Monday, July 11, 2005

Looking Back to Friday

Friday, I actually woke up in a good mood. I was early for work, I was cheery, I laughed a lot all day. I was excited about my plans for the evening, and was looking forward to a night out with friends. I worked from 9 until 5 and didn't bitch about anything. I was really happy.

However...

The unfortunate part of the day came just after work. As I pulled up to my house, I saw that my driveway was full of cars: Three, to be exact. One belonged to the realtor and two belonged prospective buyers for the lovely home I call my own. I hated them instantly. Not only because they may buy "my" house (I say "my" because I do not own it - Joe does - but I like to pretend to claim ownership.), thereby kicking me out of it...But also because they were blocking my spot in the garage. My hatred of them was only compounded when I entered the house to be greeted by five adults (including the realtor) and by not one, not two, but SIX children...

Now, I really like children. I've always wanted to have one or two of my own. But I had been working all day, and the children were not my own (or my adorable Godson, Adrian), and they did nothing but scream from the moment I walked through the door. These were not cries of pain, but rather shrieks of joy, merriment and excitement. Maybe it was because they liked the sounds of their voices, maybe it was because of the suprisingly excellent acoustics in this large house...Or maybe it was just because they knew how much it pissed me off to hear children screaming after a long day at work...But they were relentless.

After introducing me to most of the clan, the realtor suggested I head upstairs while they finished checking out the house. Then, to my horror, down the stairs came the man of the family. He's one of my customers! It freaks me out that my customer now knows not only where I live, but also what my room looks like. I was completely skeeved out. But I said a gracious hello, then joked that the fine print of the sales contract dictates that I come with the house.

"Oh!" The mother of the brood laughed. "Do you babysit?"

I forced a smile. "Uh, ha-ha. That's not in the contract." I gave a halfhearted laugh and excused myself to head upstairs.

I needed to change out of my work clothes and into something more casual, so I picked out an outfit, and started to change. Only I couldn't. Because I was conscious of the eleven strangers wandering around downstairs AND the fact that my bedroom door doesn't have a lock. I just couldn't chance my customer coming upstairs and seeing me naked. So I hustled into the bathroom where, thankfully, there is a lock. Because - wouldn't you know it - as soon as I took off my pants, the doorknob was jiggled. "Is the lady in there?" one of the adults asked. "I think so," replied another.

Yes, obviously the "lady" is in here! I wanted to scream. But, instead, I offered a timid, "Yeah." and they giggled out an apology and moved on through the hallway.

Once my transformation from Work Day to Early Friday Night was complete, I emerged from the bathroom and headed into my room, where I intended to wait out their visit. But they just kept staying. While her kids continued to scream just for the sake of screaming downstairs, I heard the woman of the family choosing rooms. "This will be Nicole's room. And that will be little Bobby's room..." and a territorial anger swelled within me. No! That is NOT Nicole's room! That is the room I use as a closet! And Bobby can't have that other room because it's next to Joe's room! "This," she said, poking her head into my large room, "could be a guest room...Oops, I'm sorry, hon," she said when she saw me. "I didn't realize you were in here." She smiled and went back down the hallway, but I was seething. This is MY room. Not a guest room!

The herd plodded back down the stairs and opened the door to the back yard. I thought that I would be allowed a few moments of silence as they all filed outside. But I was wrong. The parents yelled to one another across the pool. The kids chose the portion of the backyard just beneath my window to continue their screaming match. I cringed. I live for the time spent in my silent house. I love this place so much. It is truly my sanctuary. And the screeching outside was wrecking it. I hated them. I hated them all.

So the good mood of earlier in the day had vanished, giving way to a more worrisome attitude. What will I do if the house sells? I love this house. Where will I go? And so it was no surprise that I cured what ailed me by heading out to the Garden of Eden's Fourth Anniversary Celebration, to lose myself in a night of friends, blues music and vodka.

20 comments:

Casey said...

Sounds miserable.

Other people's kids can be *so* annoying.

God's gift to women (with really low standards) said...

