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The Last Place I Will Ever Live

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 12 58

Contemplations of a very safe place to be

-- with a nod to the Souls who have passed this way before --

I am having a hard time finding a place to categorize this article which, at this point, is only a title with this one sentence.

It may well end up in philosophical concepts because I am just musing about my life or the last third of it, as I see it.

I was a baby once long ago in my Mama's arms.  If that was a very safe place to be, I am never sure.  It should always be a very safe place to be but sometimes lessons we all need to learn start early.  I do know my Mama was my unfatigued champion and I do find that without her in my life the world takes a sudden unfamiliar shift.  I wish I had gained the wisdom earlier in life to know you better, Mom, when you were here.

I was a child once long ago.  The oldest child of 4, "thus the little Mama" for them all.  If that was a very safe place to be I am never sure.  I think I enjoyed my role though I knew no other.  One of my little charges, the second to last, grew up, married, had two children and died too early at age 29. I wish I had gained the wisdom earlier in life to help you better, Nick, when you were here.

I was a teenager once long ago too.  If that was a very safe place to be, I am very,  very sure - no one told me about it.  Never will I personally refer to those years as a very safe place to be.  I think those very hard years with lessons learned happened that way because now it would be too much to accept. 

I was in my twenties once long ago.  If that was a very safe place to be, I must not have seen it because I left my life there and started another.  Thankfully and forever I was given the best gift available to womankind, a baby boy, who joined the journey with me.  The two of us forged ahead. I worked too much and missed too much, but today the baby boy who became a man solemnly promises that he would not change one thing.  Something the unconventional person, flying whichever way the wind blows, truly needs to hear - to be sure - when contemplations finds one pondering the last third of life.

I was in my thirties once long ago.  The day I turned 30 did not affect me at all.  Some of my friends were visibly upset at the thought they had joined the ranks of grown ups and by the sixties mantra, not to be trusted.  Since I had no intention of ever defining or limiting myself - it was just another day. If this was a very safe place to be - I cannot tell you for sure - but it was a great decade of self achievement. I did lose my great grandmother;  she was just shy of her 100th birthday. I was so lucky to still have a great grandmother! But it was so time for her to go - that big heart just would not stop.

I was in my forties once too. That day did not affect me either. If that was a very safe place to be, I will never be sure - but it was, although strife with the perils of the eccentric, a fairly happy time. Sadly, I did lose many family members during that decade.  But that is the way of the circle of life.  The older members of our lives move on and the newer members come forth to bring the innocence and joy that soften the impact.

I am in my fifties now.  Honestly forgot my birthday I was so busy. Apparently it did not bother me too much.  Having survived Hurricane Katrina and the severing of a life that I considered the best and surely the reason for which I was born was way worst than turning 50 years old!

The heart wrenching Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill and never to be forgotten Y2K debacle, (how exciting that was! - I knew we would survive) that some of us were seriously worried about are now on the look out for the 2012 Prophesies.  I have to say the world is kind of in a scary place. I find it not at all, a very safe place to be.  I say this in the global perspective because, in theory, I know the Mayan calendar will just start over.    In the personal perspective I am furiously gambling with both hands and trusting that all will work out as it should and always has. Miraculously, I have always landed on my feet......I have to believe that this time I will too.

Which brings us to the last place I will ever live. 

On last count of moving excursions, I had lived in 28 different places. That is a lot, I think.  All of these places were in the same Country, most even in the same State or adjoining States.  Apparently I like not to be tied down and some moves were for business not pleasure.

In 2008, Christmas Eve, I first laid eyes on the poorest, direst, droopiest little house I had ever encountered that was "For Sale" and not demolition, whilst delivering Christmas wishes and bottles of good cheer.

By 2009 - September 9th, (09-09-09) to be precise, this little droopy house was mine, papers signed.  By a mere perchance of fate someone had given me a piece of that very same house in 2007 to use at my current home.  A cypress swing painted in that old color green - that only comes with age. Who knew I would bring it home come 2011, hopefully sooner rather than later now.

