Out of the Woods

This morning was again a near perfect one due to the light rain we had last night and then the arrival of the cooling north wind. When we have days like this, I’m sure all the many would like to flash-freeze them in time and then re-activate them whenever our days are cold and gray.

One of my favorite Downtown people stopped by to tell me about this past weekend which happened to be a gathering of friends and relatives she’d not seen in a number of years. I had to laugh when she mentioned how several of those people have changed to the point of almost not recognizing them. I couldn’t help but tease her by saying, “Some people like you age with grace, while others look like they’ve been ridden hard and put away wet far too many times.” Her biggest surprise was the amount of weight and number of wrinkles that had been added since she’d last seen them. Since she physically works, I reminded her that her aging is less noticeable because she keeps her muscles toned and burns far more calories in a day than her sedentary counterparts. I guess I made her day when realizing I’d paid her a great compliment about her looks.

A morning appointment was to meet buyers at a home I sold last week so they could do some measuring for floor coverings, as well as getting another good look at the job they have ahead of them with the inside and outside of their soon to be new home. Once again, I had to point out all the bad growth that needed to be taken out, and what trees I’d keep, and the ones I’d cut down. It seems all the more people haven’t a clue about trees and shrubs, and today was just another confirmation. Of all the “junk” trees that were growing on the property, there were maybe two, and no more than three that I’d leave, and the rest trashed. I’m not sure if they were paying much attention, so when I drive past their home in a year and still see those junk trees, I’ll know I wasted my breath.

It looks like I’m going to be having some late appointments this week, and I guess we have to do what’s necessary to keep buyers and sellers happy. My late one tomorrow is at an acreage that just came on the market, and as chance would have it, I had it listed about 21 years ago, and you can be sure I’ll never ever forget the wife of that seller.

Not knowing how temperamental she was, I got broadsided by her while on the phone when announcing the buyer was requesting she and her husband return a light fixture they so freely removed before they moved, along with a demand they mow the grass which had grown about a foot tall.

It was about this time of year and late in the afternoon when I called, and to this day I’m in dis-belief she screamed at me over the phone so loud that I worried she damaged my hearing. She let out screams liken to someone being brutally tortured to the point I nearly hung up because she wouldn’t calm down. By that time, she had her husband in an uproar, so I had to listen to his off-the-wall ranting about being “victims” of the buyer at the last hour. We did finally get it resolved, but you can bet, after the closing, I distanced myself as far as possible from the both of them.

It came as no surprise when hearing some years later they divorced. I never worked with either of them again until several years after their divorce, the husband came to me asking for my help in finding him a new home. After several showings, he mentioned how difficult his life was while married to her, which left to image what his life must’ve been like when married to a woman with such a volatile temper. In a round-about sort of way, he did apologize for the way he acted when I called that late afternoon asking for a light fixture to be returned and their dooryard mowed.

One of my late afternoon appointments was with a very kind gentleman who is thinking about listing his home. I’d not seen him for well over a year, so after talking about his home and possible future housing options, we visited about work and family. If there’s anyone worthy of listening to a life story, he’s the one.

Believe it or not, he was born and raised in a small town far and up in the northern reaches of Alaska. Oh, the stories he can tell about the weather, the animals, the forests, the hunting trips, and fishing expeditions. Of course the subject of moose hunting came up along with his vivid descriptions of what it took to bring one down, and then the bigger job of getting such a large carcass boned and cut up for the long haul out of the woods and back to town. I can’t imagine three people carrying 800 pounds of pure meat for a mile or more. Yes, he could be a guest speaker at any nature event, and likely captivate all the many for hours.

Tonight’s one-liner is: Whenever they burn books, they will also in the end, burn human beings.

Joe Chodur

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