Thursday, May 30, 2013



I'm in Nebraska.  I'm going to be here for a while.  Details are unimportant at this point other than to say if anyone had ever told me I'd have an extended stay in Nebraska I'd tell them (a) only if my car breaks down there or (b) you must be smokin' crack.  But in all honesty, if they'd told me that about South Carolina a decade ago I would have said the same thing.

I'm here for a purpose.  And, I'm here with an open mind, which I've learned from experience is key.  So far so good.  The flight here was uneventful.  I'm staying with some dear friends while I get my feet planted, so I don't feel at all isolated or alone.  I can focus on what I'm here to do.  I've already been to the fitness center to establish as much of a routine as I can.  All in all - it has been a good week so far.

If you've followed my adventures for any length of time you may remember me saying that my career would most likely take me to places outside Charleston.  I also indicated how tired I had become with the weekly drive between Charleston and Raleigh so I hoped my next endeavor would involve flying rather than driving.  Well, all have come to pass.

Some would ask, "Why Nebraska?"  Well....that's where the opportunity is.  I had several options but, in all honesty, most were more of the "same".  The deciding factor wouldn't be one about learning or doing new and interesting things.  It would be about money, and whichever city seemed to provide the best quality of life (and proximity to Charleston).  But this particular opportunity is unique, and different, and in my way of looking at regret , well, I would have regretted passing it by.

One thing about my nature - I am drawn to unique, to different, to "other".  It is a strong motivator for me, as there is very little that could have pried me away form my little heaven in Charleston - especially in a place that has a winter.  But we'll cross that bridge when we get to it.  For now, I'm at the beginning pages of the new chapter in my life that I've been mentioning.

So - here I am.  We've had storms come thru every day this week.  In Charleston the threat is Hurricanes.  Well, here the threat is tornadoes.  It's more humid than I imagined - not that it has any significant bearing on anything other than how my hair behaves.  If you want humid - visit central Texas or South Carolina in the summer.

I've only got a foothold here.  I'm staying thru the end of next week to find a place to live and make other logistical arrangements.  Now that I'm comfortable that this will endure for a while it's time to take care of business.

I've already been pleasantly surprised.  There's lots to do.  There's a Black Crowes concert here on Saturday that I might go to - I'd love to see them.  One of the local cities even has a team in the "Lingerie Football League" (link here).  Who knew?  I got a groupon offer for tickets to one of the games and over 300 have already been bought!  Sheesh.  Anyway - like I said earlier - open mind.  I enjoy being pleasantly surprised.  It helps to offset some of the disappointments.

I've already make arrangements to fly back home next weekend.  And although I've got no complaints here so far I'm already looking forward to it.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Ready or Not.

When I got back to Charleston from Rochester last week I had a list as long as my arm of things that I needed to do before leaving again Monday.  I'm thrilled to admit that almost ALL of them got done.  I'm sure I've forgotten something that should have been on the list but isn't but I can only do so much.

There are a number of things that didn't happen which are more disappointing to me than the things that did, but that's another story.  Lord knows I've been busy.  I was up this morning before 6, finished packing, made the 3+ hr drive from home to Charlotte, and as I type this I'm sitting at the gate.  With everything that has happened it seems like it has already been a full days worth but it's only half over.  I'll sleep on the plane. 

If all goes according to plan I'll end the day in Nebraska.  The weather is absolutely gorgeous here today....I'm told that they're expecting thunderstorms in Nebraska this afternoon so I hope that doesn't delay anything.  I can only control so much, and weather isn't one of those things.

So, as much as I'd like to be at a picnic, or shopping, or at the beach today, or even just home unpacking I'll be flying.  Again.

Happy Memorial Day - wherever you might be. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Everything Begins.

I just noticed that my last post was from last Sunday.  I have no idea where the time goes.

On Sunday I was in Rochester.  The short version of the last week is that I flew from Rochester to Charlotte on Tuesday and drove the rest of the way back to Charleston yesterday.  So, long story short - I'm home.  I've been home for a bit over a day now for the first time in a couple of weeks.  It's nice.

