Photo taken near Monument Valley, Utah

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Progress in PartTiming and Medical Issues

 At Grand Texas RV Resort, New Caney, Texas...

I see that I'm a little overdue for an update here in our Houston-area holding pattern.  In a week, we will celebrate five years of fulltiming, and this is the first winter we will have failed to spend either in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas or in Arizona, as we did last winter. We're grateful for those five years that were almost free of medical problems that weren't self-induced--as in our disastrous falling in Fredericksburg, Texas last year.

 The latest on Sandy's foot is the removal a few days ago of the steel pins from inside her foot that had been placed there by the surgeon after the failure of the first surgery. This was a huge relief for her, as you can imagine walking around with steel pins holding in place the bones inside your foot. We're thinking the healing will go much faster now, as the pain has decreased immensely.  

However, in probably a month's time, she will have surgery to replace her shoulder joint, and that's not likely to be very pleasant. I'm getting to be a pretty good cook and dishwasher, and it looks like my employment in these areas is not in any danger. My knee surgery will be next, but I may put that off for a while longer. We need a break, and I can still get around pretty well.

I'm not sure why our joints seem to have gone south on us all at once, but we are grateful for all the travels we've been able to do until now. We're also grateful for world-class medical care here in Houston and that we haven't contracted Covid. More positive news is that we have both had our first vaccination and will be due for the second in a couple of weeks. Hopefully, we will have dodged that awful plague, and our joint problems seem relatively minor when we think of all those who have had devastating tragedies in their lives. The best news is that, after our second vaccination, we will finally get to see our kids and grandsons! It has been agonizing to be so close by without being able to be with them. We celebrated Christmas with a Facetime connection and, while we're grateful for that technology, nothing takes the place of being there.

We have a little news about our part-timing arrangements that we've been contemplating. We have purchased a lot and adjoining building at Lone Star Corral, an Escapees Co-Op in Hondo, Texas, which is not far from San Antonio, one of our favorite Texas cities. This will allow us to have a permanent base, a second living area and a storage area, a combination we've wanted for some time. After the initial purchase, the monthly dues we'll pay to live there will be less than we were paying for storage here in Houston. The adjoining building is quite nice--fully insulated, air conditioned and carpeted with a nice storage area. We still don't know exactly what we will make of it, but I know for sure that I will finally be able to have a piano again!  When we're not there, the park rents out our RV space (not the building) and splits the proceeds--not bad! We also have good friends, Karen and Richard, who live there, and they seem to love it. 

The five years we've spent fulltiming have been pretty predictable, I would say--having made friends doing the same thing and reading the blogs of others. For the first few years, we were going like mad--in what is known generally as 'vacation' mode. Then we began to slow down and linger at the places we liked and, finally, after having seen so much of the country, we became more interested in just going to one place to spend the winter and another place to spend the summer. Finally, the prospect of having our own digs again--anywhere--became very attractive.  So, that's where we are at this point in the adventure; we know this will not be our hang-up-the-keys destination, but it will do nicely and inexpensively until we decide where to settle for good. It's a good place for part-timers, as we will certainly not be spending the summers there; Texas is too doggone hot for that. It would be a good place for the rest of the year, however.

We are not quite ready for a real house again. I've mentioned before our periods of insanity when we built or bought huge houses and then, we even built a medium-sized one, and we grew to despise the expense and upkeep of all of them. We have learned to live happily and simply in a small space, and whatever we end up with as a permanent dwelling will also be small and simple, probably in a 55+ community that is not too far from our kids. Unless you're in Florida, Arizona or the Rio Grande Valley, small homes in well-kept areas are not easy to find.

That's the latest from here in the holding pattern, and I'll post again when we have some news. Meanwhile, be careful and stay tuned! 

As I mentioned in the last post, I'll be attaching a favorite photo from our fulltime travels. This one was taken in St. George, Utah. (I'm a big fan of the desert Southwest):


                                      Thank you, Lord, for this wonderful life; 

please forgive me if I fail to appreciate it each day as I should.

We don't stop playing because we get old; we get old because we stop playing. 
 ---George Bernard Shaw

"I get up every morning, and I just don't let the old man in." ---Clint Eastwood