Friday, February 27, 2015

My Fantasy Life

I've had a fantasy. Yes, I'll admit it. It's nothing juicy. It's not even particularly interesting or weird. Some people create possibility boards and charts. My possibilities are all in my head. They're all up there like tiny bubbles ready to burst for my consideration. For example, I dream up prime parking spots and great ones appear. I surrounded myself with a longing for Paris and voilĂ . All my thoughts don't have to come to fruition to be pleasant and fulfilling. Some do. Some don't.

For some twenty years now, I have been driving past a little house in a town near here. It hasn't been in a weird, creepy, stalker kind of way. No, it's been more admiring, thoughtful, wishful. A few times a year when I was in that particular town, I'd check on "my" house. It once occurred to me to knock on the door and ask the owners to call me if they ever wanted to sell. That moment was fleeting. I wasn't certain that I wanted to retire and be responsible for a house. I noticed that the other homes on the street were newer, larger, and more stately. They were all on the west side beyond a large tree and did not appear to be encroaching on my perfect little place
I used to imagine myself living in this house. It's small. In fact, it's tiny and doesn't even have a garage...just a makeshift wooden carport that looks like an animal stall next to some open space.

I can't tell you what the appeal has been. I just always saw myself wearing a long, loose, flowy, flowered dress, giant apron, straw hat and carrying a trowel. I'm not that sort of person, but that's what I imagined. Further, I saw myself in the same outfit sans apron (not much room for a lot of varied clothing in that little dwelling), sitting on a stool in the yard, painting at an easel. I am not a painter, but in our thoughts, all things are possible aren't they? Wildflowers would adorn the yard and living space in the summer. I'd eat freshly picked berries at an outdoor picnic table while reading a book in the good weather. I'd be holed up next to the fireplace with a warm afghan, a hot chocolate, and a book in the winter. In my mind, the house had a fireplace.

After I married, I still drove by past the house from time to time...just not as frequently. Then one day, I saw it...a FOR SALE sign! I rushed home to check MLS and was thrilled to finally see pictures of the inside. Lovely, just as I knew it had to be. Not much in the way of square footage. In fact, a one room apartment in New York City probably has more space. It sold fairly quickly, at a price far too high for such a property, but I thought it was worth it. Someone else obviously loved it too.

I haven't thought about this little house for some time. Today, on a whim, I drove past. I was horrified! There it was, sitting innocently like Carl Fredrickson's house in the movie "Up".  It was overshadowed and almost swallowed by what can only be described as a hideous and gargantuan monstrosity. The larger houses were still off on one side and the site of the empty lot near the carport now had this.
Clearly, this was becoming someone else's dream. To me, it's a nightmare.

What can I say? All my little fantasy bubbles burst at the moment I saw this. My flowy, flowered dress disappeared, as did the easel, and the paints. The flowers in the garden wilted. The picnic table collapsed. The books were gone and the fireplace vanished. Now there's nothing left but a sad and empty space in my mind where there were once lovely pictures of an adorable little house and an imaginary life.

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