Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Where I Wake

This is where I wake every morning. And I'll admit that, if I move, I'm going to miss this room.

The thing is, I don't have to move. I just found out yesterday that I can live here for another six months. But he's raising the price by 100 yuan per month (from 350 to 450), and I'd have to be out after that. Even without the price change, I would feel ridiculous painting this place and really making it home when I'm only going to be here for a little while.

And if I don't, I'm going to feel like I'm in transition that entire time. Few things sound worse.

Right now, actually, I really want to explore the possibility of living in a pingfang--a small, one-story area with different rooms in a square around a small courtyard. My boss isn't so keen on me living in one, though.

Perhaps with good reason.

They're heated with a coal stove, so depending on whether you recently put coal in, in the winter they're usually either really hot or freezing. They don't really have places to wash, so I'd have to use a public shower (but I've been showering less often anyways). They can be sort of unsanitary, with the bathroom the type that you have to have shoveled out. And they tend to be full of coal dust.

But it's a more traditional home, and you get a yard, and it's generally just a more peaceful, natural setting. I'd also have more control over when I could leave and come home, and I could really make the place home. I've never been someone who's shied away from difficult things, and I feel like the times when I'm most comfortable are the times when I fall away from Dad. Perhaps it's idealizing the situation, but I can imagine waking up to cold in the night, throwing some more coal in the stove, and reading the Office of the Night Watch before going back to sleep. I feel like the type of maintenance such a place needs does good things for my soul, even if at times it's a hassle or frustrating.

What I'm saying, in short, is that I may need a good, warm sleeping bag after all.


Haley Shaw said...


Seth Riddley said...

keep writing, drew. i like coming to this site every once in a while to see what you're up to. i'm still in south carolina for the time being, and i know for a fact that many, many people here love you, are praying for you, and are supporting you from a distance.

peace to you,

Amy Beth Sawyer said...

Hey Drew-
So good to see you Monday night. I read this article and thought of you. Enjoy!


Cate Raff said...