In life - things rarely last.  I'd say that they never last, except for my general life outlook to never say never.  In this case, my stay here at home will last a few more days.  Then things get complicated.  Again.

I've said for a while now that my relationship with Charleston is a story of unrequited love.  My career opportunities in the specialty that has allowed me to do the many things I do in life here, in this city, are limited.  I continue to contract mainly because it provides the opportunity to get back here. Thus, my yucky weekly commutes back and forth to Raleigh for 6 months.

I've known that reality for a long time, but another of my life outlooks is that if you want something bad enough you'll do what you need to do to realize them.  That's just the way life works.  I really have no formal "thing" keeping me here except, of course, the deep-seated commitment that I've made to my home here.  It is a relationship I intend to remain true to.

That said - Unless something unexpected happens I've accepted another contract and am scheduled to begin it next week.  It's not here in Charleston.  For that matter, it's not even in the same time zone.  It's extraordinary, and very exciting.  There are reasons that more specifics aren't important right now.  The only reason I mention it at all is that it'll probably be important to know that to understand some of what happens over the next few weeks.

On other topics, I went to my hairdresser yesterday and got 3 or 4 inches cut off the bottom of my hair.  I seem to wear it up 80% or more of the time - whether in a ponytail or a clip - because it's just plain hot to wear it down.  Generally speaking I like my "look" with a little shorter hair and now I've got it.

I went to the MAC store today.  They're good friends now, and the MAC Summer collection came out this morning.  We "played" for a little was good fun.  There was a time when the thought doing something like that was like yearning for forbidden fruit.  Now, it's just fun.

I went to see Star Trek in IMAX 3D with my brother-in-law while I was in Rochester.  I enjoyed it very much....

Leaving Rochester was difficult.  It always is.  I had a wonderful time with family, friends, spending some time with old neighbors and visiting places that have some level of significance to me.  The dinner on Saturday night was great, too.

Now that I'm back home I've got a long list of things to do before I have to leave again.  I spent today working through the list....crossed a number of things off.  I fear that there's more to do than time to do it over the next few days.  Especially given that it's a Holiday weekend, it's supposed to be nice outside, and I'm hoping to use the time wisely.  But, as I said at the outset....everything ends.  And, everything begins.

Both will happen on Monday.  Whatever gets done before then will be done.  Whatever doesn' will just have to wait.

But right now, one chapter is winding down and another is getting ready to begin.  I'm looking forward to seeing how it all plays out.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Sunday - so good to me.

I'm moving slowly this morning.  Last night around midnight is when I hit the wall of fatigue that has probably been building for the past couple of weeks, through my trips to Phoenix, back to Charleston, and then up here to Rochester.

The centerpiece of this trip was to speak at the Empire State Pride Agenda Spring Dinner at the Convention Center last night.  It was a wonderful event, and I'm pleased with my own particular portion of the evening.

I haven't spoken at a big dinner in a couple of years.  There was a time when I seemed to be doing it, like, every other week.  When I do things like this I don't write down my remarks - they come from the heart and flow out through the mouth so you never know how it will all flow.  It's just as comfortable now as it ever was to stand in front of 600 people and feel a that you're part of a big group-hug.

I had some wonderful people approach me to chat last one.  One couple are parents of a trans teen, and sought me out to tell me how important my book had been in their coming to peace with it.  A teacher from one of the local high schools told me that they've got 3 trans kids active in their local GSA.  I find it tremendously gratifying, and a true barometer of just how far we've come, that kids are able to come out and adults are able to find the resources to be supportive.  Anyway - I had dozens of great conversations last night which is partly why I think I hit the fatigue wall once I had time to decompress.

I've given talks all over the country, but there's something special about doing it here in Rochester.  I've spent more time here than any other place in my entire life....16 straight years after getting married in the early '80s and if anyplace feels like home it's here.  It was so nice to see familiar faces, friends, and to bask in the comfort of coming back.

