Sunday, March 14, 2010

Comin' Home

We couldn't have asked for a better day to leave California. It was pouring. Fog shrouded San Francisco, rendering the city invisible from our perch across the bay. The weight of our overstuffed suitcases seemed even heavier as we lugged them up the flight of slippery, rain-soaked stairs. The cats who were unquestionably depressed didn't even bother to protest as we put them in their carriers on the back seat of our rented Kia wagon.

"It's better this way," my husband said as we drove down the steep, winding driveway for the last time.

I'd been thinking the same thing.

Fast forward to a few minutes after arriving home. "I like our house," he said enthusiastically.

I knew it. He wouldn't waste any time finding all kinds of reasons to stay put. The streets are flat; it's better for jogging. The birds are chirping. There is something green trying to grow in our yard. The weather isn't so bad. There were no home invasions while we were gone. There is plenty of salt left to use on the sidewalks next winter. Ugh!

I wanted to scream something about him having no balls but somehow managed to keep quiet. I knew that we'd never be able to pull up stakes and move across the country. I'm destined to live and die in the Midwest.

Stay cool. Be patient. He usually comes around; it just takes time. Or maybe he and I will have rooms of our own during the winter months. He can stay in his beloved home and frolic in the Winter Wonderland. I'll bask in warmer climes, surrounded by Mother Nature in all her glory.

Okay, so our house is lovely. I'll give him that. And there's something about the symmetry of houses placed in a neat row, the same distance from one another. True, the streets are wider and not jammed with cars parked haphazardly as they were in the Berkeley Hills. It's all very neat and orderly here.

But there are no leaves on the trees and no spring flowers blooming. Lake Michigan is cute and all that, but it ain't the Pacific Ocean. You've got to walk twice as far to equal the calories spent on walking up and down hills. And the headaches. The damn headaches. They're back with a vengeance. And now I have to think about the future and what I'm going to do with my life. It was such a pleasure putting everything on hold.

A dear friend in California encouraged me to be patient and to "process." But patience has never been my middle name, and this waiting for the right decision will be the death of me. For now I'll drag both feet and put them down in the here and now. At least I'll try.

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