Well, August started weird…sigh…
You see, there’s an online yard/garage sale site for my little town and I’ve managed to get a bunch of stuff without having to drive from garage sale to garage sale in the heat, wade through things that are sticky and questionable to find any type of useful object, and waste entire weekends.
It works like this – people post pics and prices on stuff they want to get rid of, and the first person to commit to buying gets it. The item is left on a front porch, and the money to pay for it is put under the front porch mat.
Usually, that’s how it works.
But not Friday, not for me it didn’t….of course not.
I saw the most adorable little music box thing with a kitty in overalls, batting a butterfly, on top. It was from a Beatrix Potter collection. I had no idea who the character was, not being a devotee of the writer.
Apparently, though, this character was very near and dear to the woman who decided to sell the kitsch to me.
In an e-mail I asked that she put it on her porch and I’d run by her house, slip the money under the mat, pick up the porcelain kitty and be on my way.
No, no..that wouldn’t do she replied, she must “put it in your loving hands…”
Ohhhhhhhhhhhkay….I double-checked to be certain we were discussing a porcelain doo-hickey and not a real kitty.
That should have been my first clue, but they don’t call me “Clueless Cleo” for nothing.
Actually, ‘they’ don’t call me that…but they should….sometimes…
So I agreed to go to her house and pick up the kitty.
When I got there, and knocked on the door, I was greeted by the nice Beatrix Potter fan and her two kitties. They were real, and so was she.
She led me to a back room, and after we entered she closed the door behind us.
I admit I got real nervous for a moment.
Nevermind that she was much older than me, I was trapped in a very cluttered little room with someone I had just met.
She took the porcelain music-box (did I mention it plays “Claire de Lune”?) kitty off a shelf, and stroking it she cooed, “There’s my pretty baby….here you go.” as she handed it to me.
“Take good care of Tom Kitty.” she said, smiling as I took it from her.
“Who?” I replied, wondering why she named her porcelain figurines a second before I realized this was a Beatrix Potter character.
Her face darkened…I mean really, kinda scary-looking, darkened.
“That’s his name.” she said, coldly.
I suddenly felt as though I were being accused of kidnapping a porcelain cat for nefarious purposes.
“Oh, oh of course!” I smiled, a little too brightly.
Her face relaxed as she returned my smile. Her eyes, though, showed her mistrust.
She opened the door and led me down the hallway again, chattering on about her newest rescue kitty, and other things. I wasn’t really paying attention as I just wanted to leave; the whole encounter having left me creeped out.
Since then I’ve noticed some other amazing pieces of artwork and antiques she listed for sale, but there’s no way I’m buying anything if it means going back to that house.
Not now. Not ever.