Over My Shoulder~

2013.  Here we go!  One more year under our belts as Happily Homeless.  Not for the faint of heart, folks.  This life we’re leading can look pretty exotic from the outside, I fully realize that, but I’m owning up to the fact that it gets tiring at times, in spite of the  hotel stays, and no job to have to go to. We’re living the words of America the Beautiful  and yes, it does make for excitement.  I think of all the cool stuff, and I’m torn.  Keep traveling or settle down?

We’ve seen those spacious skies-IMG_7525

 Amber waves of grain-IMG_7185Purple mountains majesty-IMG_7345

We’ve been from the Atlantic to the Pacific.  This year we had, again, the joy of connecting with family throughout the country, renewing bonds that had grown lax over the years. We had the chance to see our grandson on his last day of school, and, right before we left Vermont, accompany him on his first day of 5th grade.  In between we hiked mountains, rode the rides at country fairs, watched our grandson learn to sail on Lake Champlain, hosted sleep overs and swims in the hotel pool, painted our faces like butterflies, and made memories that will be in our hearts forever.pizap.com13570917955681 We connected with family again-that was one of my favorite parts of this year!

pizap.com13570935153611We said goodbye to a dear friend-that was hard.  We miss knowing that you’re here on this earth with us, Baker Mike.IMG_1377

Handsome Husband and I were proud to meet my dad in DC for his Honor Flight.   We visited battlefields, forts and monumentsManassas, Saratoga, Ft Union,- and were hosted by our daughter’s in-laws. (I’ve had discussion with numerous people as to what exactly to call that relationship and the one I love best is that they, Sam and Angie, are, simply, part of our tribe.  I like that.  Except maybe I’ll say clan instead, seeing as I come from Scottish stock.) IMG_6219I pushed my boundaries on a zip line, accepting a double-dare from the friend who is so close to my heart as to really be my sister. (And we all know that it just isn’t done to refuse a double-dare!)  Yep, I took a breath and jumped~IMG_3751But, dear readers, if I’m being honest here, there are moments, amidst all of this, where Handsome Husband and I think “Is it time to settle down?”  Arizona has been steady ground under our feet for the past 3 months, and there is so much to do here, (hiking, belly dance, hooping, family dinners, the list is endless!) and so much that I’ve grown interested in, and so we do think sometimes, that maybe its time. There are so many things I want to do still-my idea of retirement and Handsome’s, are clearly two different things!  It’s a twist in me:  after having seen so many friends and family, I wonder, how much am I missing those permanent ties of staying in one place?  And the next second I think, well, if we were to settle down, it wouldn’t be possible to see everyone as often as we do now, by traveling. A conundrum, that’s what it is!  And, fortunately, one that doesn’t need an immediate decision.

So, in the meanwhile, we’re open to new travel and new opportunities as we step into this new year. What lies around the corner?  Next month will see us headed towards California for a few months,  a return to Arizona for the birth of our grand-baby, then New Mexico for a family wedding.  East again.  Its will be a full year, and then, of course, there’s always the unexpected that jumps into the middle of plan making of any sort.  Life is open in front of us!

What do you think?  Settle down?  Continue traveling?


2 thoughts on “Over My Shoulder~

  1. Good morning from the “oh-so-cold” MidWest!

    Your continuing question of “Should we settle or should we continue traveling?” is always one you will ask yourselves. Maybe you should put that question into a quantitative subset:
    (1) Have you exhausted all the Federal Parks or State Parks?
    (2) Have you thought about changing up the travel plans with a “purpose”? Maybe the “purpose” should be helping a public service organization like Habitat for Humanity, or Disaster Relief in one of our many states after Hurricanes, tornadoes, fire or floods..
    (3) Yes, Alison, you have done a zip-line, but what about doing a Montana or Wyoming 1880’s style wagon excursion or helping on a working cattle ranch?
    (4) Have you went rattlesnake hunting in Sweetwater, Texas?
    (5) Have you visited both geographical centers of the United States and the North American continent?
    (6) Have you traveled the entire Route 66 highway from East to West?
    (7) Have you been to the Walking Horse Celebration in Shelby, TN or the Kentucky Derby in Louisville, KY or Cheyenne Days in Cheyenne, WY or participated in a buffalo round-up in Montana or Nebraska or a wild horse round-up in the Wind River, WY area?
    (8) Have you put your toes, or your whole body, in all 5 Great Lakes and shot the rapids of the St. Lawrence River?
    (9) Have you been to Padre National Seashore south of Corpis Cristi, TX to see the only spot that black headed seagulls are native to?
    (10) Have you traveled the Great River Road from the headwaters of the Mississippi in Minnesota to the final destination of the Gulf Coast south of New Orleans?
    (11) Have you followed Lewis and Clark’s expeditionary route from St. Louis to their final wintering ground by Astoria, OR?
    (12) If you are interested in Shakespeare, you could map out all the Shakespearian Festivals held nation-wide and make it the Summer’s goal to attend as many as possible!

    If you have exhausted all of those, I can supply you with another whole list!! If money gets tight for lodging, I might even be able to set you up with friends or relatives in some of the states that would be willing to provide a bedroom for a night or two or three… free of charge! That includes our home 18 miles east of St. Louis, MO!

    Happy trails!

    Vicki Gowen

    • Vicki,
      Interesting you write of “a purpose” for our travels. Since we started, I’ve given thought to a theme, so to speak, that we can have. You had some very cool suggestions, and I’m going to keep them in mind. I love the idea of doing a wagon excursion, especially since Chuck and I are so keen on the history of the West. I can tell you right out, though, and I’ve already made clear to Chuck, that the rattlesnake hunting thing IS NOT going to happen-snakes give me the heebie-geebies, much like they did Indiana Jones! We have been to the geographical center of the US, but not the continent, and have discussed a few times doing Rt 66 from beginning to end.

      I love your list!! And, just so that we can meet, at some point Chuck and I just might meander out your way. There’s so much history we want to explore in MO, including the Pony Express. So, keep your eyes peeled for us-we’ll let you know when we’re headed your way.

      And, I love that you’re reading my blog-it means so much to me~
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

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