Bare Walls to Bare Walls

I hate the time in the whole moving process when you have to take down the carefully choreographed wall decorations that have been your statement in the house for years. And now one day you have to come in and start stripping the walls of their character to reveal the bare, bleak world you moved into only years before. Often things tell some of our history, they define our taste (or lack of it?) and they make cozy places for resident spiders to build their homes. We have some sizable flat spiders we call “picture spiders” because they like to live behind pictures, always a nice surprise when you take one off the wall?

Then comes the patching and matching, and in my case I have a wide variety of textures to match and a very wide variety of colors to attempt to match. Some are easy, some approach impossible and everything in between. I mean, I have all the original paint, I was the one who mixed and applied it – but now, every patched nail/screw hole stands out like a huge sign saying “STEVE HUNG SOMETHING HERE” – or “GIANT WALL PATCH HERE”?

And so even though there are almost 4 weeks, the house becomes denuded of it’s character. I once told the owners “you gave it good bones and good structure – I gave it character”. I had expected them to come in with 40 gallons of yellow and cover over all my “character” but then that’s ok, the Lord let Max and I share it for a time and we loved the heck out of it, almost beyond measure – but when the owners were here the other day they said they liked what I’ve done and will keep it and actually expand it out into the pool and terraza areas, so it’s nice to know a bit of us remains in Mexico. But, as I walk through my little world I see things that I wanted to do, but never got done, so we leave unfullfilled in some respects.

I think that is the curse my Mother gave to me, she was an artist and quite accomplished, but while she didn’t give me the talent, the capability to sit and paint a picture, she gave me the temperament of an artist in ways. My Father was more an engineer, a builder and from him I derive the need and the ability to build, to fix, to make things better. From Mom I find the creative need to do whatever I can, but the big difference is that engineers and builders work in groups to complete their projects, then walk away happy. The artist is a loner, groups don’t paint pictures, only a singular person. They are never completely happy with their creation and no one is worthy of judging their work, only they can. There is always one more little thing that needs to be done – yet never gets done, so that resides in me, I’m never completely happy with my work, my creations.

I didn’t bring much “decor” from Texas, it’s still in storage up there, so I picked pre-Columbian as the theme for the house for several reasons, it seemed appropriate being in MX, it gave a different look to the place that you don’t see all that often, nothing like plaques with snakes and guys with tongues sticking out to say “home sweet home”? – and basically it was readily available in Tonala – and #1, it was cheap!

Now, do I take it back NOB? – no, I still have more “decor” in storage than the new place can support, although, I will take a few pieces from here just for conversation. So, do I sell the stuff, give it away or store it? Well, while most if mundane, there are a few pieces of metal art and sculpture that I would like to retain, so yes, I’m considering yet another storage area here, the very reason I’m going back to TX to eliminate – who says older is wiser?

And, of course I’m leaving bare walls (although nicely repaired if I do say so myself – and I do) and moving to bare walls – what a way to live? Tomorrow is August 4th, in a month, Sept 1st, Max and I will drive out the front gate for the last time and head for the next chapter in our adventure in Texas. I thought leaving the house in Lakeway would kill me, but it didn’t, sometimes I think leaving this place will kill me, but it won’t. I originally came here for 6 months and stayed 7 years, fully 10% of my entire life, so who knows what the next chapter will bring for Max and me?