My "date" last night was my sister.  I think she really enjoyed herself.  She's attended a number of things with me over the years but I think this was probably the first she's been to something like this.  I gave the "keynote address" which was based on recognition both that I'm a local and the need to pass GENDA here.  As always - I spoke from the heart and I felt both thankful and honored to have done my part in making such a well-planned, well-executed event a success.  Congratulations to everyone involved.

I sometimes wonder what people are expecting when I walk onto the stage to talk, especially at these kinds of events.  Some have seen me before, but most have no clue who I am or what I've done or what I'm going to say.  Perhaps the fact that some are impressed with what I've got so say is that they've got low expectations in the first place.  Or perhaps it's that I'm actually some combination of being fairly articulate, passionate, funny, and most importantly that I speak from the heart.  Regardless, the thing I find dragging the most this morning is my voice, and my throat.  I envision a some cough drops in my very near future.

I'm spending some time with family today.  And I plan to stop by the Lilac Festival.  It's a very pleasant day so I'm going to take some time to enjoy it.

My sister and I getting ready for the ESPA dinner....

Friday, May 17, 2013

Home to Home to Home....

I've written quite a bit about the need for a sense of "home" over recent months.  It remains a significant life-force and motivator.

This is the first week that I can remember in my life ever being in perhaps the 3 places that most contain that feeling of "home" for me.  I spent the beginning of the week in the Phoenix area.  I flew across country to South Carolina yesterday.  And I'm in the middle of flying from Charleston to Rochester.

Admittedly, the time in Charleston was a blur.  I arrived after 10 last night, was in bed at midnight, and spent most of the morning taking care of "stuff" that needed attention after having been gone for the past week.  I unpacked/repacked, and all seems as though it's going smoothly.  As I type this I'm in JFK airport during my layover.

I'll admit the JFK is not my favorite airport for layovers.  I'd avoid it if I could.  But in this case I can't.  I've got a couple of hours here and my only hope is that everything goes smoothly.  Otherwise I could get stranded here for the night which would NOT be cool.

The week has pretty much worked like clockwork.  Kinda scary, actually.  Flights yesterday were uneventful and on time.  Weather has been great.  I got lots of what I wanted/needed to get done (in terms of Plan B) in Phoenix, and by the time I packed up to fly back east yesterday I had finally acclimated to the time change.  No matter. I'm back east again so it's time to de-acclimate.

I've got enough to keep me busy.  I'm studying for a test.  As odd as this might sound, I enjoy taking tests.  I always have.  This is a difficult test and the study guide I've chosen is a big, clunky book but I'll find the time to work through it all over the next couple of weeks.

I've alluded to something big coming after this trip.  Unless something unexpected happens (which I always expect) I'm at a fascinating crossroads in my life and in my career.  I have no more to say about it than that right now, except that when I get back to Charleston early next week I'll already have my eyes on what happens next.  This particular thing will affect every aspect of my world, so it's no small thing.

The path of a career is a fascinating thing.  On a resume, it's a story.  My own career has been pretty much in IT for most of my life and I've been very fortunate to have been able to do some interesting, worthwhile things.  When I was hired by Dell and went to Austin in 2001 I didn't realize I'd be making a decision to change lanes from being a technical lead to Project Management but that's what happened.  There was no fanfare, no drum-roll indicating the fact that a decision had been made and that something had happened that would change the direction of my career.  I naively expected it'd be a temporary thing, but at this point I've become type-cast and I'm ok with that.  The key is to find interesting projects to manage....

Anyway, for a number of reasonsI feel like I'm at a similar crossroads that will set the direction of the next phase of my career.  Once I start down will become re-defined.  That might sound odd to admit for someone at this stage of their lives but it's true.  And I'm not afraid to make the decisions it will take...if things continue on their current trajectory the decisions have actually already been made.  All that's really left is the logistics.

Of course, logistics can get fairly complicated.  But the logistics of my life have confounded me for years but always seem to work themselves out and I'm confident that this will be one of those times.

Anyway, I'm getting ahead of myself.  Over the next few days I'll be with family, in the place where my son was born and where I've still got 15+ years of wonderful memories and good friends.  I'm looking forward to it.  But I must admit that part of my attention is focusing on what comes next.  Specifically - the logistics.

