Trina Machacek: It’s always sunny somewhere
The first time I stepped into my house my life changed. For the good, the change was for the good. The house I live in was delivered. It is not a trailer it is a house. Stick built in Idaho yes, but it has a wood frame and is considered what is commonly known as a modular house. As soon as I stepped into this house it became a home. No question in my pea brain that making it a home was my responsibility. I am a very responsible person you know. HAHA
The most vivid memory of that first day as the workers rolled the two halves together and started building the garage and hooking up all the things that we had been working on to be ready for that day is this. That evening the power was on and I sat on the living room floor on new carpet with the new carpet smell drifting into my nose. I could see all the way down the hallway into the back bedroom clear to the back wall. It seemed like a million miles of carpeting was glimmering and all standing up happy and clean. As clearly as I sit here today I can hear me telling my other half, “I need a bigger vacuum cleaner!” And then, poof we were home owners. Well us and the bank of course. But. Yes a carpet burned “but.” But the bank wasn’t expected to make those payments every month for the next umpteen years.
We made those payments and made those payments and made payments for trucks and cars and motorcycles, vacations and equipment and inventory for a few business’ and for all things that we all want NOW but have to buy on time.
Then one day, one fine spring day we made the last payment on that house that was delivered over a quarter of a century earlier. What a feat it was. We did burn the mortgage papers. Well copies because as grown ups we knew you never destroy contracts. Ever.
But we did have a mortgage burning party. And the sun was shining.
Now here’s where I am going with all that chitty chatty. We thought those first few months after we were done paying off the house that we would be rolling in dough when we stopped making those payments. I mean it’s really like you get a huge pay raise when you stop making payments right? It’s the same feeling I got when I quit smoking. Look at the money I would safe I thought. And that was when cigarettes were less than two bucks a pack. Now! Wow quitting smoking now when the little devil sticks are priced in some places ten bucks a pack? Well a quick cha-ching tells me that a pack or more a day could be up to — four plus six — carry the nine — nearly the same amount as we were paying in house payments!
Soon we would be rolling in green. The sun would shine and we could breathe a sigh of relieve the 15th of ever month. Sure. Sure. That lasted about two maybe three days. How does that happen? Every time we paid off a note I thought for sure I would be able to keep making that payment to myself. You know. Put it away in a sock. Save for a rainy day when the sun stopped shining because of some unforeseen circumstance.
Then a month goes by and you think — next month for sure. I relate it to the sign you see occasionally in a bar that reads, Free Beer — Tomorrow. And then tomorrow becomes today and then tomorrow is yesterday. AARRGGHH. That actually is OK. It is a way to move forward. Like pain. It is terrible and you wish it would stop. Then it stops and soon you forget just how hard or miserable it was to go through. Yes, that’s what payments are like!
As soon as a payment book gives up its last coupon and you are unchained the sun comes out. Now as I drive past parking lots full of cars, older ones and shiny new ones I sometimes think—WOW! I wonder how many payment books are sitting in that lot. I hope, now I know I am tempting the fates here. I hope I never have another payment book with my name on it. Ever.
I want the sun to be shining on me from now on. Fat chance as I am still alive and wanting new and shiny and glittery. Come on I’m a girl after all.
Trina lives in Eureka. Her book, They Call Me Weener is available on Amazon.com. Or get a signed copy by e-mailing her at email@example.com