Monday, December 31, 2018
I'm planning to start the new year off on saner footing than has been my recent habit: more sanguine, less crabby. Now fully retired, both The Beloved Spouse and I are planning to work diligently on the Farm itself, to make it more productive as a food source, more enjoyable to hang around in, and better suited to long-term residence.
For far too long I've spent too much time musing about leaving Texas. I've often referred to myself as an exile, longing for my lost home in the Owens River Valley, and making plans to move back eventually. For the past several years I've spent untold numbers of hours on Zillow and Bishop Realty looking for fairer pastures, if not in California, then perhaps Arizona, New Mexico, or (for a while anyway) Montana. I recently ran into a term that Portuguese-speakers use for this kind of nostalgia: saudade. (The link, from NPR, includes appropriate music.)
But I hadn't reckoned on becoming so attached to this house and this half acre that it would break my heart to leave it. I also hadn't reckoned on getting to be so old that it would be really stupid to leave top-notch sources of health care, dog-friendly family close enough to actually visit, and a very capable daughter who's willing to house us if we ever need it--or at least to help out when we need that.
So now that we've lost two well-loved pets in one year (Arlo died at almost fifteen last month), one of whom is buried in the yard, and acquired another cat (Molly) and another dog (Nylah), we seem to be acceptance mode: doing what needs to be done, putting up with annoyances, hunkering down, and abiding in place.
In the end, we don't really have any room to complain. We're comfortably off, we have what we need (and rather a lot of what we don't), we're probably healthier than we've been for most of the time we've been in this house, we have a few good friends, great kids who seem happy, and time to do what we like doing.
If we can manage to live through the horrific politics, and if the country doesn't stupid itself to death, maybe everything will turn out all right. We can always pack up the dog (and maybe the cat), hitch up the Shasta, and head west for a visit.
Meanwhile, the planet keeps turning, and sometimes the sun rises just as the moon sets. And we even get to see it.
Happy new year, Folks. Live long and prosper.
Photo note: On November 24 of this year, the sun rose just as the moon was setting, at around 6:55 am. The Skywatch Friday gods were smiling on me when I managed to get both shots within a minute of each other.