As I said yesterday, I plotted an escape to the Cottage. I was going to take the commuter rail all the way to Kingston and then ask for a ride. It’s a matter of a few miles. However, the work that the MBTA is doing on the Kingston/Plymouth line is causing weekend closures. I was thwarted by this a few weeks ago, but now I find that it will continue until December. Rats! So now my next option was to take the Red Line to Braintree, but that means asking someone to drive 20 miles. So I sent out a bunch of texts and the first response was my son Tom. So that was good, Tom and I got to hang. He’s going to comeback in the next day or two to mow – a task way beyond me.
Jen came up after Tom left to take me to the local Stop & Shop for some groceries. As we sat on the porch afterwards, we realized everything was covered in a thick, yellow/green layer of pollen. Once I was alone and unpacked, I scrubbed the tub…a bug-a-boo with me. Then it was off to the porch. I pulled all the furniture to one side of the porch and hosed down all the gunk. I wiped down all the furniture and repeated the process, remembering to include the screen frames – one point for my memory.
Well that was it for the night. I slowly made a very sparse dinner and flopped on the couch. When I had the energy to wash my dishes and brush my teeth, I figured that was my best chance to head for bed. When it’s my choice, I pick “Big Mike’s” room. The bedstead belonged to my mother’s, father’s father – my great-grandfather Mike. Grace always picks “Mama Kelley’s” room, Mama always slept in that room since the cottage renovation in the early 80’s. But I do steal the “Mama Kelley” sheets to put on “Big Mike’s” bed, lol. Before the renovation, when we were on one side with just two bedrooms, Mama slept on the back porch with one of us. There were two twin beds tucked in an alcove. There is still one bed out there, but the alcove is gone. I can’t imagine the last time someone slept in it. Now that the renovation doubled the number of bedrooms, the back porch is under used and somewhat unappealing. The spirit of renovation never quite made it that far. Not that I fault them, this was a big undertaking for my uncles, my Dad and my male cousins – yes, there were no girls allowed. Although, I lived around the corner and sometimes brought lunch or snacks just to peek at the work.
When my grandparents bought the cottage in 1953 it was divided with each side having 2 bedrooms, an open kitchen/living room, bathroom and front and back porches. My grandfather’s sister Kay and her family were on the other side. Around ‘79/’80 we bought Kay’s half and made it one larger place. But the back porch feels like storage for the grill and lawnmower, it isn’t a place you hang, like the front porch.
But this summer I am sleeping out there. The idea came to me when Grace and I were talking about our parent’s time here in the second half of July. Right now I am here on my Uncle Frank’s time. His family mainly uses it on weekends. Their favorite thing is a cottage they rent in Hampton for several weeks in August. Knowing the Cottage was empty this weekend, I called and asked if I could use it. That was no problem. Starting the first two weeks in July, my uncle Jim and his family will be here. Then it’s my parents. If Grace and her kids come during my parent’s time, and I hope they do….I won’t get “Big Mike’s” room. So Grace and I started talking about the back porch.
It would be much more work than just hosing out the front porch and wiping down the furniture. So after last night – and how slowly I am moving today – I know one thing……
I’ll need to recruit some help!