Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Then the Crosses moved, we moved and the boat came off its struts and moved with us. Now we knew that our father meant business, meant to finish this boat, and something stabilized in me. The boat had languished the last few years under the poplars, while my father and his Estonian friend looked grave and talked about something called a layoff, which I didn't understand but which made my stomach queasy. But by taking the boat with us, my father confirmed that he intended to finish it By God! (as he was fond of saying). My stomach relaxed.
Our new house had what my father called a carriage house. He tore out a horse stall in that carriage house and installed the boat in its place, so he could work on it through the winter. Now we all had our own rooms, the boat had a stable, and there were no weird neighbors next door listening to opera. My father began renovating the new house, and we learned how to tear off wallpaper, strip woodwork and use staple guns. My father thought he could renovate his dream house, build a boat and raise six children. We didn't think this was odd, and no one asked my mother. I guess that's why now I always do too much. My father set a blistering pace, and we all ran after him.