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Thursday, 9.8.05:  Do-It-Yourself Feng Shui

We're starting Day 4 of the kitchen renovation. I'm exhausted. And all I'm doing is "supervising"! Jim and I are taking turns, making sure one of us is here while the workers are here. The power in the circuits that serve both the kitchen and my studio have been on and off, so I've needed to shut down my computer, making me a fish out of water.

Most of their time so far has been spent re-wiring -- lots of fishing through the walls and testing which wires belong to which unlabeled circuit. Yesterday afternoon, they finally positioned 3 floor cabinets. Yay!!!

I should be energized by this project, but I'm walking around feeling drained. Maybe it's having my work routine disrupted. Maybe it's having to eavesdrop on the workers and not being able to join in on their problem-solving and their pounding. But it's probably living with everything from the kitchen is piled in boxes in the dining room/living room. We are cooking in the microwave crammed onto a box-piled table and washing our dishes in the powder room. It's like we've taken up residence in a Motel Six.

Do you believe in feng shui?

Feng shui is a traditional Chinese "ethnoscience" with complex rules and traditions about the geographic and directional placement of villages, buildings and furnishings in rooms. When I go to look up "feng shui" on the web, what I get sounds like so much astrology applied to physical surroundings. Not what I was thinking of.

Nowhere in my quick scan of the websites did I find the actual concept that's my idea of feng shui. Forget the astrological formulas. What I can buy is the idea of "energy flows" through a room or house. A room seems to fight with you -- you rearrange it and rearrange it -- then click! it's working with you instead of against you.

This is what's wrong with our temporary arrangement -- the energy pipes are all clogged. My spirit is cramped.

cramped "energy flows" in our temporary kitchen

I probably shouldn't be so sensitive -- like the princess & the pea. Nowadays you always have to compare your situation to New Orleans. No wonder you see people just sitting there staring into space -- what energies have not been diluted with sewage? What's left to re-arrange?

That was my moment of empathy.

I don't think there is much point in reworking the kitchen boxes for better energy flow. My spirit will learn to live with detours this season, just like my car learns to avoid construction detours.





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