We are making progress on the house. Eric began with hours and hours late in the evening before we left for Ecuador, but since we returned, he has been less focused. Part of my lack of enthusiasm was simply an expression of my ambivalence. I did not want to sell, and am still uncertain about selling, but since our return, I have been pushing through piles and piles of clothes and books. I had not entered into my expansive walk-in closet for years; I was horrified to find a mouse running across the top of the hanging clothes one day when looking for Halloween attire. That was it! I refused to use the closet, but did pile up unused papers and clothing and whatever else I did not want to look at. The closet filled up with debris, and I am learning that the mice continued to make their homes amongst the papers and rejected clothing. There must have been some sustenance for them as well, else they would not have made themselves comfortable in my space. Whenever I opened the door to the closet I could smell the presence of the mice, so I refused to wear any clothes or shoes that might otherwise have worked for me.
I am disgusted by what I find, but am also delighted to see that items I thought I had lost and continue to value are presenting themselves. I am washing everything with bleach, and packing all that I do not give away. Last week I had a call from American Veterans, who picked up three large plastic bags of clothing, which was convenient. I am hoping that I will find some long lost and forgotten treasures that I gave up on finding years ago.
I am choosing to keep a very small selection of clothing for my time in Ecuador. The weather in Quito is spring-like all year, with some rain and wind, but relatively mild and comfortable. I will not be working formally so suits and elegant clothing is unnecessary. Ordinarily I do not dress casually. The new me in Ecuador will be T-shirts and jeans. I have never been a T-shirt and jeans person, so I will be transformed on the outside. I have decided that there is very little clothing that I will actually need. Eric wears jeans and a shirt daily, and is comfortable and unselfconsicous. I wonder if this new me will feel like me.