Archive for Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Warmer climate appealing, but lacks neighbors

February 27, 2008

This is the time of the year when I start thinking about seeking out a warmer climate. And, my pique with winter has reached one of its all-time highs this year. It seems like we just get one wave of winter storms over, and before we can catch our breath, another bears down on us. Then, I start thinking envious thoughts about all the people I know who have escaped to Arizona or Florida or extreme southern Texas for the winter months.

However, I have some problem with splitting my life into two different habitats according to the season. First, I would never be able to pack everything I need for several months into a compact, transportable bundle. One of my pastimes involves organizing family pictures and researching family history. I have bundles and bundles of pictures and family information stored. In addition, I have my computer with many pictures and information stored on its drives. Also, I have high-speed Internet access and all of my reference books. These items would not fit in a recreation vehicle or in a bungalow. After all, I've spent a lifetime accumulating them.

And then, there's the social aspect of relocating to a different place for a good portion of the year. I'm now in a locality in which I and my husband are well acquainted. And, I know the people who surround me - at least I know some of them. I've always felt that if I were alone on the street or in my house, all I would need to do for help is to knock on a fellow townsman's door. My neighbors are all extremely thoughtful and kind. When my walk and driveway is laden with snow and ice, there's usually a knock on the door with an offer to shovel off the offending white stuff. There have been occasions when mysteriously, my driveway has been cleaned by unknown benefactors. And if all else fails, my daughter and her family are less than a mile away.

Many of our friends have chosen a nomadic lifestyle, but I don't envy them. There was a time when I would have enjoyed traveling a little, but I've never been really fond of it. I'm much happier reading books set in other locales than in actually exploring them in person. Sometimes, it seems to me that by the time one travels from one motel to another similar motel in a chain, all one really sees are the slight differences between one hotel and another. Of course, there are shops and restaurants and so-called tourist attractions, but they grow increasingly the same. Globalization has brought McDonalds and Starbucks to all corners of the Earth. Each shopping center seems to have the same stores such as Wal-Mart, Target, ad infinitum. Even bookstores have become much the same with such icons as Borders and Barnes and Noble. The small eccentric store with unique offerings still exists here and there, but time to seek them out is short when one is on the road.

In the end, I suppose I could be considered a real stick-in-the-mud or rather stick-in-the snow type. This way, spring will really seem wonderful when it finally comes.

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