Monday, April 26, 2010

Enjoy Where You Are

I drove from Houston to Baton Rouge on Friday, just me and crazy dog Sadie, and I had a lot of time to think. Staring out the window at 70mph at nothing but fields and fields of fields, on a road I've driven many times before. Needless to say, the mind did wander. This is part of my wanderings.

Point of view.
When you travel to different cities or countries you notice all the differences from where you live. The cultural differences, the environmental differences, and just subtle life differences. When you are traveling or visiting a place they are just curiosities. Things you observe. The money might be different, the food is different, the way people dress is different. It is nice to be able to see these things and experience them. Then you go back home and maybe for a day you realize that where you live has it's own idiosyncrasies and home may look different to you for day or two but then things are normal again.

When you live in another city or country you "live" the differences. Initially those one dollar coins and two dollar coins cause you to think a little more when paying for things or getting change. Those kilometers make you convert to miles to know how far it is to where you are going. The fact that the temperature is in Celsius degrees causes you to never know what the "real" temperature is. Then gradually you start to understand these things and live them day to day along with everything else that defines where you are living.

The topography and foliage that looked so different when you first arrived now looks completely normal to you and looks like "home". Gradually you get used to seeing the sights and the people around you and it is your life. You automatically go for the loonie or the toonie when paying in cash. You know what the temperature is and how far things are when you read Celsius and kilometers. Just by the living day to day you adopt the pace around you, whether is is faster or slower than where you lived before. Where you live becomes home after a while and your former home becomes a place you visit.

Moving back "home" has been interesting. I see things with slightly different eyes this time. While everything is so familiar, which is comforting, it is also a bit foreign. It is like getting to see through the eyes of a visitor. It will all be normal soon enough, but for the last 2 weeks I've been able to appreciate what Houston and Sugar Land look like and feel like to a visitor. Everything is so big and on such a grand scale here. I feel like I need to learn how to dress again. The style is much flashier and colorful here than in Toronto. The pace is much faster, or it just seems everyone is so busy here. And the dollars are paper not coins!Scenery that was common place before now looks new and interesting to me. I have not just come back from a vacation, I have come back from another life. I don't have that day or two of re-acclimation that you get after a vacation, I have that "it's all new" viewpoint. I get to see the place I lived before in an new light, one that is familiar yet foreign. I hope I can see things through these eyes for a long time because it is nice to not take the beauty and vastness for granted.

Every place has it's beauties, it would be nice if we could all appreciate the beauty each place has to offer without taking it for granted like we do when we live somewhere and see it everyday. Enjoy where you are!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

A "3 hour tour"

Today TJ and I decided to go for a drive. It turned out to be a "3 hour tour". Texas is very big! We only covered a tiny part of it today. We went in search of the Texas bluebonnet, and we found them!

Our first encounter was this guy in the convertible though. I can't decide if his partner threw him out and that is all he picked up on the front lawn or if he rented a truck and they gave him this. I think it is pure genius to shrink wrap everything to insure it won't fall on the road. Hahaha! You should have seen the front seat, it was full of stuff too and only room for the driver. Genius.

We did manage to find many fields of bluebonnets and some very classic Texas countryside. Enjoy the pictures.

There was one casualty. After I knelt in a field of bluebonnets to get my picture taken by TJ, I got up and looked down at my legs and one of my knees was covered with fire ants! I quickly brushed them off but it was too late....the damage was already done. Yes, over 30 bites on one knee.....much swearing was done on my part. Bugs....!!! I am beginning the hate them! I may not be kneeling at church tomorrow.

The icing on the cake was found at our last stop in Wallis, TX. In a local gas station we came across these horseback riders. It is Earth week next week, maybe they were just being "green". No fill up needed! Yes, Virginia, you are really in Texas now. The cherry on the top was that there was a police car in the gas station too but he pulled away before I could snap the picture. He pulled right up to my car, the one with the Texas lisence plate and got out of the car to tell us that my inspection sticker was expired! Well, we just moved here from Canada a week ago! He asked, "to Wallis?"....definitely not! "Ok, well, better take care of that soon." Thank you! I drove around Canada for 2 years with Texas plates and one week in Texas and I get stopped for an expired inspection sticker....welcome home girl!

