How's that for a headline? If that doesn't get your SEO gyroscopes a-spinning, please reach down to your chest and investigate whether you are dead. Or perhaps you're just not reacting to it as emotionally as I do, because you've never done time in the kitty hoosegow.
First, the backstory: Moxie and I and the boys have been living with her parents for about a week. (Hel-LO, wacky sitcom! I'd like to be played by Will "Kiss of Death" Arnett after his umpteenth consecutive show is canceled.)
Second, the back-backstory: Moxie brought her cats out here last month, and they don't get along well with her parents' cat, who has a Hepburnesque distate for intruders and guff. So the intruders have been quarantined in the basement for several weeks and have basically reached the "Get busy living, or get busy dying" stage of their incarceration. And I got to sleep with them, in a basement that through some miracle of physics is actually ten degrees hotter than the rest of the house.
All this might sound pretty dire, but--at the risk of boring everyone's pants off--it's working out a lot better than it could have. This is largely due to Grandma Jellyspoon, whose arms were the first to reach for me when the boys and I pulled into her driveway. And who, when I told her that the cats spent the nights shivving each other and meowing "AT-TI-CA!", paroled me to the couch.
For the past several days I've been scampering around A2 looking for housing, and I'd like to let the word go forth from this time and place that I am an idiot. Coming from the Big, Bad Apple, I thought finding a place here would be a snap. Instead, I've met with a steady flow of 1) shrugs, 2) head-shakes, and 3) crap. There was also the perfect house, which slipped through my fingers when a buyer emerged at the last second.
People aren't leaving, because they know what I'm learning: Ann Arbor is pretty great. The kids are going to camp next week, Robert has volunteered (!) to run a 5K in Chicago in October, and they spent the other morning singing with Grandma and making mint jelly from scratch. This is what sustains me (as did all your comments and e-mails, and BlogHer, which could not have been better-timed), and helps convince me that this gamble could pay off.