Be Our Guest

pumpkin 0519As part of our House Math, we are (voluntarily) losing one bedroom when we shift locations. [House Math, addressed many moons ago, is the perplexion (shouldn’t that be a word?) whereby we go from 1,600 square feet to slightly more than 1,700 and can’t fit anything we own.]

Currently, we live in a house with four bedrooms, all of them full. One is filled with a Norfolk pine tree. I gave it to Lynn 17-ish years ago, when it was barely more than a seedling, and if we don’t move soon, it’s going to smack into the eight-foot ceiling. It’s at least five feet across. Everyone, including sometimes Lynn, wants it to find a new home, except me. Several people have suggested putting it outside, but Norfolk pines are a sub-tropical species. Now, Gunnison is, in fact, sub-tropical (sub-sub-sub-tropical, to be technical), but let’s review the part where it is snowing once again as I type this.

Our Some Day house —

[Lynn and Dusty’s employee Sam spent yesterday afternoon together, bonding over precision painting projects and Sam’s music collection, and this young man raised a rather high eyebrow when Lynn told him Dusty had projected late June as a move-in target. Some Day we will be there. Maybe not late June.]

— will only have three bedrooms, none of them any more imposing than the rooms in this house. In fact, the first question everyone asks when touring our new house is: Which is the master bedroom? Answer: there isn’t really one.

Two of them are roughly the same dimensions, 12 x 14, which is not particularly a masterful size. If this were an episode of House Hunters, the buyers would walk in and say, “Oh, this is really small.” And maybe at some point buyers will say that — maybe they’re saying that about our current house, because that’s the size of the largest bedroom in this house — about our new house, but we are hoping to be in there for a long time, so what does it matter.

The third new bedroom is just slightly smaller, and we are calling it The Guest Room. But I have no idea how many guests to expect, or how much floor space to devote to the cause.

Currently, no one visits us. And if they did, we don’t have anywhere to put them, despite having four bedrooms. We have a futon, but it’s in the same room as the Norfolk pine, with no room to fold down. But no one asks to use it, so it doesn’t matter.

We have many Gunnison friends who complain about how much company they have to entertain every summer, but it just hasn’t been an issue for us. Lynn’s family lives in Wisconsin, and we keep inviting them, but often, after driving halfway across the country, they stay an hour or two and move on. Nephew Elliot once came for a week or more (he stayed on the futon, back before the pine took over), but that was about it.

The Vision we have for our new house, however, seems for whatever reason to feature far more entertaining than we currently do. Whether the vision matches the reality is an entirely different thing.

[I am going to interrupt myself here. Days like this, as I’m looking out the back at the smoke coming from neighbor Eric’s chimney, and out front at the poor little new leaves shivering as they are bandied about by the wind, remind me of Wayne, formerly the proprietor of White Buffalo Farm out of Paonia. Wayne vended for many years at the farmers’ market, and when I was the market treasurer, he had a variety of complaints I was unable to solve, including that the road was too slanted. Most memorably, on one absolutely wretched day, he informed me that the weather was “downright inhospitable.”  That’s this morning: downright inhospitable. And I can’t do any more about it today than I could back then.]

With our shrinking expanded floor space, we aren’t sure how much to give over to guests who may never materialize. To that end, we thought a murphy bed (should that be capitalized?) made sense. We even have a spare queen mattress, because as Lynn learned the hard way, when you shop for a mattress on-line (who does that?) rather than locally, no one comes with a moving truck to haul your old mattress away.

But it might make a clunky murphy bed, because it’s an extra-thick mattress with a pillow-top. Lynn suggested an air mattress would be sufficient, and then I remembered I have the leavings of a Sleep Number bed, which is really just an expensive set-up for air mattresses. In both instances, I am trying to utilize that same wall for bookshelves.

Lynn found a really cool murphy bed set-up on offer from a company that I think originates in Colorado. The wall on either side of the bed consists of bookshelves, while the underside of the upright bed also has bookshelves. The bed shelves then slide over the wall shelves when you want to pull the bed down.

That sounded great, and well worth the expense, until one starts doing that darn math again. A queen bed is five feet wide, meaning that each half of the shelves would have to slide two and a half feet to either side. And if one does not have masterfully-sized bedrooms, one’s guest room does not come with 10 feet of wall space.

Then I thought, and this gets complicated, that maybe a hollow bed frame could just fit among the bookshelves, so the shelves would stay put and a rectangle would drop down out of them. Either that rests directly on the floor and gets filled with Sleep Number air mattresses, or we’d have to store a bottom plate somewhere else. And have some screw-on legs available, and . . . it gets complicated.

Now, I don’t know exactly what we do with the floor space if we have a murphy bed, because whatever goes in the middle of the room would need to move in the event of a guest or two.

I can see potential for guests. Tia, who I think was overwhelmed with the whirlwind of getting a new job right at the onset of budget presentation, plus a previously-scheduled trip to Scotland (I believe she’s there now), hasn’t really announced a plan for her year of commuter-living in Gunnison. I kind of assumed she might want to spend her week-a-month with us, in the room Lynn is referring to as “The Pumpkin Room.” (Copper Pot orange and Apollo gray on the walls; Pine Marmoleum on the floor. But I don’t think the Norfolk pine will reside on the Pine.)

Salsa sibling Wendy said she might come this way this summer. My parents might show up. Maybe we could entice one or more of Lynn’s relatives to at least stay one night on their journey to Real Colorado (we don’t have the allure of Rocky Mountain National Park, apparently). Who knows?

All I can tell you for sure is — and I am basing this on the solid evidentiary science of our current existence — if no one visits early, we will find more and more non-visitor uses for our “guest room,” and should you ever decide to visit, you will find yourself in the guest cabin down the road instead.


One thought on “Be Our Guest

  1. Ummm… hello? I’ve guested at your old house and plan to guest at your new house. Don’t skimp on the bed!


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