The refrigeration business slows down in winter. It’s the time when we catch up on household chores, take a vacation and spend quiet time together. This year, though, it seems to have become a winter of discontent. We have begun shopping for a new address.
Our house is sufficient; we have 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms for only 2 people. We don’t entertain guests often but when we do, everyone fits just fine.
During warm months, when we are busy making a living, we don’t think too much about our lack of pantry or coat closet or why I still have packed boxes after three years. Or the mess in the neighbor’s back yard. Ah, but when our work slows down, we think.
And we’ve become discontent. Now we not only think we need the above mentioned niceties, we need a two-car garage and a corner lot, a fireplace (in Texas) and a library.
This last is really a man cave for Dan but wouldn’t it be really cool to have a tidy place for all our books?
To be fair, I will disclose that one of our bedrooms is currently used as an office. We really do run the air conditioning company out of our home. It takes two desks, three file cabinets, two printers and a closet.
Our guest room is full of surplus clothes—ours—and model airplane wings. It looks like a giant walk-in closet. Friends and family who occasionally sleep over are privileged to examine our wardrobe and dream of flying.
Still and all, we enjoy and appreciate our house. Tremendously. I think we’ve discovered how much as we shop around for a replacement.
For instance, do you know how many nice homes have a parking place for an oversized work van with a ladder on top? We didn’t realize how rare this is until we started looking.
Most houses also do not have five by eight picture windows front and rear, or handy gutter screens, or 350 acres of wilderness at the back door, or foxes that visit.
So far, all of the houses in the market are lacking something. Or are completely out of our price range. Or have nice features we really don’t want, like a swimming pool.
Surely we’ll struggle through this winter of our discontent somehow. If we find a new house to fall in love with, we’ll move. If not, we could build more cabinets and give away books and sell some clothes on eBay this winter.
If nothing else, I console myself, our discontent will certainly pass with the cold weather!
(The Winter of Our Discontent is John Steinbeck’s last novel, published in 1961. The title is a reference to the first two lines of William Shakespeare’s Richard III: “Now is the winter of our discontent / Made glorious summer by this sun of York…” in 1594. The press applied the term to the labor strikes in the UK in 1978-79. It’s just catchy, isn’t it, and rather timeless?)