Monday, June 23, 2008

The blessing of a new apartment

A post title with a double meaning! :)

I'm more or less moved in to our new place in Lakewood, and my muscles feel the effect of two days of hauling stuff up to the second story apartment. It's a pretty nice-looking two-bedroom with very roomy closets and two large balconies. There's lovely landscaping in the complex, two pools, and attentive and friendly staff in the rental office. I'm happy.

My new roommate is Mery, she who invited Diep and me to a weekend at Corpus Christi Monastery. She comes with a dowry of a fridge, plenty of dishes, a kitchen table and chairs, and various other items I won't have to buy for myself. Even better, she shares my preference for an uncluttered apartment and (relatively) simple lifestyle. After moving all our stuff in we've still got a fair bit of empty closet space. Furthermore, our decently large living room contains exactly one lamp and one rocking chair, and I might move the chair back to my room. We're minimalists. :) Okay, I may cave and buy a sofa and coffee table, if only so we can be hospitable to guests. We have no TV. Who needs it when EWTN can be streamed via Internet? :) It'll be a problem if we want to have friends over for Jane Austen DVDs-- is there such a thing as a big flat screen that does nothing but hook up to a DVD player?

Most of the moving was done on Saturday, and on Sunday we had ten guests over for the apartment blessing. It was a scramble to get the place presentable by that time (actually the final touch of picture-hanging took place after the guests had arrived), but we preferred to have our home blessed right away. Our friends brought extra chairs and lots and lots of good food. We had planned to feed them all dinner ourselves, especially by way of thanking the ones who helped with the move and even hauled the refrigerator up the stairs. But instead we had a feast and now Mery and I figure we'll eat free for a week on the leftovers. :)

We're only two blocks from St. Peter Chanel. :) :) :) One of the priests rode his bike over, wearing a cassock and hoping the sash wouldn't get caught in the chain. Seriously, I know such cool priests! Everyone brought their breviaries and we had Vespers first (that's Evening Prayer) and then Father prayed a blessing in English, followed by one in Latin (much to our delight), and sprinkled all the rooms with holy water. My room was as neat for the occasion as it will ever be. I haven't got a desk or dresser yet, and all the computer stuff is staying at my old place until I get Internet up.

After the blessing we chowed down, talked and talked, prayed Compline and talked some more. To my delight folks stayed pretty late, the last guests cleaning up our kitchen before they departed. That has to be the easiest party I've ever hosted; other people did all the work. I was thinking-- not for the first time!-- of how glad I am to know so many loving and fanatical Catholics who were willing to pop over on short notice and help to bless our place. Thank you, dear Lord, for all of them. :)

Next Saturday my cousin Greg is going to get married on top of Glacier Point in Yosemite, with a reception at the Ahwahnee Hotel. I'm leaving with my parents tomorrow to spend a few days there beforehand. I hadn't planned on leaving before Friday, since there's so, so much to do here-- getting the apartment set up, some other stuff I want to sort out, and eventually, you know, looking for an actual job-- but it's been some years since I've gone to Yosemite, and it's about my favorite place on earth, and life is short. Who knows if I will ever have an opportunity to go to Yosemite with family again? So, having moved everything, I'm now going to pack some of it back up and drop my life for a few days. Some hiking, some reading, some swimming in the pool with views of Yosemite Falls, some gourmet dining... I'm going to miss daily Mass, though, but apparently there's a 12-family parish called "Our Lady of the Snows" right in Yosemite Valley that at least has Mass on Sundays. Anyway, I love you all and I'll blog you later!


Mary Rose said...

Your apartment sounds wonderful. Congratulations!

I don't know whether to hug you or blame you for telling me about EWTN being available as a streaming video. Holy cannoli! I bemoaned the fact I didn't have cable to my dad, who does and watches EWTN all the time. I've finally seen Archbishop Fulton Sheen (love him!), Mother Angelica, Johnnette, and so many more great Catholic teachers.

Somehow, I have to squeeze the rest of my life in there...

Hope your trip went well and looking forward to seeing you online again!

Rachel said...

Haha! I'm so glad I'm not the only one who's been sucked into the EWTN online thing! Abp. Sheen really is great. I also like The Journey Home.