conversation with the people at Target during which she was put on hold many many times and was forced to repeat the words “beanbag chair” about 25 times in a row.  She was not amused. 

After getting into a small argument in which I admitted that I didn’t even like bean bag chairs, we decided that we needed to jog it out.  We exited our apartment after Chloe tucked her debit card into her sports bra because she explained we might need to get coffee sometime during the run.  I just nodded.  This must be something that people in California enjoy, running while drinking coffee.  We made it a block and a half when we had to step into our neighborhood antique store after being mesmerized by a red velvet chaise lounge.  We dismissed the chaise as being too unwieldy to bring home and then fell in love with a wonderfully gaudy couch whose imitation leather clearly came straight out of the 70s.  It would, we realized, fit perfectly into the slave room and also solved the problem of the beanbags.  We were soon saying the words retro and cocktail hour over and over as we forked over $300.00.  Actually, Chloe forked over the cash with my word that I would pay her back as soon as possible. 

We managed to haul the beast up to our apartment with a dolly borrowed from the store.  After pushing it up the stairs and returning the dolly we went back home to admire our find.  We were in love.  There was only one thing marring our vision of the perfect living room.  The blue tie-dyed curtains left by the previous tenants.  They hung like greasy hair over the window.  Suddenly, Chloe got a bright gleam in her eye as she suggested that we switch these hideous curtains with the nice white ones in the hallway of our building.  I had actually been thinking the exact same thing.  She may have been joking, but I jumped on the opportunity to get rid of the curtains, which were frankly depressing.  After removing them from their rod we scampered down our stairs and after making sure the coast was clear snuck into the hall to make the switch.  We were just finishing replacing the rod in the hallway when our apartment door slammed shut.  It has an automatic lock.  We didn’t have our keys, in fact we had nothing but our stolen curtain and our matching jogging outfits.  At first we laughed, and then we didn’t.  The situation did not look good.  Jacqueline, the third roommate, was in Palm Desert for the weekend and we needed to get a hold of our landlord, except without his number or a phone with which to call it things looked grim.  After trying unsuccessfully to get in via the balcony door (also locked) or the bathroom window (covered by a grate) we decided to walk the mile to Chloe’s aunt’s house to borrow a phone. 

We decided to jog since we could at least get our exercise in.  As we ran past the antique store the owner who was sitting on the sidewalk remarked, “A couch and a run?  Busy day.” To which Chloe yelled, without breaking stride, “We’re locked out.”  Like that was some sort of explanation as to why we were running.  We were locked out so we were running as fast as we could away from the apartment. 

Eventually we found a locksmith who deigned to open our door for a mere hundred and four dollars.  It took him five minutes.  At first he tried to use some fancy lock picking tools, but finally took out what looked suspiciously like a credit card and slipped it between the door and the jam and pop goes the lock.  When he left we wondered if we were supposed to give him a tip.  Nah.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Sharon permalink
    September 21, 2008 9:34 pm


  2. Middle aged woman lamenting her youth permalink
    September 21, 2008 10:38 pm

    As I read your blog and ponder where the kids are and will I get to the sale at Safeway, I remember the same excitement/angst and know that it someone can make it (and write so well about how it feels) it is you, Ramona. I, like your mom, feel the mix of jealousy and “thank God I’m not there anymore”. But truly, it is the best time…not constrained by school or family, you can fly. Can’t wait for the next chapter.

    P.S. The 5′ X 5′ can sleep a family of 4 and a dog when we come to visit, right?

  3. Kent McMIllan permalink
    September 22, 2008 4:23 am

    This probably is not the sort of thing that is entirely appropriate to observe semi-anonymously through cyberspace, but having known the members of the previous generation of Emersons in Austin, and particularly the Emerson most familiar to you, I cannot help but hear a familiar voice in what you’ve written.

    It isn’t hers, exactly, nor is it your grandmothers, whom I also knew; but it is in a tradition that you just can’t buy at flea markets.

    I enjoyed reading your blog. Emerson 3.0, I’d respectfully call it.

  4. your mom's friend, tara permalink
    September 22, 2008 5:11 am

    your mom was the most amazing housemate!Such adventures! and ours was the generation of tye-dyed curtains!try to enjoy the journey …and I’ve so often found that most all the annoyances and unplanned stuff leads to even more amazing discoveries/adventures! i loved your stories. and i can shut my eyes and remember you laying on the cabin porch in Texas,as a wee babe. A carolina wren who had just flown haltingly, for the first time, from her nest, perched on your head, in amazement of that big wide world out there, resting a bit before she flew off to discover it!!! enjoy the flight!

  5. your mom's friend, tara permalink
    September 22, 2008 5:20 am

    I loved being your moms roommate…such adventures!we may have even had tie-dyed curtains!I remember you laying as a wee babe on our cabin porch. A very young Carolina Wren , on its first halting flight out of the nest, landed on your head for a bit, as she took in the whole huge world for the first time!Then she up and flew away. Enjoy the flying, and all the adventures you will have, planned and unplanned!

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