In 1785 while plowing, renowned poet and songwriter, Robert Burns, turned over a field mouse’s nest . Later, he wrote about the incident in a poem, To a Mouse, which contained the lines:
The best laid schemes o’ Mice an’ Men,
Gang aft agley,
An’ lea’e us nought but grief an’ pain,
For promis’d joy!
These along with Auld Lang Syne, which we sing each New Year’s Eve, are his most well-known lines today. The modern translation of one line reads as, “The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry”.
While not losing my home, the remodeling plans that started out with such hope, perhaps like that mouse had, are now “gang aft agley”. It couldn’t be called a complete disaster since most of it is redeemable, but the ideas were too big requiring too much demolition. That sends us back to the drawing board for changes to the plans. It would be depressing except that some other changes have occurred which make me happy that the interior work wasn’t started.
This past spring brought about huge damages to homes located in a wide circumference from the Knoxville area as well as other areas of Tennessee. I was so relieved to have missed all those tornadoes and bad storms. What I didn’t count on was what hail storms, and we had three here, can do to a roof and gutters. A neighbor’s suggestion that I get my roof checked out combined with the fact that the gutters weren’t working correctly brought the insurance adjuster out last week.
The final verdict is in and there is a new roof and gutters in my future. If you know anything about construction, you know that adding to the roof line is best done when re-roofing. In the drawn plans, the current deck is to be extended out another eight feet or so, covered and screened. So, thank goodness, the interior was never started. The deck, second on the list of major revamps, has moved into first place. I’m so glad.
The house in Jackson had a big screened porch where Emma and I spent many fine hours. It was a thinking place, a place to observe the humming birds and watch the flowers and plants grow. When family came and weather permitted, we would gather there to talk and laugh. Of all the things that house had, I miss that porch more than anything. It will be good to have that homey extended room again. This feels so right.