restoring what’s been lost

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I don’t usually go in for reproductions..but for books with  historical adverts or interesting formatting i make an exception. For this book, i will only be usig the title page and the 1 advert page…the rest is just text so i will create a new transcription. Typesetting a new interior allows me to add indexing and produce a clean easily readable text. This little sailors memoir has a lot of interior staining which i COULD clean up one letter at a time…turns out all my practice restoring old photographs has rolled into a talent for restoring actual book pages as if they were photographs. But there just isn’t any reason to use the original pages….the ink is faded and there’s no visual interest. The title page/cover and the back advert had their own problems…there were tears in the original, and bits of ornament missing. So, with various amounts of success i have cut and pasted and cleaned what was left on the page until i think it looks fairly good; though there is still a lot of dirty between the lines on the advert. That will take a bit more cleaning. When these pages get inserted into my new volume, they will actually end up looking better than they do here. At least i think they do.

I miss Greenfield already…i spent four months studying it, and thinking about it and working with the books i would be publishing…I would still prefer it to the towns i am looking at in Maine…cept i wish it ws in Maine. I have pretty much committed myself to Maine now… it has tapped in to a lot of feelings and thoughts that i had packed into a box and put in the back of the closet in the back of my brain. When i worked in Boston all those years, driving up the coast of Maine was my treat…it was what kept me sane for a great many years. The idea of moving there kept me going through the bad marriage years, and even after…for the ten years after that while i struggled with a sputtering business, everything was done with the promise of one day moving to Maine. I can’t remember exactly WHEN that dream was packed away. I think after years of working at projects that failed and unsatisfying jobs, being laid off time and time again.. i just assumed i would die in place. And that pulling my mired feet out of the muck here was just too much effort. I am afraid to embrace this dream entirely… as with anything, i keep expecting something to swim up and bite me in the ass. “NO! you can’t actually HAVE what you want..it must be outside of your reach always!”

Perhaps in my head I have the idea that moving to Maine will be like going on a permanent vacation…and indeed i’d like to think of it that way. Only having to do things that make me happy. NOT having to stress that at any moment, someone’s going to turn off my utilities, or make a demand on me that makes the quality of my tiny little life spiral any lower than it is now.

Over the years I have reduced my life to the bare minimums..i don’t travel, i don’t have much call to go out and drink and eat excessively…my idea of a night out is buying a used dvd and a take out dinner. I CAN see myself spending more money on Gasoline that i have had before…but if i combine that with shooting images i can sell and restocking point of sale locations, then i can write that amount off. What i will have to worry about is cobbling together an income that will REPLACE what i will spend out of my nest egg. After buying the things i need to buy, unless i have a serious fixxerupper house that will suck me dry, i don’t actually SPEND that much money on myself. I live on about 12K a year..i think i can swing that.

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I THINK i can make enough money without relying on an employer… At least that’s what I am betting on. After the third or fourth broken promise of gainful employment, i have just stopped trusting other people. All my editing jobs have dried up, since the folks i was doing it for no longer have their employers paying them. I have rolled all my projects back to just the ones that I control. Making my monthly nut must not depend on other people…customers not withstanding. The repair products sell well seasonally…sales take a huge dip in summer and over the winter holidays… I am hoping that the local histories will fill in the gaps and sell mostly in the summer and over the holidays. IF i find something else to fill in the gaps, like a greenhouse, or perhaps growing mushrooms in the basement…or growing other things which are legal in Maine but not everywhere, then that’s all good. I could even go back to selling restored bicycles, whatever i have the time for.

OK, yes i am hearing that damn voice in my head, saying ‘you aren’t going to do any of that you lazy bastard’ – Well i won’t have much choice…for the 1st time in my life i will be debt free and won’t have to worry about an income for at least a year. WHY WON’T I get these things accomplished? Am I wrong in thinking that if i remove the things that make me depressed, I won’t be depressed? I went a many years between fits of depression…as long as the bills were paid and the business was doing well.. i nearly never got lost up inside my own head. I distinctly remember enjoying my life a lot more, before other people started mucking with it. I just have to replace this constant state of dread with things that bring me joy. And if something doesn’t, it better have a damn good reason.

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