April 16, 2017 (Sunday)

by Yule Heibel on April 15, 2018

I can at last see little green buds, the promise of leaves about to unfurl into big green, all-encompassing blankets, on a few of the trees outside my window. At finally fucking last. It only took till well past the middle of April.

Yesterday, W. and I walked that Masconomo loop in Manchester-by-the-Sea (MBTS), the one that goes into private road territory. We walked past all the “cottages,” including Lilliothea (allegedly a name given the house by Buffalo Bill, visiting the owner; Buffalo Bill claimed it was an Indian word meaning something about a place on a hill with great views…). Lilliothea is being massively renovated, but into what? A huge chunk of ledge has been blasted away, a steel reinforcing suggests a box about to be built in the hole. A parking garage? Are “they” – the owners, architects, and team – turning it into condos? How would they ever get permission from the town for such a thing? Is someone creating their own private gilded age? When was a gilded age ever not private?

After we exited the private road section and were back on the public town road at the end of our loop, just before rejoining Masconomo, I spied a magnolia tree, valiantly trying to flower. The suggestion of buds was there. In a couple of days it will finally bloom. Today promises to be stinking hot (80s).

Back to MBTS: how on earth did that story ever get made into a film set in Manchester? Its narrative of working class stiffs whom tragedy befalls is so out of character with the town’s self-image as guardian and preserver of a certain Gold Coast je n’est sais quoi. Nobody in tony MBTS would admit to being a janitor or a sorta-kinda subsistence fisherman. That’s Gloucester milieu. I guess “Glosta-by-the-Sea” didn’t have the same ring (never mind that half the audience wouldn’t know how to pronounce Gloucester anyway). And maybe Beverly Hospital was more advanced and starkly photo- or cinemagenic than the Gloucester hospital (Addison)? But the funeral home was a somewhat run-down one – or rather, located on a rundown section of street …in Beverly. Again, so not MBTS. May as well call a movie “Marblehead” and make it all look like Saugus. I overheard someone at the dentist’s office talk about recognizing Lynn, which was being passed off as Quincy.

We slept late, but tomorrow it’ll be up by 6:15a.m. for reelz – i.e., the whole week. I’m still not sure what routine to settle on, whether the writing isn’t better when it really is done more or less first thing.

Now that nature is unfurling, all kinds of additional house work is heading my way, too. Yard work, gardening, dealing with contractors. My deck is crumbling. The property needs a spring cleanup. Rotted window sills need replacing, trim needs painting.  Awnings on these south-facing windows would be nice to have, etc. Decisions to make, without end. Love it or hate it, we’ll be here for a few more years to come, which means we have to maintain the place and fix what’s broken.

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