I may not be up to date on the law, but I'm pretty sure it's ok to hit other people's kids. You can do it when the parents aren't looking, then when the parents confront you about it, just say, "Why the hell would I do that? Who are you going to believe? Me or a 6-year-old?"

Islandgirl said...

Kids are annoying. Can you imagine if you had to deal with that ALL day? Like you must have to be some sort of God to be a teacher. What gives? I don't even have the patience for 5 minutes of one kid! I feel sorry if I ever have children. Hah.

kate said...

Oh that sucks! I'd hate to have strangers tromping through my house, especially after a long day at work. Are they buying the house?

Julie said...

Oh that makes me sad. I value my space...my sacred home environment. It must be hard to think about giving that wonderful place up. What are you going to do?

NJ said...

Vodka does fix my mood too. It usually only takes a gimlet or two. :-)

Miss_Vicki said...

Six kids?? I'd shoot myself. Seriously. No frickin way.

I had to house/dog sit for a nice couple I know, and they were selling their house. So, half the time when I'd be on my way back there after work I'd see cars in the driveway and, since I was supposed to "get out" when they were showing it, I had to just drive around or find something to do. It sucked in a way, but it was just part of the job, and I understood that, still just a little inconvenient. Then there was an open house one Sunday (might I add WHILE FOOTBALL WAS ON GRRRRRRRRRRR) and I had to take the dog and get out for like 5 hours.... not fun.

Good luck in finding something new, I'm sorry to hear you have to leave.

Scoot said...

Move to milwaukee. Problem solved. :)

Popeye said...

Oh. Sorry you had to deal with the Brady Brunch. I like kids, I really do, but I'm happy when they leave.

jen said...

i have no patience for kids. this poses a problem when people ask me to baby-sit... and i do it

jen said...

i have no patience for kids. this poses a problem when people ask me to baby-sit... and i do it

The Zombieslayer said...

Sometimes I wish you can spank other people's kids. :(

I was listening to Bill Cosby not too long ago and he said that's one reason he grew up as strong as he did. If his parents were busy and he was making a ruckus, he could expect to get yelled at by other adults in the neighborhood. Not anymore. Nowadays, kids just run amuck and if you try to scold them, you'll probably get sued.

Heather said...

Yeah, this world has way too many kids that don't behave. The little darlings don't mean to be so annoying, and their parents don't do anything to control them, so we all have to live with it.

You've just inspired a blog post for me.

Paul said...

I said it before and I'll say it again: you are so "Sedarisest" in your story telling. You have the ability to make us laugh and cry at the same time.

Paul

Laurie said...

Aw, Paul...That's such a huge compliment! Thanks!

Yeah, the little rugrats were waaay too much to deal with after a long day at work. It's times like that when I take the batteries out of my biological clock. :)

The good news is, I probably won't see them in my house again while I'm living in it. The bad news is, they made an offer. I don't know if it'll be accepted, or what I'll do if it is. But I'll keep you posted. :(

Kristi said...

pokes her head in your room. Of course your in there! Where else would you be!!!
Jerks!
I'd be super pissed too. As a matter of fact I'm sure I would have made a scene that I wasn't able to park my own car in my own spot!
The house isn't sold yet!
Friggin noisy kids. i would have told them to keep them quiet. Regardless if it was a customer of yours or not. you don't have to be nice to these people. The only thing you owe them is no holes in the walls when you leave!

They owe you privacy in you own home!!!

Jason said...

I went through this quite a bit showing my house, although at least I knew when people were coming. Prospective buyers can be incredibly rude, screaming kids or no. Unless you can buy that house, it doesn't sound promising. :-( I was lucky enough many years ago to have my landlord offer me the chance to buy my first home. None of those hassles to deal with.

Paul said...

It'a a great big world filled with great big houses: someday you will have your own castle or little white house with a picket fence. Something tells me your days in Milford are numbered.

Paul

Charlie Mc said...

I love your stories.....the way you tell them always makes me feel like this syuff is happening to me...

Anonymous said...

You do tell stories well...

You might also enjoy this blog from another PA 20something -

http://lizlawson.blogspot.com/

Check it out and keep up the good writing !!!