Gotta run.  Flight getting ready.

The scene at JFK 

Landing in Rochester - The Finger Lakes at Sunset w Lake Ontario in the distance

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The Simple Pleasures

It's Tuesday.  You couldn't prove it by me other than my iPhone says it is.  I've lost track of days.  And time, for that matter.  As I type this my laptop is telling me that it's 1:15pm and it actually feels like lunch time but I'm still sipping on my first coffee of the morning.

I've spent part of this trip selling the material "stuff" of my life away, $200 or so at a time.  Some of it I really liked, but whenever and wherever I go it's just "stuff" that can be replaced.  Bye-bye to my Klipsch Legend series speakers, and my bed.  The guy who bought the bed got it for his granddaughter and sent me a picture of it set up in her bedroom with stuffed animals on it - nice to know it went someplace where it's appreciated rather than sitting in a hot storage unit.

I'm scheduled to fly back home on Thursday, and suddenly there seems to be too much to do and too little time to do it in.  I'm not quite sure how that happens, especially given that if all had gone according to plan I would have left on Saturday and would be arriving home in the moving truck today.  What I do know is that I'm better mentally and physically thanks to the change in plan.  I forget how much I enjoy it here in between visits.

I spent most of Mother's Day with my ex-neighbors who live around the corner from my ex-.  We haven't seen each other in a couple of years but they're the kind of friends where time can pass between visits but when we see each other to catch up it's like no time has passed at all.  I love them, and had the most pleasant day there.

I'll also share that I ended up chatting with my ex- for a couple of hours.  We don't have much contact these days so it was nice to just catch up on life without tears, guilt, anger, or unkind words from either of us.  It's the kind of thing I had hoped we could do years ago.  But frankly, the trajectory of our relationship over recent years tends to be one step forward followed by a step and a half back.  We'll see.

I'm spending part of my time here re-connecting with things I enjoy and people I miss.  I hiked Squaw Peak yesterday morning.  It was tough.  There was a time when I was in really good shape when I could bound up the trail without stopping.  Not now.  I had to stop twice to catch my breath and get a sip of water.  It's quite the workout, and if all goes according to how I hope it will I'll do it again tomorrow.  I didn't get to spend as much time at the top as I would have liked because there were just too many gnats flying around my head.

At the bottom of the Squaw Peak trail....
The view across the Valley from "my spot"

I stopped by Dr. Meltzer's office to say 'hi'.  I visited with a friend I've come to know over email these past few years and it was wonderful to finally  meet her.

I played tennis once since I've been here, and hope to do that tomorrow evening again too.  I've been in the pool every day.  Between the hiking, the tennis, and the swimming being here is just physically healthier for me, and I've made a commitment to myself that a dozen pounds I'm currently carrying will be gone before the "official" beginning of summer a month from now.

The view from the pool.  

The days here have been warm and sunny....highs in the 90's moving to 100 or so over the next few days.  But the heat has never bothered me, and you'll never hear me complain about the heat whether it be here or in SC.  Cold is another matter.  The place where the contract I've been offered is gets cold in the winter.  We'll see how this plays out.

I'm not going to get into too many specifics of the work because there's an inherent need to be discreet. If you know what I do, you'd understand why it's particularly important in this new role.  Today I'm scheduled to visit their office here in the Valley to fill out paperwork and stuff.  I need to go get finger-printed at some point, too, either this week or next.  As I say - my days are filling up and there are lots of things I both need to and want to do before I leave.

One thing I wanted to do was visit my favorite mall in the world.  Scottsdale Fashion Square.  Ahhhh..the simple pleasures.

Scottsdale Fashion Square - my favorite mall
There was an article in the NY Times a couple of days ago on MMA fighter Fallon Fox.  I enjoyed the article (read it here).  One of the ironies is that I'd love to step into the ring with her.  The problem I've got is that after all the expense and trouble it took to get my face where I want it, I don't need to get involved in a sport that would specifically target it.  But I know the whole "Reluctant" things.....been there, done that a number of times.

