Labor of Celebration

It was hot, too hot, unable to step outside of the house hot — it sure didn’t feel like home. Having only lived in a four-season climate, this two-season climate was bordering on unbearable. That is, until a little drive revealed something unexpected. Non-palm tree lined streets? Neighborhoods with varied-looking houses? A lack of disrepair or poverty around every corner? A small and active downtown? It was like being home again. It beckoned.

The tipping point happened one night at the new house. In the kitchen, an odd feeling developed, “let’s go to the bedroom”, I insisted, unsure why. After sitting in the bedroom for a bit, a helicopter was heard overhead, then its spotlight shined through the bedroom window, then the side-gate slammed open, barking dogs running through. It turns out, someone fleeing the police was hiding in the lanai just outside the kitchen, I must have sensed the disturbance.

Living out a scenario from COPS was unpleasant, so I was determined to move to more genteel surroundings, scouring the want-ads until finding a suitable listing: computer programmer / software developer / coder. A work-at-home position uniquely fitted to my skill-set, providing the necessary income to move: Mission Accomplished! And with that miracle, I rented a small apartment in that quaint little town. But with palmetto bugs galore, leaf blower alarm clocks, and cigarette smoke pouring in from below — paradise didn’t last long. But a quick in-town move solved those problems — upgrade!

I worked non-stop to support this upgrade, it was a really nice place too, a separate office space, screened-in balcony, a pleasant view, a bathroom as large as a bedroom, walking distance to in-town restaurants, and it was down the street from a popular global travel destination. What more could one want? Perhaps the lack of a Global Financial Crisis.

Maybe just a coincidence, but the variety of work seemed to lessen around that time. And what was available, didn’t feel right anymore. Business relationships soured, and like that, it was over. My father also died, not that we had a great relationship, but prior to the move, we had been housemates for a few decades. Things kinda felt odd for a bit.

It’s kinda weird losing a parent, it’s like being next in line or something. I grew a beard and started drinking a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon every night with dinner, perhaps I became an adult at that point. But either way, the last of those three years was all down hill. I packed everything away in a storage unit and moved back to a four-season climate. Snow, oh how I missed you!


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