I am within a month or two of moving into my little droopy home which has visibly perked up under my loving care and many a tear combined with blood, sweat, despair, and glimmers of hope.  My trees have many birds, squirrels, and doves to watch over me.  Doves have a special significance to my sister and I. We consider doves to be our Mother's and Grandmother's spirit-bird watching over us from heaven.  Our Guardian Angels so to speak.  The cuttings from my grandmother's garden, which interestingly originated from this very town at least 200 years ago,  are starting to thrive as well. It is as though they know they are home.

Since that day on September 9th, 2009, with all the interest shown in my droopy little house....people would and still drive, sometimes hours, to check on this little house that had stood empty for so long....and they would be so thrilled when I would invite them in to see the progress... that I now and then thought, why don't I flip it? and move back to the French Quarter that I know, love, and truly miss so much?  I even dared to speak the words aloud a few times.  Having owed and sold 3 homes and 2 commercial buildings before - with 2 little houses now waiting to be sold - the thought was not entirely foreign - although  flipping was not a term I was familiar with until it became popular on television reality shows.

But a couple of months ago, late in the day, I stopped what I was doing, looked around and realized that after THIS move, "I will never move again".  THIS will be the last place I will ever live.  This is it. This thought was so profound and right on, I put down the caulking gun I was using and had to sit down.

Contemplating this I thought, "I have never thought this before"! Ever! 

I always wanted to live in the bottoms of Big Sur country, the most spiritual place I ever encountered - before or since my first experience there. Allowing for the natural course of my life thus far - I figured the winds of change would one day blow me that way.

But no, sadly or not sadly, this is not true anymore.  I will not or never will live in the bottoms of Big Sur or any place else but my droopy little house.  It is an undeniable truth. It may as well be etched in stone it is so true.  I may see Big Sur again but I will never live there.  I may see Europe and travel the world but the days of young, young no holds barred, and nothing can stop me mentality have come to an end.

If this is a good thing or bad thing I don't know yet. If this is a very safe place to be I don't know yet.   It is a surprising thing, to be sure, an almost uncomfortable but comforting fact at the same time.  I guess it explains all the agonizing, almost killing days that have been encountered in my droopy little house, all by myself,  because it IS the last place I will ever live.

In fact, I must come to terms, not only is this the last place I will ever live BUT - if I am lucky enough - I will die here too. I am not trying to be morbid in any sense. Some of you will get this and some of you will not. But one day, for the ones who do not, the light-bulb will pop on. Lessons come at all stages and ages of life.

Now and without reservation whatsoever, my footsteps will join with the generations  that have crossed these old, forever scarred, bent, and marred thresholds that hold the secrets, joys, and sorrows of the souls who have walked these impossibly time-worn floors before me. If I listen with complete stillness - I can hear vague, ancient, whisperings welcoming me home.

But, dear readers, I need some help. At the bottom of this article you should see a before and an old but after photograph of the exterior of my little droopy house thus far. The photograph is about 6-9 months old. Though white in color right now I have uncovered many colors.  Greens, blues, reds, and grays of different hues.  In not trying to remodel but to RESTORE - my guess at the original color is not to be definitely found. I sincerely would like to know what color(s) you would use if my droopy little house were yours.

I am leaning toward two choices. #1: Two colors of dark olive green.  Mark Twain Green, the Valspar Historic Collection, for trim and a slightly not as dark olive for the body.  The house would just blend into the earth side... OR #2: She could majestically stay the old white house at the top of the hill that now has dark green shutters and the red door.

I find the same trouble in trying to name her so feel free to throw out names if one pops into your head - she needs a name, don't you think?  I must warn you - she is so free-spirited - don't let it scare you if a name DOES pop into your head - just jot it down.  She is a powerful one - that one. I know for a fact if she did not approve I would not own her or rather she own me!

Here she is - my droopy little house, which is undeniably the last place I will ever live. The last place to shelter, warm, and value me. And just as important, the last place that will allow me to love, nurture, learn, and create within her walls and ultimately grant me peace and a very safe place to be

Yes, she needs a name.



