Last week at this time the area was digging itself out from under Snowmageddon 2014. Yesterday we tied the record high temperature for the date at 73 degrees, and today we broke it as we almost got to 80. The remaining piles of snow are still there, but they won't be for long. These have been beautiful days.
Tonight I'm sitting in my hotel room, as has recently been the norm. The dogs are here, finally asleep around me. This will be the last night of this chapter of our journey. It has been like this for a month. Tonight I stopped for gas as the same station that we stopped at when we first arrived with the trailer behind us a month ago. It seems like much longer ago than that.
Tomorrow morning I get the keys to the new apartment. I've already started moving stuff out of storage unit #3 (here in Charlotte) to the patio to make the move-in easier. We'll see how that goes.
If all goes according to my plan I will have vacated 2 of my 3 storage units by the end of the month. That's no small feat. I've also done my homework on this apartment - it's more like a condo than an apartment. It was recently been "upgraded" - marble counter tops, stainless steel appliances, plantation shutters, attached garage, huge patio, all kinds of little things that made it different from the others that I looked at. Of course, these things come at a price but my goal this time around has been to pick something that would last for a long time. This contract is scheduled to run for 2 years so we'll see how it all plays out.
My birthday is Saturday. I was thinking back to recent birthdays and most of them have been pretty unremarkable. My 50th birthday was very special. The following year I was driving from Charleston to the University of Virginia and we stopped at a Cracker Barrel. Another year I was in Phoenix and worked all day - my mom and sister were visiting and we had a nice dinner. Another year a certain someone and I met after work for a happy hour and dins. Another year I drove 800 miles to meet my son and stopped to visit my friends in Asheville on the way back.
This year will include moving - I've already rented a trailer. Ugh. But as with most things it's important to dwell on the outcomes rather than the drudgery involved in achieving the outcome. The goal of finally surrounding myself with MY stuff, and be completely OUT of the storage unit thing, is a significant one. I haven't had that in a long, long time.
I'm also reminded of significant birthdays past. On my birthday in 1998 I decided to shave my legs - not an insignificant thing considering the fact that my wife was less than keen on the idea. At the time my need to express Donna was pushing me further and further down the path, and this was more than simply about hairy legs. It was a step towards identity. Needless to say, they have been smooth ever since.
On my birthday in 1999 I turned 40. We had talked about doing something for our 40th birthdays for years. However, at that point we were barely speaking and I had no idea whether we'd do anything at all until the night before. We met for dinner at Morton's Steak House but she got upset in the middle of it and left. I tried to explain it to my son but the thing he was most interested in was whether or not we were going to stay for dessert.
Anyway - it's a day that comes and goes and carries some symbolic significance to it. I will take a few moments to stop, assess, and appreciate. More important to me isn't what I do, it's who I'm with. I expect to be with the person I want to be with, so everything else is fine.
I've got passes for several days at Disney in Orlando but we probably won't use those quite yet. No hurry there.