Plans: Written in 1999

Tony and I are in the beginning stages of remodeling our house. Our children, Ana’Lis and Tony, are growing rapidly, and the thirteen hundred square foot house we own needs to expand to fit our needs. The location of the house is fine, but we desperately need some major changes. We anticipate doubling the size of the house by adding two more bedrooms and a full bath downstairs as well as remodeling the kitchen. Also, by enlarging the upstairs, we will relocate the laundry room from the downstairs to upstairs and create a master bath and bedroom. In order to make this fantasy house a reality, we decided to draw up some floor plans of what we currently have and then expand on them to make what we want.

Hours spent meticulously measuring and drawing every inch of our living space. First, we measured downstairs in the kitchen next, the laundry room and then the living and dining rooms. Upstairs, we measured the bedrooms and the scrawny bathroom. Careful measuring of spaces sounds like a simple task, but if a mistake occurred in the process, the finished drawing could be out of kilter. We wanted to see exactly what we have and remodel from that point forward. Finally, the floor plans were complete. They started as pristine documents full of promise and hope for the future. On one of the hottest Sundays in August, I set out to make several copies of the carefully hand drawn images of the house we call home. It was late in the morning, and the air was torrid, dry and quiet. Because it was so hot, I rolled down all every car window and blithely sandwiched the papers between the windshield and the dashboard. I had a fleeting notion that I should anchor the papers down on the dashboard with a weight or place them under my purse on the passenger’s seat, but I reckoned it was not windy outside and the papers would be safe. I slowly drove out of our cul-de-sac and turned down the quiet road. National Public Radio was chattering on the radio and I was distracted. As I drove to the marketplace for copies of the plans, I was thriving on the idea that Tony and I finally have started to make some changes to our house.

So the radio was on, the windows wide open, and the documents were fluttering on the dashboard. Suddenly, like an invisible hand, a gust of wind picked up my papers and out the driver’s window, they swooped. All my attention shifted to the papers as they separated from each other and my grasp. I could not believe my eyes. I gasped. I had to move fast.

The traffic was slow: I was fortunate that I did not cause an accident. As I got out of the car to recover the papers, I witnessed that one of them had blown about eighty feet south of where I stood. To my horror, it was dancing with the wind and gravity. Next, a white devil car ran over it with its front left tire. Dodging traffic, I scurried over to the paper and rescued it from future entanglements. I had one in my hand, but where was the second document? Other bits of garbage lay on the road, for example, a broken beer bottle, a crumpled shopping bag, and a plastic something weathered in the road.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a tall blond woman with a sixty’s hairstyle and Birkenstock sandals three houses away doing something with her purple tent. Perhaps, airing it out from a trip. Other than me, it seemed she was the only other soul alive. The woman merely stared at me blankly when I frantically asked if she had seen the second paper. A moment later, I saw the errant paper. I was grateful the day’s weather was not one of those notoriously stormy August days the Northwest has a reputation for having, for the water from the rain would have demolished both the papers. A Whoosh of tires sounded. After I quickly retrieved that document, I mentally noted the texture of the pockmarks on it from where the tire of the car had run over it and created oddly cryptic Braille. That car I did not see.

Plans: Written in 1999


Maryville, United States

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Artist's Description

I wrote this piece several years ago and wanted to share it with you. Yes the incident really happened but we never did modify the home. We purchased the sleepy home in1995 for $72,095.00 and today someone is trying to sell it for over $217,000.00. I hope it sells…

Artwork Comments

  • Agnes McGuinness
  • solareclips~Julie  Alexander
  • amarica
  • izzybeth
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desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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