Credit: Venetia

After But Before Now

Credit: Venetia


Mar 17, 2011 9:22am
Great article, warm homey looking house. More of a cozy cottage I think, looks like a very safe comfortable place to be.
Mar 17, 2011 9:34am
I absolutely love this article, wow! What a read. My child, I think that you have arrived home. I feel as though your spirit will remain here long after you are gone. This will be your place of refuge and reflection, a place of rest. I can't think of a name, but I do believe"I get it!"
Mar 17, 2011 9:41am
Thank you Lynsuz! Yes, she is a cozy cottage and glad you like her. Hardly 900 sq ft! Truly appreciate you dropping by.
Mar 17, 2011 9:43am
Thank you pwarlick and thank you for "getting it". Oh, the tears are flowing now...must get out the door and get to work "making my home". Appreciate you stopping by.
Mar 17, 2011 9:54pm
Very nice. I have no suggestions on color or name. I have no artistic eye, but am amazed at some of the wonderful things people do with color.

You will have to put up another picture when you finally decide and paint it.
Mar 17, 2011 10:25pm
DKrunner: Thank you so much. You are correct...home ownership is NOT completely joyous. I rented for many years and loved it. Just a phone call and it was someone else's problem! I appreciate you stopping by.
Mar 17, 2011 10:30pm
dpeach: Thank you so much! I was thinking that exact thing today - met with painters for infomation - will have to post a photograph when she is all dressed up. Yes, the colors are frustrating - but I do love my little house. Thank you for stopping by.
Mar 19, 2011 1:03pm
What a great article and thought provoking, too. I think this feeling must be like meeting your "soulmate;" you just know that this is right and something monumental has taken place. Enjoy your home!
I vote for "...#2. She could majestically stay the "old white house at the top of the hill that now has dark green shutters with the red door".
Name suggestion: "Venetia Castle"
Mar 19, 2011 7:38pm
Well, thank you southerngirl09...and thank you for YOUR thought provoking suggestions! The name is cool too. It is definitely "in the hat - as are the colors"! I cannot thank you enough and will post when decision are made and done. Thank you for dropping in.
Mar 20, 2011 11:26am
Girl you are doing an awesome job, both in your writing here at InfoBarrel and on your home. I say home because that's what they become when you add heart and soul. Yours is receiving heart and soul from not only you but the generations that have preceded you. You would be crazy to leave all those fans, plus they need your worldly abilities.
Paint the house the greens you speak of and make that home part of the earth around it. I love this house and I know that feeling your talking about.
I've had that feeling and I got it again reading this article, thank you and yes administration should feature this article, as well as the places I'm about to send it, you should be starting to see the traffic it deserves.
Great job
and PS I have to see the floors when they're done so write another update when you get time for us all.
Mar 20, 2011 1:01pm
Thank you dreamaker...some things you have really influenced me on. Apparently my ramdom stumbling upon this site and meeting all of you in January 2011 was "meant to be". The olive greens are "in the hat" and I am very close to choosing those colors. The floors - are a sight to behold - am working on the last room and should finish by tomorrow if all goes well. I do plan to send you the before and after floor photos I promised, as well as post a photo of her colors on this article. Again, thank you for all the encouragement and advice you have shown me these last few months and this includes everyone else! (even if I do use IE - LOL) Peace today, V
Mar 20, 2011 3:18pm
Venetia, this is a beautiful story of your life and your home. I plan to share it with my friends. I sold real estate for many years, and know how rare it is for someone to find that connection to a home. I'm so glad that you did!
Mar 20, 2011 4:58pm
that was an awesome piece of work Venetia...........:)
Truly wonderful
Mar 20, 2011 6:54pm
Mar 20, 2011 8:12pm
Deborah-Diane - you are the sweetest person...thank you very much....everyone has been so kind. Yes, I am lucky; even with all the trials and tribulations that have accompanied this process in first securing the loan and then the many layers and levels in the uncovering and restoration processes. I appreciate you stopping by!
Mar 20, 2011 8:16pm
Thank you so much sushantkstr - you are awesome and truly wonderful yourself!
Mar 20, 2011 8:46pm
Westernmon - I love "retour la' maison"! Have been striving to come up with a name in French because I have the feeling when I DO have the time to research the history - she will have a French connection if for no other reason then the strong Acadian style bone structure. I will post the history of the house when I can get that accomplished. Thank you so much for your input and yes, the olive greens are "in the hat"! Wouldn't those flowers be just beautiful? Thank you so much!
Mar 21, 2011 1:35pm
How utterly brave of you to openly share your feelings in this article. I vote for green shutters on the white house! Something about the your "droopy little house" description calls out the name to me - Venetia's Nook. Best of luck with the work ahead.
Mar 21, 2011 3:23pm
divaonline,I am honored, a career writer like yourself dropped in to read my article. I have been trying to find the time to read others articles and really enjoyed yours that I did read! You are a true talent. It was not hard to write this - it just spilled out - with no plan whatsoever.Your comments are "in the hat" and the colors nearly 50/50 now. I will post her photo when dressed...(and whichever name she will hopefully agree to soon) LOL - Thank you so much! Venetia's Nook does have a nice ring doesn't it? I do appreciate you stopping by.
Mar 23, 2011 12:05pm
Beautiful and poetic. To be happy and content in your home is a blessing that some people who own mansions will never feel, but you have found it! "Home is where the heart is" and it appears your heart is quite at home in your "little droopy house." Whatever colors you choose will be the "right" ones. I wish you all the best!
Mar 23, 2011 10:56pm
Introspective-Thank you so much. After a very long day this is a treat to read and very needed. I appreciate you dropping by and your kind comments.
Peace tonight, V
Mar 25, 2011 12:27am
This is a truly inspiring article for anyone that is looking to buy a home. A home is so different from a house, and to me so many people live in houses, old homes have so much more charactor than the cold old brick and tile mansions. (sorry about that if you do own a B & T Home) I have owned them too, but sold our one close to the coast for a lil ol one like yours.
Ours is white too, (we had one many years ago two story which was white) and I told everyone that I live in the white house (which is what the premier of our state lived in in those days)

