My Travels

I've been sick, so I've been thinking and writing for quite a few days. Let's talk about my travels...

It's been challenging to say the least, especially alone. I'm still sulking about my storage unit in Massachusetts. Just when I budgeted for $127 a month, they raised the rate after 3 months, "due to market conditions," to $178 a month - perhaps a bait and switch. I'm staying in what I've learned to call the summer shack, fondly, 6 miles from the beach, in a small town that reminds me of the town I grew up in, which has now become a city suburb; it's nothing like it used to be with all the development and urban sprawl.

Opportunities here are much different; there are more labor jobs than professional ones. Just when I thought I had good skill-sets and education, I can't seem to find a place for them. And, I find people to be a lot more guarded about outsiders. However, I did meet a good mechanic and his garage friends.

The earnings can be challenging, not a livable wage if you are single, and the housing market is very lean. Lots of remodels, but see paragraph below; Home Depot and tradesmen are not necessarily around the corner like they were at home.

And gas prices, yeah, that's a challenge too since any store you need to get to is always, almost an hour away. Shockingly, close to $7 for diesel, not that it affects me. However, it's still outrageous for those trying to make a living or own a business transporting, which is everywhere in this state. And food prices continue to go up, except Granny Smith apples, which are still and have been for the last 5 years, a $1.99lb, ya for me.

I really feel like I've been thrown back in time. The Summer Shack I rent is completely repurposed, and sometimes smells like it too. But as an observer, I notice why people here recycle, hoard, or repurpose. There's not much convenience here.

But, I'm grateful that I've been given this time to think about why I need and want stuff. I've packed clothes to donate and tossed personal items that serve no purpose. Luckily, there's no Target or CVS close by to spend, spend, spend, just for things that weren't making me a better person, they were just making me up.

And let's be honest, I was spending money on all the crazy things to "fix" myself when I wasn't necessarily broken, just human. Luckily for me, Amazon delivery is not overnight here; actually, count on 7-day delivery, maybe 4 if you're lucky. That means no self-help books and esoteric fixes, and not as if I have anywhere to put stuff.

I needed this space and downtime to prioritize what's important to me, relearn gratefulness, and strengthen my relationship with my spirit and myself.

For the first time in nearly 20 years, this downtime is given me the opportunity to create an installation for an upcoming art show using recycled material. Since my weekends seem longer, I can think clearly, deeply, honestly, and creatively about what's important and what I want in my life. When I work with my mentor and good friend, he poses questions that get me thinking about my future and what it looks like to me.

My heart does miss a good restaurant, Italian desserts, the gym, and live music, but the summer is almost here and there will be more time to explore.

I am taking quite a few losses right now, but also making a few gains. I'm sure I'll find a place to put roots, find my tribe, and find something to call home, it's in my heart. This transformative time will lead to a delightful ending, I know, whether here, or somewhere else across the country.