Friday, April 16, 2010


A few noteworthy observations since moving back to S'Land.

There are many women of leisure. I noticed this as I went to meet a friend for lunch, there are many more women who have the time and inclination to "do lunch". I'm not talking about a business lunch here either. Just lunch. Yours truly included. I realized that I did not "do lunch" when living in Toronto unless I had a visitor from out of town, and just to be clear, I love "doing lunch". Most of my friends were working or just plain too busy to "do lunch". TJ says that it is because it costs so much less to live here and everyone does not have to work. Maybe it was just a beautiful Friday afternoon and everyone decided to go out to lunch and enjoy the lovely spring day (yes, we sat outside and it was lovely).

Which brings me to another observation. EVERYTHING is so much cheaper and more available. Sticker shock in reverse for me. Not complaining at all, I love to shop. I feel like this week we have single handedly done our part in the economic stimulus plan. We left all of our appliances in our house in Toronto, so we have had to purchase a new fridge, washer and dryer and are still living without a microwave (how do we do it??). And a new used car... since we left TJ's old truck in Canada. I'd say that was stimulating enough for one week!

One week in and 85% of the boxes (that will be unpacked) are unpacked. You go girl! More visitors to the house in one week than in one, maybe two, months in former home. Gee but it's nice to be back home. Chamber of Commerce weather, meaning breezy, 70's, bearable humidity and more sunshine than rain. Plenty of outdoor excercise happening around here, it's a good thing. AND I ran into my first cockroach in 2.2 years! Yes, I was momentarily taken aback. This southern girl, who's job it was to kill the suckers in college, was taken aback when I ran into the "bug" on my stairway. After I made him (because I am sure they are all male) smile for the camera, I smacked him with my shoe. Note to self, call exterminator tomorrow!

So it goes. Re-entry is going well for the most part. I still miss the fresh air blowing though the screens into my house and the little village of Port Credit that was home for the last 2 years. Relocation is relocation no matter where it is to or where it is from. You will always miss something and always be glad to explore something new.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

I Guess We Will See About That

Before we moved I was re-reading some old posts on my blog and came across this one written in March of last year. Close to the same time of year that we left Toronto this year. At the time we had no idea we would be heading back so soon. Watch out what you wish for just may come true. So here is an bit from that post.

Aside from the stark contrast between spring up here and spring down there, my visit was a great one. I just loved visiting friends and relatives. At one point while I was driving about 75mph on the freeway I had a thought that I could easily slip right back into my life in Houston. Yup, except for the weather ( and mildew, frizzy hair and profuse sweating it produces) it isn't such a bad place. I think the fact that I have friends and relatives there may have something to do with it.

We have now moved into our house and I must say it is a lot easier coming back to a place where you are a citizen and especially back to a place you have lived before. I actually know my way around town. I know where to buy groceries, hardware, appliances, and the thousand other things I need to get the house up an running. I still have my bank account from when we lived here before, so that was easy. The rules are the same as they used to be, i.e. recycling. I even have friends and family here. And that Texas license plate that I never changed when we moved is now the right plate! Whoo hoo.

After my dreading missing out on spring, I will reluctantly admit that the last week has been some of the best weather they get here in Houston. The flowers are blooming all over the place and the trees are full of leaves, the breeze is gentle and not too cool and not too hot. Actual patio weather, hurry....go outside and enjoy it while you can!

As far as the house and the move. I am so glad we got rid of sooo much stuff when we moved to Toronto and during our time there. Between the stuff that we sent to the farmhouse and the JUNK that we got rid of over the last 2 years, it has been the easiest move so far. This does not mean that I have everything unpacked by a long shot, but the task does not seem as daunting. I have a lot more junk to get rid of believe me. Moving is a great way to prioritize what is important and what you can live without for 2 years or for that matter for 6 years. Just throw it out, donate it or sigh....bring it to the farmhouse.

Promise to get pictures out soon but for now, picture a lovely house with many boxes in it and stuff not really put where it will ultimately live for the next however long we are here. Gotta go sit outside now.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Under construction

I think my blog will have to be under construction next week. We have moved to Sugar Land, Texas and are waist deep in boxes. Stay tuned for updates and being in my head while I re acclimate to life in the south.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...