I'll be in Charleston for less than 24 hours before flying to Rochester.  I'll be doing the keynote at the Empire State Pride Agenda Spring Dinner on Saturday (link here), so if you're in the area and can make it I'd love to meet up.  I haven't been to an LGBT dinner in a couple of years, so I'm actually looking forward to this (especially since it's in my home town).  The weather there over the next few days looks good, and I'm hoping to get out to the Lilac Festival on Sunday if I can.  I also expect that there will be more reconnecting with some dear friends I rarely see.  I guess there's lots of that going on in my world this week....

With that - gotta go.  As I mentioned there's more that needs to happen over the next couple of days than I have time to do it in.  I'm not quite sure how that happened, but I suppose it's just that some things never change.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

COP (Change of Plan)

Sat. May 12


If all had been going according to the original plan I'd be finishing loading the truck this morning and starting the long drive across country.  The plan has changed.

The last few days have been chock-full of a variety of emotions.  A roller coaster, really.  But the real decision happened a couple of mornings ago as I went to the storage unit, looked in it at all my "stuff", and realized (a) just how much stuff I've still got and the size of the effort to move it and (b) that until I'm more settled than I am bringing more stuff actually creates more problems than it solves.  Honestly, that's a decision that could only be made when face-to-face with all the "stuff".  So, I made it.

I've also started selling a few things.  I've done a pretty good job downsizing but the fact of the matter is that when you've got a 4-bedroom house full of stuff you can get rid of half of it and still have lots and lots.  I've got 2 queen sized mattresses w/ box springs - don't need both of them and frankly I'd happily get rid of both of them and get a new one in Charleston.  That's one of the easier decisions.  I've got a pair of Klipsch speakers that I just love but they're big, heavy things.  65 pounds each.  I'd rather not sell them but I've got some people coming by to look at them today so if they're gone I'll just need to let go.

The job situation seems to have settled itself out for now - I got an offer yesterday that's too good to pass up - but I'll believe it's real when I actually start there.  As always, I'll need to be vague about what I'm doing but I will say that it's in a city a thousand miles away from Charleston (and from Phoenix, for that matter) and will require travel if I'm going to commute regularly.  The main problem with the Raleigh commute was the drive.  I'd rather fly somewhere than have that God-awful 4 hour drive twice a week.  I came to dread that.  Anyway - we haven't pinpointed a start date because there are some logistical decisions I need to consider over the weekend.

The question on the table now is how/when to get back east.  The original plan of driving the truck is off the table, and the price of flights has been fluctuating.  I've tentatively made arrangements to head back near the end of next week as I've got a commitment in Rochester next weekend.  Still working that, as well.

I wish things weren't always so complicated with me, but they just are.  I accept most of the fault for that.  But I still haven't decided whether it's a blessing or a curse.  Regardless, it just is and I deal fairly well with it.  At least, I think I do.

I've had a very pleasant visit here so far.  The Phoenix area has more dear friends for me than any other place, so it has been nice connecting again.  I really do miss the area.  One of the things I've written about several times in the past (I did a YouTube video on it - see it here) is climbing Squaw Peak and contemplating the universe in a special little spot I've got up there.  I'll be making that climb tomorrow.

I always enjoy my visites here.  The desert is a unique part of my Yin/Yang and it has been too long.  The energy, the colors, the sunsets, the people.....

The view out front


So, I spend the better part of the day in the storage unit.  I made a dent.  I sold a mattress and box spring, and a head board.  And I sold my beloved Klipsch speakers.

The storage unit - Making Progress

I probably would have stayed longer but a scorpion fell on me and creeped me out.

The scorpion that fell on me after I brushed it off, and shortly before it's demise.

I've been drinking water all night - very thirsty.  Every time I come back I get reminded how dry it is here and how important it is to keep hydrated.

I got a call from my mom saying she had been in a car accident with a school bus.  The ambulance took her to the ER as she was concerned that the impact may have done something to her pacemaker but as of when I talked to her the only visible injury was a quarter-size bruise.  She's disappointed that I won't be there for Mother's Day, as am I, but things just change sometimes and there's nothing I can do about it at this point.  Just in case this happened I put a card for her in the mail earlier in the week....

