Wednesday night. October’s moon is on full and bright behind scattered low clouds tonight. And the man in the moon, like from behind wispy curtains, sneaks a peek down here now and then to see what we’re up to. My little dog Bobby and me, we were caught porch-sitting in the dark at our new cabin we call the Coda Home. We were sitting out there with the tree frogs and cicadas laying down a little background nightsound chorus, reflecting on these last twenty-eight days, one full moon to another.
Seeing as how I like full moons and the number 9, Monday night, September 20, the 9th full moon of the year, was the perfect night to move out of the Rough Draft Cabin where we’ve been for four years. A good night to stop something and start something else.
Let me borrow this line of thought:
Within the Jewish mystical teachings of the Kabbalah, their ciphers and the Ten Sefirots, a 9 is the last number (10 restarts the count). And the principal attribute of the 9 is connection. Like, say, the way an ending is absolutely connected to a beginning—the alpha and omega foundation of reality
And, according to Kabbalists, each number is assigned some planetary influence. Yep, the ruling heavenly body for the 9th sefirot is the moon.
So, though the cabin was unfinished, Bobby and I decided that mystical night was the right night to make special the move up the hill from the flowing creek called Waterhole Branch, out of the Rough Draft Cabin to higher ground, into the Coda Home. We slept on the floor that first night. And we loved it. Slept like tired children.
And have been sleeping here every night since.
And doing a lot of work on the place.
Joe Formichella and Suzanne Hudson own the property on which the Coda Home cabin sits, and Joe won an in-house contest for the privilege of naming rights back when they bought it and had it moved here a year ago. And though coda is the term for a concluding passage in a piece of music, it’s also fair, according to the Oxford English Dictionary to use the word like this: “His new novel is a kind of coda to his previous books.” I asked Joe if he was suggesting that moving into the cabin was the end of the chapter for an older novelist like me. He only lifted an eyebrow in that way Joe does, and easily translates, Well, I mean, have you checked your expiration date lately?
Matter of fact, I have.
I said in the last post to this webpage I have decided I will stay on this plane of existence until my birthday in the year 2036. But the Coda Home, like the number 9 I’ve affixed to the wall beside the front door, is as much a beginning as it is an ending.
Because one of the main reasons for giving up the Rough Draft Cabin was to move closer to the concrete slab where Wandalene, my 50-year old Airstream, will be parked within the next few days and where she will take up about a year and sixteen days of my time for a complete remodeling. And the Coda Home will put me within just twenty-nine steps of Wandalene. And the same distance back to the cabin for another cup of coffee or a peanut butter sandwich or some hummus and chips and my easy chair if I want to, say, take a little break from my labors of love.
I’ll give the old gal a makeover into a tiny home. Her days as a travel trailer have rolled to a stop. To make the point, her rear bumper is removed and will not be put back. Instead, there will be a custom welded planter box that drains well and is filled with good loamy soil and flowers in bloom. Maybe a pepper plant. And if we do roll down the road to another living spot—not some campsite—I shall fire up a pair of moveable taillights mounted to tomato stakes.
I’ve already taken the running lights off the coach. Neither the Rough Draft Cabin nor the Coda Home have running lights and turn signals. Neither will Wandalene. Again, if the highway should call, I’ll get an escort for such automotive amenities.
But I’m not worried about those details. It’s all good. And the Mystical Universe has sent me a couple of 9-style affirmations. I nodded and smiled when I checked the ID plate and saw that her date of manufacture in 1976 was in the 9th month. And then, as I was taking off the Georgia license plate, I noticed that the tag number had a root of 9.
When I’m told that the signs I see are of my own making, I agree. And yet I pause and I’m grateful. And not at all sure how to reconcile one and the other.
Randy Moberg with his artist’s eyes told me he looks at Wandalene’s form and sees a spaceship. I can squint and go snake-eyes like Butch Cassidy (or was it Sundance?) and also see her cosmic qualities.
And a spaceship that can take me to the moon.
But only if I grow old enough to turn my mind around and become again like a little child, only then will my passport let me zoom into that heavenly kingdom of imagination.