I didn’t buy this on a whim. I’ve seen it in the front window of that antique shop for weeks at this point. Every time I would walk on by it would be there, as if waiting for me. I kept on telling myself that I wouldn’t take it this time, maybe next time if it was still there. Every time I saw it, a project would begin to slowly take shape in my mind until today. Today I saw that project clearly and I couldn’t leave it there. It was big and clunky, a lot heavier than I had expected it to be. It might need a bit of polishing and love to get it to look really good again but I think it was more than worth it.
“You know we can’t really have any birds because of the cats, right?” Quentin, on the other hand, doesn’t seem to think so. I am well aware that we have two Bengal cats that love to chase everything and hunt all they can. It’s one of those things that went through my mind when I would walk by the beauty every time.
I have to roll my eyes at him as I finish setting up the antique cage on my desk where I had cleared a space just before going. My mind had been made when I stepped out that door. “I know we can’t have birds and I didn’t buy it for the ‘bird’ part of it, I bought it because it’s an old but still absolutely beautiful bit of art. The way it’s made and set up. I want to create something about it, if nothing more than to hang it up with some candles set up in there.”
He looks it over for a long moment and I almost believe he’ll tell me to drop it back outside but he eventually smiles and kisses my cheek, I sag a little. “I guess it could look nice with a few candles in it, but it is pretty rusty right now so it’s hard to imagine much of anything. I’m sorry of I made it sound like I didn’t want it in the house.”
All is forgiven, with him it’s always forgiven, or just about to an extent. I shrug and chuckle softly. “It’s old, it’ll need a lot of work but it will keep me busy on this for a few days to a week at most. Since we’re done with the present Alexis wanted for Eoghan. He should be by soon to get it. I’m thinking this cage, once it’s all prettied up again, it could be a welcome into your new home sort of gift for them when they can move into the warehouse. I know it’s a long time off but I think it would be nice.”
Again he looks at the cage and the smile is easier to come to his lips this time. I think those might have been the magic words. Maybe he was going to accept the cage grudgingly just for me sake but what he says next stuns me more than anything else. “That might not be a bad idea. That means you’ll have to find another one to restore so we can keep it here, though.”
I spend the better part of that week in my studio though I’ve set myself up in a mock cloth prison. I’ve hung up bits of old bed sheets around a certain area of the studio so I could work on sanding and airbrushing this cage back to beauty again without having old dust everywhere. It would have been a pain to fix up.
I had to also buy a mask else I know that by now I would have suffocated to hell and back. This created so much more dust than I had expected. It’s a good learning experience though. Now I know how to better prepare myself if I’m going to try and scrub the rust out of things and I’ve found the right kind of paint to get this project going. I’d like to think it’s going to be beautiful and appreciated. For the time being, once it’ll be done, it’ll hang here though. Maybe if I find another cage before they move into the building next door (that I’m pretty sure won’t happen before spring as is), I can fix it up and let them have that one, keep the first one I ever made here. It makes more sense.
Quentin makes sure I take plenty of breaks, I eat my food and keep a bottle of water on hand. Of course I kept the water on hand but I also kept it under a small cloth of its own. The first time I took a sip, the top was covered with rust dust, it had been unpleasant and I had to dump my water, rinse out the bottle and start over while keeping the top on.
I’m plenty proud of my work on this cage. At first all I had thought about was clean it up, paint it up and hang it. I’ve added little things here and there, small metal works, just a flower here, a fake bird there. There’s still more than enough room to set up candles in there and light them up without having to open the cage and that was the plan. There’s nothing that can burn in the setup which is even better, that would have been terrible.
For now, it’s set up in that room that we’ve set up as a proper guest room though it’s still a slight sort of thing. It has a bed, a dresser and a bedside table. Now in the corner it has a small shelf-set and the cage is atop it, looking proud and fitting with the rest of the decor. I’m proud of myself for my first job doing this.
Of course, I also took breaks while I was working to take care of my usual mock-chores. Check up on the garden, make sure to gather what is ready to be eaten and all. It’s automated for the most part but still these fruits and veggies don’t pick themselves and the flowers won’t prune themselves. Quentin offered to do it in my stead but I didn’t want to completely lose myself to this project.
He looks happy to see the bird cage where I set it at right now and I can’t help but be even more pleased with myself. At first I really was certain he wouldn’t want it anywhere near the house at all so it’s comforting to know he’s changed his mind. I admit, it wouldn’t really have fit with the current set up, with the mostly modern look of the living room and the kitchen. The guest room however is a bit more antiquated so it’s a good spot for it.
I will be looking to find another one and if I can’t, I might just try to get all the materials I need, find a fitting image and see about building them one up from scratch, that might make it an even more meaningful gift and I’m hoping they’d like it. Still if I do that it might take up even more of my time so I’ll just try to see about finding one either in the antique shop again or online. You can find just about anything and everything you want online at this point.