Still Wondering – Why Do I Live Here?

winter spring summer fall caricature art from Why Do I Live Here column in Merrimack Valley Magazine
Art by Ken Bonin from the March/April issue of Merrimack Valley Magazine

 

Following last week’s post bemoaning my Vacation Week Blues, the opportunity to escape to sunny Florida presented itself over the weekend and I took off running.

I know I’m not alone in my melancholy. Winter has again taken its toll and I don’t even think this year has been particularly bad. I gauge how bad or how good the weather is on Oscar’s willingness to go outside to pee. Let me tell you, his refusal rate has gone up exponentially this winter. The poor little guy can’t seem to get a break. If it’s not snowing, raining, misting or brutally cold, its been outrageously windy. Of all the inclement weather Oscar must endure, wind may be the worst of it in his book.

So as I enjoyed three lovely days away from the cold, I was reminded of the column I had written for Merrimack Valley Magazine back in 2016 – excerpt below. Interesting that the timing, right around the first of March, is the same.

The funny thing is, two years later, I’m feeling less and less like New England is where I ultimately belong. Now, I’m questioning more than ever, why do I live here? I’m not particularly in love with Florida, but I have to say the weather was gorgeous each and every day I was there.

I still think California would be the best place for me – I’d brave the earthquakes and wildfires. But could I ever really pack up and move to a warmer climate?

Could you?

Matters of Life & Beth – Why Do I Live Here?

Beth Daigle on March 1st, 2016

The following excerpt is from the March/April issue of Merrimack Valley Magazine.

“Why do I live here?” is often the first thing I ask myself when temperatures dip below 40 degrees and our region is pelted with snow, rain or sleet on more days than it seems the sun will ever shine.

This winter, more than any other, I couldn’t get this off my mind. It all started on Christmas Day 2015, when not a flake of snow had fallen and it was unseasonably warm at 62 degrees. I could not have been happier. I hosted 18 family members with windows wide open and guests gathered on my screened-in porch. The sun was shining, fresh air was flowing and everyone was exuding a joyousness that, I am confident, had as much to do with the gorgeous weather as it did with the culmination of weeks of holiday preparations. I did overhear a few conversations lamenting a white Christmas. “If only we had a light dusting of snow,” someone said. I scoffed and thought: who needs it? Yes, my ski fanatic friends, I know you do, but not I — and I know I’m not alone.

I haven’t always despised winter, but have come to with age. I’m also not a big fan of New England’s hot and humid summer months. That probably has something to do with my frizz-prone curly hair. Regardless, I like the air I breathe to be warm, dry and pleasantly between 70 and 75 degrees. More than that, I like the cheerful energy that accompanies such climates. I often suggest that the West Coast would be the perfect place for me. My local friends balk and say, “Oh sure, if you like earthquakes, mudslides and wildfires.”

 I realize there are positives and negatives no matter where you live. Read more…

 

 

 

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While I’m a blow-in to New England, my family is here now. We looked at moving to what presumably might be a warmer climate and less snow-filled environment (Arlington, VA and Memphis were on the list), but ultimately and recently purchased a condo locally. Why? Well right at the moment as we are looking at yet another Nor’easter bearing down, I’m having another bout with second guessing this decision. Condo living helps; at least we can now forego the shoveling.

kiki

I pride myself on being a native New Englander! That being said, as I grow older and my children start to set down their own roots, I’ll be more willing to consider a move in order to be closer to them.

We live here because we have family, friends and deep roots. There are so many places that have a gentler climate but native New Englanders have character. We may be hard to get to know but once you connect here it’s deep and fulfilling, even with the snow. When the snow falls we cook, gather, sip wine and do projects. When spring comes we dance in the streets and flock to the beach and plant our gardens knowing the luxury of the sun is fleeting and not to be taken lightly! I love to travel but adore my Massachusetts home.

Mark

Charleston, SC….’nuff said!