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Day of Rest

At 10:30 last night, as I lay down in bed, my body knew it had been thru a long day.  The entire drive 200-mile from Charleston to Charlotte, and the night there before my flight, went flawlessly.  I was up yesterday before 5am (3am Phoenix time) to catch my flight, all the elements cooperated, and I landed in Phoenix by noon.  It's nice to be home.

I think of myself having 2 homes - my Yin and my Yang - as the Valley is the other half of that combination.  The elements that brought me here with my wife and son in the mid-1990's always seem to call me back.  Part of it is the comfort level I have with the area, part of it is the wonderful friends I've got here, part of it is memories from over the years, and part of it is - well - something I can't explain.  The Charleston area has become home for me in recent years, but the Valley has never lost its grip on part of that in me as well.

I am approaching what I have come here to do in a very rational way, or at least I'm trying to.  The fact that my "things" have been in a storage unit here has maintained a foothold, and I've been able to justify it by explaining to myself in one of two ways - (1) I haven't had the time to come and get it and (2) I may end up back here in some capacity someday so it's just waiting for me.  There is a significant element of bittersweet considering that once I pack it up and take it away it will be the first time in nearly a dozen years that I haven't had that foothold.  This trip is more emotional for me than I'll admit here.  I need a good cry.

My electrologist, Maria, picked me up and took me to her office so I could shower and get out of my comfy "travel" clothes.  I never understood why so many people seem to dress up for long drives or flights - it seems to me that that's a time for practical, comfortable clothes - but that's a whole other topic.  Typically, I'm in gym clothes or something similar on my travels.

I visited my doctor - Dr. Fisher - yesterday afternoon.  He played a major role in my transition and I just stopped by to see how he's doing and to say 'hi'.  I first started seeing him 15 years ago - seems like a lifetime ago in many ways.  Anyway, it was great to see him and reconnect.

Maria arranged a dinner with some of my dear friends here.  By the time we all met my body was telling me it was bed time but it was still early here.  I don't have that same level of friendship with so many people in any other city.  Perhaps that's a big reason why I still feel so at home here.

In Phoenix: Dinner with dear friends at Chelsea's Kitchen
Today is a day to rest.  I need some time from the pace of the last couple of weeks to catch my breath before the next part of this begins.  One friend thought it was interesting that I actually schedule time to rest and catch my breath, but I've learned from experience that it's an important element of these kinds of long-term, difficult, things.  If I don't schedule it, it just won't happen.  But, one of the things I really enjoy about my friends is that they're up to doing fun things.  I'm going to a Barre class with Laura this afternoon, and playing tennis this evening.  I'll worry about some of the other things that need to happen while I'm here after my "down" time.

Back home in South Carolina ex-governor Mark Sanford won the Congressional Runoff election for my district over the sister of Stephen Colbert (story here).  Sanford had been governor until he disappeared for a few days and said he was hiking the Appalachian Trail when in fact he had gone for a short tryst in South America to see his mistress there.  The ensuing scandal and subsequent resignation made national news and his political career was left for dead.  But here he is...back in office again.  I'm not exactly sure what that says about politics, or forgiveness, or short memories, or South Carolina in general.  All I know is that if I were there to vote (instead of on a plane) I wouldn't have voted for him.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Good at That.

Sat., May 4

So, it's almost 11pm and tonight is my first night in my new place.  I'm more worn out than I think I am as I've spent a good part of the day cleaning out of my old place and moving into my new one.  These last few hours I've been unpacking so the place feels more like home than just a bunch of boxes.  There's still a long way to go.

I have very little furniture, so making it "homey" can only go so far.  As I type this I'm sitting on my air mattress, watching a dvd, getting ready to sleep.  I'll admit to there being an element of disquiet sleeping in a new place, especially one as far away from other stuff as this is.  I'd feel better if the dogs were here (they're not - long story that doesn't need telling right now).

In their place I have some security next to me that I hope I never need to use.

