Fall has finally arrived to California's Central Valley, thank God, because the heat and humidity were making me crazy. I HATE hot weather, so I'm praying for a long, cold winter. But for now, I'm loving the cool mornings and evenings, a few brisk days here and there, and watching the leaves start to turn orange and red. Although the season's change isn't as noticeable here as it is in the Midwest or Northeast, it is certainly more so than I was used to Southern CA, so I will enjoy it while I can. On weekends in the autumn, I take Tallulah to the park for her walk, and while she sniffs and romps with wild abandon through the piles of leaves, I enjoy all the fall colors. I think I may have posted these photos last year, but I'll share them again. LOVE this time of year. I can't wait until the park looks like this again.
The past couple of months have been crazy money-wise. Summer bills are VERY high here: electric bill over $300/mo, water bills about $120/mo (and my grass still looks half dead). I even had to discontinue internet and cable because of the cost, which explains my long absence from the world of blogging. And, of course, there are all the other bills, plus food (why is it that produce is so expensive in California’s Central Valley, when we grow something like 80% of the fruits & vegetables grown in the US?! It’s insane!)
So, summer is a really tough time of year for me. I spent May through September cranky, hot, broke, bored and lonely. And I’ve come to the conclusion that this will never change as long as I live here. So I have decided to move back down south, closer to my sister and other family. Still can’t afford to buy in OC, and will likely have to downsize to a condo in the desert (with a small yard for Tallulah – goodbye big ol’ garden), but I’ll be much closer to family and friends. So even if I’m broke, at least I won’t be bored and lonely.
Thus, I’m getting rid of stuff left and right, and keeping only my favorite books and collectibles, which is really hard when you have a dozen collections, and you love everything, and you see your books as beloved friends. Tough, tough, tough. But it must be done, because this stuff is, after all, just STUFF.
So, I had a garage sale last month. I got rid of some furniture, a bunch of china and some craft items. I’m doing another garage sale next month, concentrating on selling Christmas decorations, more craft supplies, maybe a few books and anything that might make a good Christmas gift.
My job here is contracted through the end of next April and I don’t anticipate them renewing the contract. I’m not sure I’d want them to anyway. It is the most boring job on the planet, the pay is low (more than minimum wage, but not much), most of my co-workers aren’t very friendly, and management is a bit cold and indifferent. When I interviewed for the job, I was told that everyone there was like family; I wish they had told me it was a dysfunctional family!
So, come early spring, my job hunt down south will begin. Ack! I hate job hunting; it seems like that’s all I’ve done for the past two years.
In the meantime, I’m enjoying what I love about Central CA (because it’s not all bad, for crying out loud). I’m enjoying my house (because I really do love my cute house) with the big beautiful kitchen, and the brick fireplace, and my big yard, and the cool autumn weather, and the upcoming cold winter, and my nephew and his sweet wife, whom I shall miss, and farmland all around, and no traffic.
And while I’m enjoying what’s here, I’m also looking forward to what might yet be: to finding a job where I can actually support myself, to being able to hang out with my sister again, to finding old friends and crazy family members (yup, we’ve all got crazies in our families), and having a Barnes & Noble and a Trader Joe’s less than 50 miles away, and milder summer weather, and lower bills, and a new start.
But no matter where I am, this one is always a constant.
When I adopted her, I thought I was rescuing a big giant dog who would never get adopted because of her size. Well, the joke was on me, because I didn’t rescue her, she rescued me. She loves me no matter how much I weigh and no matter how crappy I look. When I am at my worst, she still loves me. She comforts me every time I cry (and it has been quite often in the past few months), and she looks excited when I laugh, like she's just dying to share the joke (and maybe she does). So, I can't say that the past two years here have been a waste: I found the sweetest companion I could ever find. Lucky me!!
Thanks so much for visiting. Hope you leave a comment; I love reading them.