Tuesday, August 29, 2023

7 States Later . . .

Spring desert poppies in Arizona
Last February we said goodbye to our home in St. Augustine, Florida, and drove across lots of states until we reached the snowy forests of central Arizona. I am still trying to adjust to this new home--which explains the nearly eight-month absence from this blog.

Old as I am, it became clear soon after the moving van dropped off our stuff and left that my flexibility for so much change ain't what it used to be.  Everything is different in this town we chose: 

  • Elevation (we went from 36 feet above sea level to 5000 feet [and there are consequences to that])
  • Summer, spring, winter, and a fall
  • An appalling lack of bagel shops
  • Most major retailers don't seem to know about this place
  • Limited medical services
  • Five trash collection companies you have to somehow pick among and hire one
  • Jaw-dropping panoramas along any highway
  • Friendly people
  • Lots and lots of dogs
  • Granite-based soil you can't push yard decorations into without power tools
  • Troops of elk that roam the town and help themselves to your roses and pear trees
When we left St. Augustine we lost our right to brag about living in America's oldest city. I knew I was going to miss that. But now we live in a town that hosts the country's longest-running rodeo, which of course we went to see last week. Few shows can match the spectacle of women racing their agile steeds around barrels in the dark brown dirt or young men hanging on desperately while thrashing broncos try to throw them to the ground.

We are beginning to learn the politics of the place and the layout of the local Walmart, but we have a long way to go. All of you who have moved a long, long way to a very different home know what I mean. 

More later from the Grand Canyon State.


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