The Auld Sod – here and there…

Rumpole, Renaissance Man, Glasgow Girl and Mousey have travelled to the Auld Sod, Scotland, to visit Glasgow Girls mother and to make the pilgrimage to the Gathering of the Clans in Edinburgh. I am left behind, thankfully, to tend to the animals and the garden, in its current incarnation.

Rumpole has been keeping me updated with news of their various doings via e-mail. Mousey is not acclimatizing at all to the time change and she keeps them up until 3am at night. Rumpole finds himself having to drive the busy streets of Glasgow in a hire car; he is terrified of driving on the left hand side of the road, which, surely, takes some getting familiar with. Glasgow Girl is partying with her school mates, and Mouse is entertaining the neighbourhood matrons and little children with her own peculiar brand of Canadian wild childhood. Rumpole and Renaissance Man are doing father and son bonding and trekking around Glasgow taking in the sights and getting lost. I am happy watering and critter entertaining, so all is well with the Stepford-Rumpoles.

Yesterday, Lookingforbeauty, Moira, OurLady of PerpetualCrisis and I had a yard sale chez moi on what had to be the hottest day of our summer yet. I tried to offload such interesting items as Rumpole’s old pre-amp, kitchen chairs, crystal, my favourite conversation piece – my Osama Bin Laden Zippo-clone lighter, some jewelry that hasn’t seen the light of day in 20 years, rubber boots, a vintage 1930s pedestal ashtray of interesting provenance ( it comes from a demolished funeral home and has been the repository of many extinguished cigarette butts from generations of mourners), a crab trap, a dressage helmet and hand-painted mexican tiles.

Osama got a lot of varied responses from the die-hard Garage salers out and about on this hellish morning; some outright indignation, some chortling and some questioning – “Where on earth did you get this?” I managed to offload…er, sell, Rumpole’s pre-amp, and have already decided what to do with the loot gotten for its sale. He may not exactly approve, but he won’t be here to weigh in with negative comments on what I plan to do with the money. I also sold some jewelry. And that was that.

We girls decided that our Yard Sale was a bust. None of us did at all well for all the work involved in hoisting stuff outside, setting up and sitting sweltering in the sun for 4 hours, let alone the bringing stuff back inside when the sale time was up. We figured our timing for the sale was off – too hot, wrong time of the summer, we didn’t have stuff people wanted. But who’s to know? Except for Lookingforbeauty, the rest of us were Garage Sale beginners. Honestly, I didn’t like the whole experience, not being cut out for the badinage required to engage prospective buyers. I hate stuff, anyway, and the less stuff I have the more at ease I find myself.

Today I languished, wiped out by the experience. So I did three loads of laundry and cleaned the basement floor. I hung out the laundry to dry, which happened really fast, it being infernally hot again today. No complaints here.

This afternoon, I invited Lookingforbeauty over to harvest some zucchini, while I harvested some lettuce about to bolt and some sorrel for dinner to which Lookingforbeauty invited me and another friend. We got a good crop; especially one spectacularly large zucchini which I plan to wrap, Furoshiki style and gift, anonymously and with great night-time stealth, to my neighbours Gary and Laurie.

Boy, will they be surprised tomorrow morning. And will Rumpole be delighted that I have less zucchini to process and freeze to augment winter dishes, unbeknownst to him, and ostensibly to convert him, although he is completely unwilling to become a zucchini consumer.

5 Responses to “The Auld Sod – here and there…”

  1. Deborah Barlow Says:

    This was so comforting to read. I have missed sharing your life with you. So glad to have your point of view back and available again.

  2. wrjones Says:

    Wish I could have sat at that yard sale and watched you ladies work your magic while I sipped on cold lemonade.

  3. lookingforbeauty Says:

    Despite the lack of financial success, we had a good time. It was a beautiful day, if somewhat too hot. Moira looked wonderful, sitting under the apple tree on a blanket with her books spread before her, the shadow of the tree decorating her plain white blouse. It was pure “Normal Rockwell”.
    And I think we might have been happy to have ol’ wrJones sipping a cold lemonade and telling his stories as we whiled away our time waiting for the elusive customers.
    In some ways, our stuff-ridding was successful. I took home things that you were selling, Moira took home things I was selling and you… Well, you got rid of some stuff. At least we traded around some of our goods and we’ve sorted out our basements.

  4. ybonesy Says:

    It’s my experience that garage sales are hard work for little reward. Of course, my sister always does great at them, but she is a yard sale expert. She also focuses a lot on clothing–small items, small price. She sells plenty and racks up good money. She also lets things go for super cheap, which, being that I’m super cheap, I’ve never quite been able to master. What?! Less than $10 for my lamp…but I paid $90 for that!? Yep, she sells my stuff, but I have to just let go of the idea that any of it is worth more than she sells it for.

  5. suburbanlife Says:

    Deborah – it’s good to be active again a bit on this blog. G

    wrjones – Lookingforbeauty is so good at this garage sale thing. We had fun, even though the heat was deadly. G

    Lookingforbeauty – you were and ARE a gem, fun to hang out with and good for advising us all on garage sale etiquette. Wrjones could have sat under the shade of the apple tree and entertained us with his doings.! G

    ybonesy – not all of us possess the “sales”gene. I, for sure, don’t. Was so happy to have lookingforbeauty’s reality checks delivered in her deadpan manner. Won’t be doing another one of these for a long, long time. Hate it! G

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