Sunday, January 9, 2011

Visiting Old Neighbors

We have been doing mundane things like groceries, refilling the gas tank, eating too much.

Thursday was a little warmer and I convinced Gary to walk with me to the ‘woods’. This is a wooded area on the other side of the park. There are trails to take but I like to go off the beaten path (if safe). A little ways in take a jog to the left then sharp right and you’ll end up in a long-leaf pine forest. When the wind blows it makes the softest swishing noise. This reminds me of the pine forest behind our house in New Jersey growing up. I would take a book and beach towel, hike on down there and find a soft spot on the needles. The breeze would stir the branches into whispering and sighing, and the smell of pine would permeate my clothes making my outing last that much longer on the walk home. Ahhh, memories. That’s what life is made of.

Yesterday we got up fairly early (maybe 8) and were on the road to Sarasota by 9. It takes an hour and a half on highways 4 and 75. We needed to clean the gutters, and hopefully get inside to see What They’ve Done to the Place. I love coming into our neighborhood as it still is a home for us. But first we needed to stop at our storage units to put in the Christmas stuff and take out the Little Giant ladder. I made Gary buy the heavy-duty one years ago, and heavy it is. But it’s safe for climbing the 30 feet to the roof of our old home in Raleigh and the 12 feet to our home in Sarasota. It also holds two people without getting that wobbly feeling. Yes, we did get it in our Jeep (might have taken a picture – forgot) and fortunately, the storage unit is right next door to our neighborhood. We pulled onto our street and immediately see our ‘gardener’ Mike and his wife Stacy. Hugs and Happy New Year wishes ensue. Stacy pulls out her phone to show us their new home in Waynesville, NC that someday they will move to permanently. It’s an adorable old bungalow cottage on six or so acres. Other friends drive by and wave, so we stop to see them and neighbors recognize our Jeep and come to visit. It was very smart to arrive on a Saturday because we got to talk and visit with 10 of our old friends.

Our renter asked us in, and she showed us a couple of issues we could fix and one we couldn’t. We’ll have to call a professional for that one. Once again, the ladder came in handy when we had to clean the ceiling vent 25 feet up in the hall. It was so strange seeing someone else’s furniture in our house. But they are the best renters. We couldn’t be luckier and the best thing is, they love it there and want to stay forever. That’s such a load off our mind.

A nice visit with another relocated neighbor with drinks and snacks, and then it is dark. We decide to stop for sushi on our way back to Kissimmee and boy, that was delicious. No more sushi craving.

Today we hung out with Donna and Ron checking out the hotel their son and family are staying at during their visit the end of January. Then we went over to Downtown Disney for a walk around. We had planned to have dinner there, but it was so early, we decided to go find a Steak and Shake. I had coupons. I can’t believe it’s come to coupons. My mom used them at the grocery store all the time. I used them off and on in my stix & brix life, but now it’s a challenge to find the best ones in the Sunday paper that we all can use for restaurants, car maintenance, food or anything. Hey we need to save that couple of bucks on a regular basis. Then we can afford sushi once or twice a year.

All things considered, a good weekend! Hope you had one, too.

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