The Cool House: Surprise Visit

Friday, June 29, 2012

Surprise Visit

Eight years ago, June 29 2004, a day not quite as hot nor as humid as today we loaded up beach car and a pantechnicon of furniture and drove the twenty miles from Port Washington to our new home. We had one set of keys that we didn't need because the house was unlocked and a seven year plan to renovate this house.

I wanted to celebrate this anniversary but it's been a trying couple of weeks and I couldn't think of anything suitable to do. Then, just before six o'clock there was a knock on the front door. I opened it expecting to see a neighbour but a stranger stood on the bluestone step. "I hope you don't mind but we were passing. I used to live here. I just wanted to see the house and the property."

I was thrilled and a little trepidatious (would she approve of the changes we'd made?) to show her and her husband over the house. She seemed pleased with what we'd done and what we'd kept in place. She recognised her pink sectional we had recovered and the sandstone tile wall that her father had installed himself and she LOVED the kitchen. She was surprised that I knew which had been her bedroom and laughed when I showed her why. Inside the desk drawer is a sticker that bears her name. A tiny, trivial piece of 70s history that has survived forty-four years; removal, redecoration and remodel.

Her husband mentioned he read this blog and that I don't update it regularly anymore. It's true, after eight years most of the work is finished (although the pool is demanding serious attention) so there isn't as much to write about. But just in case he checks in, here's a photo from 2004 - a photo of the original owner's youngest daughter's bedroom to bring back some more memories. Bright green shag carpet! Thanks for dropping by, making this day special and marking the anniversary for me.

Dedicated to Mrs Diane Lipman RIP


Anonymous said...

Love your updates! I live upstate now but I attended a tag sale at 77 Bay Ave in Huntington Bay yesterday. Lovely area.


modernemama said...

Next time you are in the neighborhood call me, I always open the door...

Nadine @ BDG said...

How nice! I sometimes wonder what the previous owners would think of our redo of our house. I actually went back to my grandmother's house in Jersey City, and wouldn't you know, it was for sale. I posed as a buyer and revisited my favorite spaces. Most were remodeled and unrecognizable, but there were a few that were intact. So fun.

Nadine @ BDG said...

So cool! I often wonder what the previous owners of my house would think of our renovations. I went back to my grandmother's house in Jersey City to discover it was for sale. Posing as a buyer, I snooped around. So much had changed, but a few nuggets of familiarity remained the same.