Half a tank now seems to last forever in the Prius.
For 24 years we lived the rural life near Yosemite National Park. We loved the neighborhood and seemingly limitless space for our kids to play. We also thought our budget benefitted from the low “temptation index,” or a lack of nearby restaurants and stores.
After the kids were gone and we stopped working, we found ourselves behind the wheel for two hours to go to Target or to a movie. It was 40 miles roundtrip to Von's. We soon realized that was not how we wanted to spend our time and money.
So we moved to the city (Ashland, Oregon). We were wrong about the “temptation index.” We live steps away from almost everything, including many good restaurants. However, we eat out less often, but enjoy it more when we do. We have found lots of inexpensive or free things to do.
Now, for the cars. The Prius sat unused in the garage for the month of February. We drove the Subaru to shop in nearby Medford several times, for a total gasoline bill of $20…for the month!
So, the wallet is better off, but as for the shoes…stay tuned!
I was making coffee early Wednesday as 70-plus-an-hour winds howled outside. There was a deafening crack and crash as the building shook. What was that? Sue and I wondered.
We went out on the back deck and could see part of a tree-sized limb from a coastal redwood that had landed on our neighbor's and our roofs.
Our neighbor's home took most of the damage, but we had a four-foot gash in our roof. Our resident manager and a tree expert had the roofs cleared and patched by noon, just in time for heavy rain. Permanent repairs will come soon.
The irony was not lost on us. We lived in a rural forest area near Yosemite for 24 years and never had any damage from falling trees. Over the years, we had several huge bull pines taken down because we feared they could drop branches or more on our house.
So, we moved to Ashland for the carefree city life!
Our new Ashland home is taking shape. The kitchen cabinets went from boxes to walls quickly. The countertops will take at least two weeks.
Meanwhile, the dining room serves as a flooring storage area and makeshift kitchen.
It has been microwave gourmet, but Sue remembered today that a camping stove arrived with our stuff from Mariposa last weekend. That and a new grill will help make meals a bit more interesting for the next month or so until the kitchen and flooring are completed.
Tonight, it was time to get away from the mess and take a picnic a few steps to downtown for another Oregon Shakespeare Festival Green Show. L.A.’s Versa-Style Dance Company wowed a lively audience with an energetic hip-hop performance.
Chocolate truffle ice cream was a perfect encore!
Twenty four years worth of stuff - minus some furniture that the buyers wanted - went into storage pending a new home.
We had booked our next “carryon” expedition to Europe for May before we went to Ashland, Oregon on a discovery mission in March. It seemed like a perfect match for us and we decided to try to move this year. The Mariposa house sold so fast (escrow closed Wednesday) that we found ourselves, with help from son Brad and some great friends, moving out of our home and getting on a plane almost simultaneously.
Home free! Or homeless!? We did manage to rent a furnished condo in Ashland for when we return.
People we meet here in Scotland ask where we are from. Our answer will take some getting used to.