7:00 am It feels like I've been gone for longer than 16 days, I'm ready to go home. Instead I'm on my way to Eugene, Oregon. Traffic is resignedly moving everyone toward Seattle, the road is busy but not demanding. So my mind wanders.
7:30 am I'm settled on Sunnyside Village so no longer interested in the community in Eugene but I'll go ahead and visit. It's the thing to do - visit as many communities as you can, learn as much as you can.
8:30 am This is just nuts. I don't have a family in Wisconsin but I have a life there. I'll miss the women in my knitting group and other friends. I mean, Fox Point is a prettier city than Marysville. And Boswell Books - even if I don't go very often. I know my way around pretty well. The apartment will be smaller. I've got a primary care physician who can't be beat. No one else will cut my hair like Deb.
My mind is bubbling with reasons to not do this, things I'll miss, the disruption of moving, . . .
10:00 am It just totally sucks to be this unmoored at my age.
10:30 am Breakfast at a roadside diner in Toledo, Washington. All is once more right with world. Never make life altering decisions on an empty stomach.
11:00 am Dust swirls up from the fields as I drive by. Farmers are busy throwing away whatever remains of the top soil. Doing their part to hasten the destruction. It's all the necessary precursor to the radical change for the better that is coming.
12:30 pm "No, no A/C. Don't really need it. We have a few warm days every summer. We just open the windows. You will acclimate."
It is hot here. It's been hot here for weeks. It's going to be hot here for weeks. They all know about climate change but seem blissfully unaware that the weather is hotter. I will not acclimate, I get heat exhaustion. I need A/C or a heat pump or something.
3:30 pm I've been chatting with one of the community leaders all afternoon. Now I'm drifting off to sleep as I sit in on a marketing planning meeting. Their promotional material needs revision. Someone says maybe it's time to revisit the value statement now that membership has changed. I admire their value statement. More flexible than Sunnyside. Clearly the result of many hours of meetings, discussions, re-writes, workshops, . . .
7:30 pm Had my nap. In an air conditioned room. Now I'm sitting in a beer garden surrounded by lively conversation. There's an OK band up front, good food. I strike up a conversation with the young man to my left at the picnic table. He's from Milwaukee, lived close to where I do now. We both agree: this is way better than the beer garden in Estabrook Park back in Milwaukee.
8:45 pm Maybe I should reconsider. Eugene looks like more fun than Marysville. Livelier. A higher energy but still friendly. I wouldn't have a hard time meeting people here.
9:30 pm Back in my hotel room, running the numbers one more time. They don't change, of course. I was a pension actuary; I know that I don't have the assets or income that I'd like at this time in my life. I might be stuck in Wisconsin.
I shut my computer, play an audible book, put all this stuff out of my mind.
Tomorrow I have breakfast with another of the leaders from the cohousing community here.