Stick to your wonderful find,that sure looks like a home and being in a home is where the heart is. There will be lots of memories there and maybe some friendly ghosts too.
Yes they take a lot of elbow grease and some days during the work you will wonder if it was worth it. BUT I reckon ours was and I bet yours will be too. By the way you have written this you will be happy here thats for sure.
Mar 25, 2011 12:30am
Just looked at the photo again. Is that a two story with little windows in the top. Funny thats what our first white house had too.
Mar 25, 2011 7:14pm
eileen, thank you so much...yes, there is a second story-undeveloped...it was the garconniere (where the young boys/male visitors usually slept) which was not taxed back in the day as there is no inside access - same reason I have no closets - they were taxed as a room because they had a door. I did restore the stair to the "garconniere" and have my A/C - heating unit & hot water tank up there.

I,too,love old houses and their ghosts...this one is circa 1820 - (carpenter's best guess) Plan to research the entire history which I think will be amazing because of some odd wall set-ups (but beautiful 14-16 inch cypress boards). I was extremely lucky that this house had never been remodeled except a kitchen/bath had been enclosed via the original back porch which had a good 8-10 inch slope (had to have house picked up & levelled). I didn't change one thing & strived to find the oldest sink, bathtub, etc. I did add the back porch back on too.

As for elbow grease - suffice it to say - have been in bed all day today!
(sounds as though you have an Acadian-style home as well?? My family originates from Nova Scotia & Nice, France)
I could go on forever..! I do thank you so much for your comment.
Mar 26, 2011 7:36am

Leading up to reading this article, I was a bit distraught over the low (or horribly inconsistent) earnings that accompany being a hard working writer in the early stages of this site's growth. While I truly believe this site has unlimited potential, I admit, I have been actively looking for other places to write...even if not to leave here completely, just to spread my wings. It's articles like these...and, your willingness to be so open and take complete strangers on a written masterpiece of this sort, are what make me love this site, and its community, so much. Where frustration from low earnings may occasionally abound, its articles like these that give me a glimpse into InfoBarrel's future.

