Sunday, January 03, 2021

New Year, New Everything

Good Morning, Viet Nam! It has been over three months since I last posted - the most ever since this blog's inception. I can't say there was a specific reason for it. Perhaps it was just weariness with COVID-19, nasty political discourse or frustration/depression with the lack of activity on my house while it was for sale.

Midway through October, I sent my realtor the  required 30 days notice that I was ending my listing agreement with him. Coincidentally (or not), viewings of the house increased. Of course (u see), it might have also been due to the most recent reduction in price I made. As Thanksgiving was coming near, it certainly appeared that I would be spending another cold winter in Illinois and would likely have to postpone Arizona dreams until spring. However, a couple who had seen the house twice requested to see it a third time. Then it finally happened: THE OFFER! Although we would have preferred to have sold our house when its worth was higher, we accepted the bid and quickly began preparing for our next steps.

My wife, who had just come back from spending two weeks in Arizona visiting her best friend, was home a week before flying back out to find us a house to rent. Meanwhile, we had to start preparing for a move that would be taking place before Christmas. Packing up after being in town for 26 years was quite an ordeal. We were selling things, giving things away, and throwing out what we could bear to live without. We had our belongings loaded on a semi truck and driven to Arizona for us, prepared our house for sale, rented an SUV, and began the 1,600+ mile trip with our cat and our dog. 

We decided to take three days for the trip. The first night, we stayed overnight in Tulsa in a hotel overlooking the Hard Rock Casino. Of course I had to play some slots there. I came out a winner, which was a great sign. The second night we stayed in Albuquerque and had dinner and a delightful evening with a friend for the early 1990's and his wife. On the third day, we made it to our new location in the Phoenix area.

We have now been here more than two weeks. It really feels like much longer. One of the first things I did was buy myself a new car as I had sold our junky old van to an auto salvage shop as one of the last acts before we left Illinois. My family in Arizona paid for people to unload our truck (a fantastic gift!). We still have boxes in the house and garage, but we are working on things. Adapting to 60 degree weather in December has not been a problem. Ice and snow are coming down in central Illinois, but that is no longer our issue.

As we have been very busy with setting up our house and the holidays, I have only been to the Arena Poker Room at Talking Stick Resort four times so far. However, that has resulted in three winning sessions and one in which I came out even. There are some sweet promos at The Stick, and playing there has so far been really fun.

The next few weeks should provide more of the same: furnishing/setting up the house, taking care of boxes and playing poker. I have a birthday coming up in a few weeks, and am likely going to take a weekend trip to Las Vegas before the month is over and hit up some poker rooms with ZetusLarry.

I have been somewhat away from social media with the move and all, but am still alive and kicking -- and enjoying my  new version of retired life in Arizona.

A belated Merry Christmas/Happy Hanukkah/Happy New Year to everyone! Let's hope COVID-19 can begin to disappear sooner rather than later and that we can begin living whatever our new normal lives  will be.

Thanks for reading!