I was sitting here thinking about this past year and wondering just how different it was from previous years. I am not just talking about the Covid pandemic as we all know how much that has impacted our everyday lives and the lives of our family and friends but all of our lives in general.
The year started off with Covid just beginning to break and little did we know how big an impact it would have but as the year progressed, it became apparent that this was going to turn into a full blown pandemic that would affect us all, young and old alike. It has changed us from doing what we have been regularly doing for the past few decades into a nation split by its beliefs. Those in charge who know about these things have either suggested or in a lot of cases, imposed restrictions on our way of life that most of us find very difficult and annoying to adhere to. Among those are having to wear a mask whilst out in public and trying to stay six feet away from others. It has also led to the closure of many shops and restaurants, bars and gyms and the like. Personally, I am all for these measures even though I find mask wearing uncomfortable mainly because my glasses fog up. I have no problem breathing through one and when my friend and I go hiking together and because we are from different households, out of respect for each other, we keep our masks on. Why take the chance?
There are many who take the opposite stance and insist that imposed mask wearing is an infringement on their personal rights and liberties and although they are entitled to their views on the matter, it seems pretty stupid to make such a complaint when it can save not only your life but maybe that of an elderly relative. Why would you want that on your conscience knowing that your disagreement with what you perceive as an infringement on your liberties has just caused the death or serious illness to your grandmother or grandfather or others within your family. Is it worth it?
Covid -19 has changed the way we live for the immediate future and probably the next couple of years until the majority of the Nation has been injected and we have built up a herd immunity and even then, we will still need to be very careful.
For myself, this year had been very different in many ways. I got interested in RV’s and had the urge to buy one which as it happened was not quite the success that I had anticipated that it would be. To put it bluntly, I in my usual way of doing things, made decisions that ended up costing me several thousands of dollars. On the other hand, I am now the proud owner of a 2018 Jayco Eagle Fifth wheel Travel Trailer that I absolutely love. Along the way, I had to purchase, albeit new to me, a 2016 model F250 King Ranch diesel truck to haul this new trailer around as my F150 Ford truck was just not powerful enough. So I have ended the year having a small mortgage to pay for these expensive items, as opposed to the one that I had paid off on my “sticks and bricks” home, years ago. The plan is to sell the home and move into the RV full time driving around this great country until such times that I am either a danger to myself or heaven forbid, a danger to others which would then cause me to settle in one place.
Selling this house that I have lived in for these past thirty five years will not be easy. Oh, the practicalities of the actual selling is pretty straight forward even though there are what appears to be several train loads of pots and pans, dishes, furniture, tools, broken down mowers, clothes and other miscellaneous items that I have collected over the years that at the time, was an invaluable piece of property. Now, not so much. Not to mention an entire small greenhouse worth of plastic pipe fittings and parts along with other items used on pond building and maintenance. I think I will turn it all over to one of those auctioneering companies that specialize in that sort of thing and they can handle it all including cleaning the empty house for presale. I do not want to be around when any this finally happens for obvious reasons. Too many memories both good and bad. Some painful, others not so much but the majority very happy ones.
Then there are what were five ponds that have now been reduced to three as I have dismantled the small one and am in the process of shutting down the smallest of the four remaining ones. Shutting down entails moving large limestone rocks that have both grown in size and weight over the years. Some, I can no longer lift even though I placed them in the first place. Those, I have pushed into the pond to act as fill. Funny how you grow weaker as you get older. I hate wasting good rocks but I will not have further use for them in the future. The hole that remains will need to be filled with dirt and I will get the landscape company that I use to complete that work. The rest of the rock that I can still move has been moved to form a rock cairn covering the spot where at least fifteen dogs and cats that were my friends in previous years and for them, previous lifetimes, are all buried. I will not tell the people that eventually buy the house but there are at least eight or ten other spots around the garden where other dogs and cats are buried. I was very fortunate that I had a lot of pets and I have had twenty five or so dogs and numerous cats in the time spent living in this house these past thirty five years. There was even a horse that grazed the yard for fifteen of those years but he is not buried there and only because I could not dig a hole big and deep enough in the Texas limestone rock.
There will be lots of memories to take with me and a lot of sadness to go along with it. I was very happily married for seven of those thirty five years until suddenly for her, the grass was greener elsewhere. I spent the next twenty eight years a confirmed bachelor albeit a very unwilling one with my main friends apart from the people that I knew or played soccer with, dogs, cats and Zippo the horse. Not one bit a lonely life as they provided most of the company that I needed. I still had a lot of human friends but as time went by, I have grown into a bit of a recluse preferring my own company. Happens when you grow old I guess.
Here we are at the end of this very difficult year with just a few short days to go. Will this be the last Christmas and New Years that I spend here? If everything works out the way I want it to, the answer is definitely “Yes”. Then me, Mikey and Sandy, my two little dogs will hit the road. Will the Covid-19 virus be cleared up in this upcoming year, I really and truly hope so but have my doubts.
Who knows what is in store for us as we come to the end of this very strange year. For myself, my plans are all set and I can only hope that things work out. For those of you that I have met or have known over the years or are currently still in my circle including those of you that I have never met that follow and read my blogs, please take care and look after yourselves and your loved ones. For the rest of you in the world, stay safe and Happy New Year.