As for your house, being the military guy that I am, I'd be perfectly content with a camouflage pattern...lol...honestly though, I wonder if this is something that some show on HGTV would have interest in helping out with?
Mar 26, 2011 10:46am
This comment has been deleted.
Mar 27, 2011 7:40am
x3: well THAT IS a wonderful compliment coming from a writer such as yourself. Thank you so much, You are a wonderful writer and I follow your words closely on the forums. Thank you so much for stopping by. I truly appreciate it.
Apr 1, 2011 10:11am
I was really hoping there would be photos as I was reading this! I LOVE your little house. I think white is a good way to go, myself. Though I would be tempted to trim in blue, to be honest. And add railings around the veranda (just love houses with big porches like that) to give it a more finished look . . . make sure you post another picture when you've finished!
Apr 19, 2011 11:16am
freelanceprowriter:thank you so much.....you know white is I believe the color she is going to be....being washed today! Yes, I would love to add more to the porch but not sure that is in the budget right now. Thank you for stopping by!
Apr 7, 2011 7:33pm
What a dear home, although I definitely sense spirit...something about the porch, and under the house. I tend to stick with white and a color for the shutters - maybe lemony. How fun for you to find your pace in this wild world. Thank you for the lovely share, and do let us know the outcome, please.
Apr 19, 2011 11:18am
footloose: thank you so much for stopping by and reading my article. There are definitely spirits in this house and she is very definitive about "things" or "changes" being done to her. LOL - I know it sounds a bit weird - but there it is. Thank you again.
Apr 8, 2011 1:39am
Yes, you are HOME! She is beautiful, and I cannot wait to see her all dressed up:)
Apr 19, 2011 11:18am
dgabbard: Thank you so very much. I appreciate your comment and will post when dressed:)
Apr 8, 2011 5:27am
Venetia - it is so good when you find your Home. I just added a link in my profile to my DREAM HOME - maybe you will find some inspiration in there (for colors or small design elements). Amazing article - I am so glad that you join this little warm community of InfoBarrels and contribute here in such a genuine way. Thanks a lot for inspiration. God bless. putting your love in this place make the true difference.
Apr 8, 2011 5:50am
"Putting your love in this place make the true difference. " - I just now realize that it is true - no matter the place's name - either it your house or InfoBarrel community or your work place.
Apr 19, 2011 11:20am
LoveSpaces: It is true - where you put your love comes back to you - I just love, love, love YOUR dream home. That is very cool and awesome is the only word I can come up with....I hope you achieve this house for yourself soon. Thank you again.
Apr 8, 2011 9:07am
Congratulations. This is a great feature article!!
Apr 19, 2011 11:21am
Lynsuz, thank you so much - I am very proud of this.
Apr 8, 2011 3:39pm
Hello, Venetia I've been waiting to see this house on the front page, great job girl and I hope all is well. (`;
Apr 19, 2011 11:22am
Hi dreamaker: Sorry not beeen around - but all good - trying to get moved and all.....will be a long process. My phone/internet line should be moved over by end of month. Thank you again for everything!:)
Apr 11, 2011 2:16pm
Oh my goodness Venetia, you know I love your writing but this one fair gave me goosebumps on my arms! What an amazing piece of work, both the article and the house. I have sent Serph to read it now, really really beautiful. Yes I too have sensed the spirits there, just from your reading and the pictures, I think they have bought you home and you now truly do have a safe place not only to be, but to blossom. As to the colours, I like the white, sorry, it is just so lovely as it is, it only needs new life breathing into it. And the name you already have love, it is your Tombant Petite Maison (sorry for the French not my forte), seemingly this means droopy little house though?
Bright Blessings on you both xxx
Apr 19, 2011 11:23am
CrystalNici: Thank you so much - I lIKE that name. Wow! You are so sweet and always my champion....thank you again. Oh, I do think "white" it will be as I am dreaming of her in that color. Thank you again.
Apr 11, 2011 2:20pm
Really great article! Gave me goosebumps :). For a name, I don't know why but I thought of Wren. I would love to have a home like that one day, and I think either of the color schemes would be just perfect!
Apr 19, 2011 11:25am
Serphinia: Thank you! "Wren" well, how cool is that?! I love that. By the way - I really love your picture. Thank you for your comment and stopping by.
Apr 20, 2011 4:11pm
That house has character and class i love the article
Apr 26, 2011 3:06pm
infobo724: thank you! Yes, she has characater and class...thank you for seeing it and thank you for your comment.
Apr 21, 2011 9:41am

I believe the house wants to be white.

manoir blanc
Apr 26, 2011 3:07pm
aguy: Thank you so much. Yes, I agree, she does want to be white. Thank you so much for dropping by.
May 1, 2011 8:24pm
I am new to infobarrel and read your story last night. It touched me and I wanted to write a response but had trouble logging in. I enjoyed your story so very much! I think you should paint your little house white and call it home.

