I signed up for a writer’s retreat in Boise Idaho, hosted by Elaine Ambrose. Write By the River boasted a peaceful retreat in a cabin, nestled in the Idaho mountains. I signed up immediately. I was ready to feel like Thoureau, writing in a snug little cabin in the woods. I planned to sit on the deck and watch the fish jump in the lake. The birds would serenade me over morning coffee. I’d be inspired, renewed and write my best work ever.
I flew to Boise and was fetched at the airport by Elaine. She had a blonde woman in the car who had a huge smile and a very warm presence about her. Donna Tagliaferri would soon become a dear friend.
Elaine had generously prepared bedrooms in her home for our stay before we headed to the mountains with a few other women writers.
My room was down the hall, to the right, and across from Donna’s. I felt like a princess. The room was decorated with more than the comforts of home. The thick bedspread, the comfy pillows, the mattress that held me captive in bed in the morning hours.
Donna’s room was the grandchildren’s room. A trundle-bed, stuffed animals and bright colors screamed, “Sleep over time!” I heard Donna giggling with delight.
We huddled in the kitchen over piping hot coffee in the morning. Elaine scampered around getting the final touches ready for the retreat. Donna and I marveled at the large kitchen and Elaine’s finishing touches.
The long wooden table for family gatherings stretched the length of the dining area. This house was made with love. It held love. I swear, if this house could talk it would scream, “I love Elaine!”
And now she’s decided to sell this house to enjoy retired life, without maintenance. I get it. I know the feeling.
I am not a fan of goodbyes. I’ll miss my bedroom and our times at that house. I’ll miss laughing on the patio and the chats over coffee. I’ll miss the wine at sunset as we shared stories like old friends. I’ll miss the feeling of that house.
I might even miss the Koi pond. I’ve never cried over a fish yet, but that could change.
Of course, I am excited for Elaine and Ken’s new chapter. A new home brings new energy, excitement and future memories.
Still, I might just have to shed a tear or two. Once I get past the goodbye, I’m pretty good at hello.
I just have to get through the farewell.
Yes, I’m definitely missing the Koi now.
I hope the new owners don’t mind if we arrive for a sleepover. Donna and I will be taking a trip down Memory Lane on Cherry Bellow one day soon. I better remind the new owners that my room is on the right….just across the hall from Donna’s. We’ll both be giggling with delight at our reunion on Cherry Bellow Drive.
Laurie O'Connor Stephans says
When my aunt decided to sell her house, she let us big girl cousins have one final sleepover. I’m not a crier, but I stood on the sidewalk the next morning and wept. Thank God the great memories will always remain. Good luck on sneaking back in someday!