Congratulations on purchasing the home I grew up in, the only home of my childhood, the one with the Ross Murray commemorative plaque out front, assuming my parents have followed my instructions. I thought I might get to Nova Scotia to help with the move, but I recently had surgery, and even light shoveling causes significant discomfort. Who knew the groin did so much of the heavy lifting! Who knew I’d have such a great excuse not to shovel!
Anyway, now that I’ve got you picturing my groin, I’d like to take a minute to point out some other special places, namely those things you might not have noticed around Ross Murray’s house. Don’t worry: people will stop referring to it as Ross Murray’s house in a generation or two.
First of all, you’ll have no doubt seen the shrubs lining the walkway up to the house. These are picky bushes. Their botanical name is Scratchyitchia Ouchedendra. Buy you can just call them picky bushes. Whatever you do, don’t let anyone push you into the picky bushes. And make sure you trim during shorts season. The bush, I mean. The picky bush! You know what? Just use the back door.
The front porch is a good place for sitting and looking cool. In the summertime, you might want to drag a stereo speaker to the door so that the neighbours can not only see how cool you are but hear how cool you are. Might I suggest a little Bob Seger?
Right inside and to the left are the stairs. There’s a wooden banister that runs about three-quarters up. You can slide down the banister, although I hope you’re under three feet tall, otherwise this may be less fun for you than I’m implying.
This also makes for adorable photos of your children peeking over the banister in chronological order. This is just as adorable when your children are between 50 and 60, although there is less peeking and more creaking.
To the right is the living room. This is a good spot for practicing piano or violin lessons given by your father. (Maybe not your father but a father; see if you can find a father. Totally worth it.) If you have a poodle, she may howl at the violin in either agony or ecstasy (it’s hard to tell with poodles), but this is known as “ambience” or “the weirdest violin lessons ever.”
Between the living room and the dining room is a half wall topped by a planter containing a grape ivy that has been there for 55 years. I recommend you alert all the scientists because HOW IS THAT THING STILL ALIVE!!!
Undoubtedly you’ve already been sold on the highlight of the kitchen: the counter with the built-in flour bins! How cool are they? And not just for holding flour. You can store marshmallows in there. Why marshmallows? Because that’s where the poodle knows they’re stored, that’s why. What a silly question.
Upstairs, you’ll find a furnace grate in the middle of the hallway. This is a perfect spot to stand on chilly mornings while waiting for siblings to get out of the one bathroom for six people, or to just sit there reading a book and hogging all the heat. Also, furnace heat up the pyjama pant leg: intriguing.
By planting your feet and hands against the facing walls of the hallway, you can scale your way up to the ceiling. Again, I hope you are under three feet to maximize your enjoyment.
Bedroom, bedroom, bedroom… (Oh, in that bedroom, you can climb onto the front porch roof to achieve – ahem! – “next-level” coolness.)
Now, here we have my bedroom. It belonged to my brother and me at first but really it’s mine. He can just get over it. With the lighting, the intimate space and its overall remoteness, this is a great room for making out. In theory.
Also, I’m reminded now that I had a poster on the ceiling above my bed, as fantasizing pubescent boys are wont to do. Man… That Star Wars was quite the movie!
Finally, the bathroom, where I highly recommend studying for exams in the tub. No water. Just lying in the bathtub. Trust me, it works.
That’s about it. I know you’re going to love the house and discover so many things yourself. My parents made a wonderful home here, and I’m sure you will too. There’s a myth in my family that I don’t like change. Not so. Moving to a smaller place, that’s a good change for my parents. Just don’t change that plaque on the front lawn, okay?