By David Giffels
With the lyrics of a Replacements music working via his head ("Look me within the eye, then inform me that i am satisfied"), David Giffels—with his spouse and baby son in tow—combs the environs of Akron, Ohio, looking for the correct condominium for his burgeoning relations. the hunt ends on the entrance door of an attractive yet decaying Gilded Age mansion, the once-grand former place of abode of a rubber-industry government. It lacks practical plumbing and electrical energy, leaks rain like a sketch shack, and is infested with all demeanour of flora and fauna. yet for a tender father at a coming-of-age crossroads, the problem is exactly the attract. all of the approach house is Giffels's humorous, poignant, and confounding trip in the course of the nice event of restoring a crumbling apartment which will learning what the phrases "grown up" and "home" particularly suggest.
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Additional info for All the Way Home: Building a Family in a Falling-Down House
There was such a manner of leisure and conscious choice from the moment he awoke. Each morning after he shaved, he went downstairs in a crisp shirt and tie. While the rest of the house was still sleeping, he drank a glass of grapefruit juice and wrote a note to the family—instructions or observations for the day. Boys: Clean up the crab apples before raccoons overrun us. When we saw him later, he was building things, not always things that were needed, but things that appealed to him in a way that I didn’t yet understand.
We always celebrated it big. Lots of food. Lots of drinks. Five months’ pregnant, I had the perspective of the wife who wasn’t drinking. So I was able to watch David drink enough for the two of us. I was able to watch when his dad brought out a bottle of cognac and David, who doesn’t drink cognac regularly (or maybe even “ever”), drank it like water. On the drive home, David, weaving in the passenger seat, said he had one last little surprise to take care of for Christmas. Big secret, he said. I thought maybe he had some last-minute wrapping to do.
Oh, yeah? I thought. A ll t h e Wa y H o m e [ 29 The next day I drove back by and since the for sale sign was lying in the weeds, I pulled into the driveway apron to avoid the busy traffic. I stepped out of the car, got the number off the sign, and wrote it down. I looked through the trees again. There was no way that jerk was getting this house. It looked different than I remembered. It still gave me a thrill—all that huge, untended falling down-ness—but I also felt a distant tug of dread, neither clear nor present, just enough to wonder how long that piece of green corrugated fiberglass had been up there not keeping any water out.
All the Way Home: Building a Family in a Falling-Down House by David Giffels