Sunday, January 15, 2012

Tree Story House

We complained about losing thousands of trees when hurricane-force winds hit Pasadena November 30th, but we didn't lose every tree in town. In fact, most of them are still here. It's not that we exaggerated the loss. It's just that Pasadena had so many trees to begin with that although losing so many was painful, we still live in a blessed urban forest.

Boz and I passed this giant on our dog walk yesterday evening. The tree dwarfs its yard partner, making it look like a tiny tree house.

Sometimes when I'm walking--okay, always when I'm walking--I glance through gates into back yards and, if the curtains are open, I peer into windows. It's part nosiness, absolutely. But mostly it's like looking at the pictures while reading a fanciful storybook. I peek at a world I don't know. I imagine what it's like to live inside that story.

Boz doesn't fantasize. He's strictly a non-fiction dog. But I'm sure I'm not the only one who does this.

I couldn't see into this house. Like a treehouse, it's raised over the sidewalk on a yard of ferns, heightened above the everyday like fiction itself. But the golden light from the windows was enough.

17 comments:

Kalei's Best Friend said...

The size of the tree makes the house look more mysterious... Makes u wonder who lives there!. I love craftsman style homes...

LGreenWriter said...

Love the "strictly a non-fiction dog". However, a fiction series written from Boz's point of view could be really fun. : )

Bellis said...

I want to live there! It looks like a fairytale cottage, the kind Snow White would stumble upon in the forest. Wonder if they had a sleepless night worrying about the tree during Hurricane Rose?

I confess I love looking into windows as well. Have to time the walk right, around twilight, before the curtains are drawn. Some people take things a stage further and tour open houses posing as potential buyers, don't they? Would you have the nerve to do that?

Petrea Burchard said...

Probably just a neighbor, Kalei, but we have so much of this around it's like a storybook, so my imagination gets carried away.

LGW, I have this link for you: http://www.chetthedog.com/
I've been trying to get Boz to write his memoirs but he's a live-in-the-moment guy.

CafePasadena said...

That peek you took into the windows of that home studio yesterday was worth risk.

Petrea Burchard said...

Bellis, I do that, but I don't pose as a potential buyer. I just say I'm a neighbor and I'm interested in seeing the house. The realtors don't mind. They want you to spread the word.

Nice of you to say, Cafe. It was awfully nosy of me.

Bellis said...

Thanks for the explanation, I may start spending spare Sunday afternoons Open Housing again. In England, we have to show prospective housebuyers round ourselves, and I was a bit put out when neighbors made appointments to look round, just to be nosey. It wasn't nice to overhear their tactless comments, either. Much prefer the US system.

Katie said...

It would be cool to live here and be able to look out at that gorgeous big tree. (But yes, it would be a bit tough to sleep on a really windy night.) I haven't lookey-loo'd at an open house lately, but it's such a fun way to briefly step into a different life. I also (guiltily) like going to estate sales, which are decidedly less staged, but offer interesting glimpses into real lives.

Petrea Burchard said...

Ooh, Bellis, I'm not sure I'd like that. Although when we sold our first house John often managed to be there when buyers came through and he was a fabulous agent.

Katie, yes! Estate sales. I love them. I could spend way too much if I went often.

Ms M said...

Love the mood of your photo. When I'm walking at dusk, I also find myself looking into lit windows (from a distance, of course), curious as to what the house looks like inside. One night, I happened to glimpse a couple in an embrace, but it was not joyful or sexual. It looked as if the woman was sobbing into his shoulder. For the rest of the walk, I imagined various stories about what I had seen.

Petrea Burchard said...

Oh Ms. M, how sweet and sad. But yes, that's it! I don't want to know peoples' personal business. I want only a glimpse, to spark my imagination.

altadenahiker said...

"Boz doesn't fantasize. He's strictly a non-fiction dog." clap,clap,clap.

I really appreciate people who stage a scene in their picture window for me, the passerby. You know, like a couple of comfy chairs, a polished table with a stack of books, a craftsman lamp. Just like landscaping, it's a lovely gesture. It gives pleasure to people they probably don't know and will never meet.

Susan Campisi said...

I love imagining this house as a tree house, love the journey your imagination took in this post. That tree is beautiful but I'd be terrified in high winds. They must have been during the storm.

Petrea Burchard said...

Thanks, Hiker. Hmm. I need to work on our front window staging.

Susan, the possibility of a tree falling over never occurred to me before our 11/30 storm. It should be a rare occurrence. Our gardener told us people around here over-water their trees and I think he's right. Trees are supposed to dig down deep for water, and if they don't have to their roots become shallow and weak.

tourist spots in philippines said...

Wow, I'm sure this place is very relaxing and I love the green environment in your place.


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Petrea Burchard said...

Thank you, TSIP. The "urban forest" is one of the things that makes Pasadena a pretty place to live.

TheChieftess said...

Confessions of a fellow peeper!!! I've always looked into open windows when walking by...and I've always felt a bit guilty for invading their privacy...but then, it's so fascinating!!!