May 2, 2011 7:15pm
Thank you DarleneMcFarlene - I appreciate your comment. She IS going to be white and is all caulked up as of now. The shutters are going to be black. I know...scarey stuff...but seems classy somehow. Hope it works. Thanks again.
May 6, 2011 11:03am
I can imagine your house with a porch swing and lots more flowers and a fruit tree, orange perhaps? And some sweet smelling flowers underneath your bedroom window. Glad you found your way home.
May 7, 2011 3:44am
MoGo, thank you so much. There is a porch swing waiting to be set up and towns oldest persimmion tree, (which bears an amazing crop of fruit) that is peeking into the picture....even the sweet smelling sweet olives are standing in front of the house. Your intuition is quite amazing.
May 7, 2011 11:40pm
Your article is the first one that I read, and I like it very much. Twice now I have said I was never moving again...I think it has been 14 times, so you are a little ahead of me in that. I think the Olive green would be lovely, though it would change the "Little White House on the Hill" conotation, which seems a little sad...but it could become the "Little Green House on the Hill." A name would be nice...I think it deserves one. Good luck to you!
May 9, 2011 12:01pm
bjarena: I just read your intro and like you - in about 6 months I will be a granny for the first time and I, too, have one son. No, I don't have the loving husband as of yet so count yourself lucky on that one! Good luck here at IB. Everyone will be glad to help and the forums are chock full of information. I appreciate you stopping by and leaving a comment.
ps: She has decided to be white with black shutters and dark red doors. A pic will be added when finished.
Jun 12, 2011 1:55am
Yay! White is definitely right.

You know - I think this is the most comments I've ever seen on an article here.

I wonder if there are any with more....

Did you settle on a name yet?

I vote for manoir blanc.
Jun 12, 2011 1:56am
Or - %4u%0lq '91ou%0&F
Jun 13, 2011 6:03pm
Hi aguy! The body (of the house) HAS been painted white. Long process...tons of chaulk, F'Sure! The shutters are a deep velvet black and awaiting 2nd coat(s). The doors will be a deep red (Spanish Red). The porches are not complete but are a deep grey w/ a bluish cast. Strong, deep colors! (this ole madame did not want to be wimpy apparently) There will be photos posted.

It is those wooden windows that (I think) have scared the painters away for now.. AUGH - There are 9 total with 12 panes each. (great old wavy glass)..and all need reglazing/repair.

I am sure my neighbors are thinking WHEN will she finish that house! and clean up that yard!! - I cringe myself everyday when I see it & pray the termites don't spot the spent lumber that I am loathe to "just throw away" b/c shelving, for instance, needs to be done...and well, just quite a lot left to do. But the cool thing is I am "living" here..sleeping on a cot until a last few things in my bedroom are done...and the rest of the furniture can be brought in. Kinda just chillin' a bit too. I am tired and hurting...not to mention my other house needs my attention as well before IT can be sold or rented.

All is just great and I am lucky. (I do like Maison Blanche' or Manoir Blanc)

I have to assume your comment: "%4u%0lq '91ou%0&F" is a good thing? Do tell!! Thanks for your support. Sure appreciate it! (and everyone else - this update is for you too should you happen upon it w/ many thanks)
Peace today,V
Dec 17, 2011 3:10am
This is the great article. When I read this article, I really felt that I knew you.
Oct 2, 2013 12:49pm
Quite interesting, Venetia!

Take this in a good way Please! You seem to be a lovable soul with great values, but gets misdirected or 'lost", at least a certain amount. You're trying to put your finger on it, but are unsure. This article is really very sweet! It's somewhat unique on Infobarrel.

It's far from the hustle and bustle of "normal life" here. Nonetheless, it's quite impressive that you chose this little house. It may not be the last place you live, just as my house here, which I've lived in for 33 years, may not be my last living place.

If we become too sick, we may end up elsewhere, but not because we want to. I would like to live somewhere else, but I can't afford it! Lol!

What have you been doing? (Drop by and see my brand new article - I'm sure you'll really like. It's about: 50 years of Sukiyaki and Kyu Sakamoto - that wonderful duo!)

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