Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Content in Concord

H, sweet B, Jasper the Wonderdog, and I arrived in New Hampshire Saturday, after dropping A off at the airport to fly back to Minnesota. We are gradually settling into the apartment H and A have taken on a year’s lease (he’ll join her here in June). We got heaven-sent help and support (and a meal!) last Sunday from D, B, and T, who “did” the kitchen for us (more on this in future post). Bless them, bless them, bless them.

We’re still existing in a sort of genteel squalor, working on the place mostly in the evenings after H gets home and B is in bed. We should be in decent shape by the end of weekend, when we will have had time to sort out the last few boxes, though I think we’ll still have to visit Goodwill and the Salvation Army for more lamps, some side tables, and a shelving unit or two.

Concord is the capital of New Hampshire, and we are at the political dead-center of the Live Free or Die state: the the capitol building itself is less than a quarter-mile from the house. Its dome is featured in the view from my window:

I check out the neighborhood on morning and evening walks with J the W, and we agree it’s varied. As we would near all state capitols, we pass a significant number of lawyers offices in old houses, mostly restored and rather posh; some associations, non-profits and the like; single-family residences, almost all nineteenth-century and ranging from lovely to shabby; and some larger multi-story houses of similar age and range of appearance. Ours is a big old house with nice landlords and three apartments, reasonably attractive on the outside, clean but basic inside. As with a lot of these old places, electrical outlets are few and far between, supplied lighting is dim, and the kitchen was never meant to be a kitchen. We have the second and third floors (I sleep up there—it’s really an attic with no direct heat beyond what finds its way up the staircase, but that is sufficient, and the space will be fine once I get the bed put together and my things organized). At the moment, we have no key to the mailbox on the front porch (the previous tenant accidentally took it with her), so we are receiving our bills and catalogues in a small red Thermos drinks cooler we set out.

I am, of course, with H and B, so living arrangements here are essentially perfect.

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