So you know how I said our new place reminded us so much of our current home 9 years ago? And then I mentioned how we hadn't opened a cupboard or done any close examination before putting in an offer?
Yup, the reality of all that bit us in the bums yesterday.
Laid bare before us she revealed herself; wrinkles, liver spots, stretch-marks, scars, unsightly secrets of her long and active life.
A house without furniture is not a home, can't conceal its true self behind the soft furnishings and knick-knacks of the people who live there. An empty house is just a house, and a house whose most recent occupant has been a little old lady with failing eye-sight and flagging energy is a house which requires a lot of TLC.
In one of the winter's worst storms she maintained her dignity though, she showed us how she buffered herself against the slamming North Wester, held us warm as we watched the lake splash hard against its banks, throwing suds of foam up onto the lawn. She revealed unknown nooks and crannies, surprises both pleasant and ... not so pleasant.
She dared us to wallow in buyer's regret, or see her for all that she is, beneath her scarred exterior.
Between yesterday and our return visit today, in the sunshine, reality bit a little harder and the fact that this house is ours, ours to heal and paint and renovate, ours to love and live and grow in has sunk in for us all. And made us so happy.
We went back today and, as is our wont, we ripped out part of the kitchen, pulled up a carpet, walked through the place in surgical gloves and threw away ancient woolly toilet seat covers (shudder) and random left-behind crap.
She may still be empty until the end of the week, is not yet filled with our things, but already she's started to feel like home. Our house on the lake.