I suppose I've had more than my fair share of "first nights" in new places in recent years (which, not surprisingly, corresponds to a similar number - minus one - of last nights) so you'd think I'd be used to it by now.  Hotels I get used to.  New places, well, they're different.  So far here tonight I've learned that the shower is good, for the first time in a long time I think I've got enough closet space, and I can envision what it will look like in a month.

My next few weeks are crazy so I should probably enjoy this little bit of quiet time as it won't last long.  I know I've said that countless times before, but perhaps I don't know any other way to live which actually sort of makes me sad.  I realize that I'm at a stage of life where I probably should be slowing down and I'm trying to do that.  I really am.  But the next couple of weeks, starting Monday, involve a drive from here to Charlotte to catch a cross-country flight, several days of finally packing big stuff into a truck in Phoenix, a 2,000 mile drive back, two days of unpacking the truck (with help I haven't found yet), a flight to Rochester for an event there followed by a couple of down days, then a flight back to Charlotte so I can drive home to finish "moving in".  All that in 2 weeks.  Oh - and I've got a number of "next" career opportunities in various stages of progress so that's happening - it needs to happen - along the way as well.

That's the plan, anyway.  It's important to have a plan although frankly, my plans have a way of changing.  I don't know if it's a problem with my planning, or that life sometimes has its own plan that I don't know about.  Either way, we'll see how these two weeks play out.  Then?  Not sure yet.  I don't have a plan that far in advance yet.

Sunday May 5

I finished cleaning out my apartment downtown today, so that's done.  Chapter over.  Then I moved most of the last stuff I have in storage here to the house today.  It wasn't all that simple as some of the reason that it's the last stuff is because it's bulky and heavy, and I didn't have any help.  But I'm fairly capable when I need to be.  It got moved.

I should probably be doing more unpacking right now, but I'm thinking of taking a shower, going to a fairly nice dinner (Italian is sounding good to me), and getting to bed at a reasonable time.  I've got a busy day tomorrow, and it will start early.  If all goes according to "plan" I'll be in Charlotte by around this time tomorrow.  But there's a lot that needs to happen between now and then.

The question I'm asking myself, and I think I know the answer, is whether to pack much for this significant trip or just get what I need when I get to Phoenix.  I have a philosophical issue with the $25 baggage fee (I Southwest) and I could probably get what I need for about that.  So, I suspect I'll pack fairly lightly.

Monday morning, May 6

I just noticed that I've been adding to this entry over the past few days but haven't posted it yet.  I just had my first official "meal" in my new place....scrambled eggs for breakfast sitting on my big front screened-in porch.  I don't have a table or chairs here yet, so I sat at the outdoor furniture I got but rarely use.  It's a beautiful morning....rainy crummy weekend followed by nice clear cool weather.

I'm trying to unpack as much "stuff" as I can this morning because if all goes according to the plan I explained earlier I'll be leaving here later today, and the next time I'm back will be a week from tomorrow in a truck full of my furniture so it will all need someplace to go.  I've downsized considerably in recent years, but still - whatever doesn't fit into the 16' truck stays behind.

I'm actually enjoying today so far, although I've spent so much time unpacking to find key things, responding to job calls/emails/working with the Directv guy, and generally straightening up that I may need to add a couple of hours to the day to finish all the stuff I need to do.  If we can agree on the concept that moving, in general, sucks then finding little ways to make is suck less is important.  I'm typically good at finding those nuggets.

I don't have much time to chat, as much as I'd love to.  As I said - it's a wonderfully pleasant day here and if I didn't know everything I had to do over the next ten days I might even be able to enjoy it.  But I feel like a hiker at the foot of a huge summit, just getting ready to start taking those first few steps up the path.

I could write about a bunch of other stuff...stuff happening in the world....but right now my world is a fairly small one and that's getting all my attention.  If I could only get the lump in the pit of my stomach to die down it'd all be fine.  But, barring that, it's pretty much a matter of plan the work then work the plan right now.  And this part begins in about an hour when I leave here.

Wish ne luck.  This is going to be interesting.