Leaving my hometown is like being shoved from Narnia into—well, here: nicked, scuffed and bruised around the edges NoHo, where some residents use tin foil or bedsheets as curtaining. Here, there are multi-colored pedestrian crossings, a low-slung library named for Amelia Earhart (who lived in nearby Toluca Lake until she vanished) and snarly pavement sweepers who don’t mind letting you know they’re outraged you’re strolling your baby and talking on your cell phone at the same time. And there’s that park as large as a small sea—flanked by incessantly hissing freeway. And here there are many vacant lots losing all of their prosperous-potential via massive sinkholes from the recent rains, rusting chainlink fencing afflicted with a sag and sway lacking any poetry. Any.
But though Santa Barbara was encased in gray cloud on my last visit—still my beach offered a quiet walk next to ruffled surf and wending dolphins, a brisk/brusque wind in my face clearing NoHo from my eyes. Though I couldn’t see Santa Cruz Island offshore, just knowing it was there was certain antidote to stressing over house hunting. Peace. I felt some peace for about 53 hours, give or take T’s middle of the-night-wakings. And joy. I felt some of that, too.
When my husband returned from work this evening to tell me our offer was not accepted on the little house we’re rabidly interested in, when he told me there were 17 offers on the little house with the huge yard we so coveted, 8 of them cash offers, finding, or rather recalling that Santa Barbara peace here, in NoHo, is the test, my test, especially tomorrow, when, beach-deprived, I drive my son to yet another park as substitute for no back yard. Becuase I’m not going to cry. Or punch holes in walls or closets, or all alone bemoan our outcast state. Obviously, we’re not outcasts—we’re lucky lakeside condo owners. Obviously, I’m not alone–and by the beard of Zeus (or somebody’s beard or, more likely, boobs) I have that baby. I will keep having faith—in that I can have faith—faith in the universe, say, and its winking favorably on house hunters wishing for back yards and, someday, ocean views in my hometown where my small family will be casually, causally (right? right! because, Auntie Em, I want to come home) living, faith-held. And with Obama as President.
The problem with going home and feasting on excessive beauty? No problem. No problem at all. Just—
by the boobs of Zeus, give the kid a yard. Please?