You may be wondering how I'm adjusting to life now that I'm back in the "city." Now, "city" is a relative term, right? I mean, Winchester is a "city" when compared to Bigfork, Montana but in comparison to New York City? Not so much.
So far, so good, is the answer. This small city has everything I need and I can easily travel from here. I just bought a RT ticket to Seattle for $280. Always a $400 minimum to get out of Montana, it seemed like, and usually? It was more like $600. Many, many business trips to Miami I would sit in Salt Lake City airport and think, "Fourteen hours. I may as well be in FRANCE by now." But I'd just find myself, after a 4:00 a.m. alarm buzz, hot and disgruntled in Miami at midnight.
And, of course, I definitely appreciate having conveniences close-to-home. No more 40 minute trips to the grocery store. There are old people at my gym, but they do a better job of keeping their clothes on in the locker room. Standing next to some off-season Dixieland college cheerleaders make Silver Sneaker nudity seem like a really bad idea. The Spin instructors have an actual plan for the workout vs. an hour of mindless chatter and Jimmy Buffet's greatest hits.
But living here has its own challenges. When things go bad in the refrigerator, I can't just go out on the deck and hurl it into the woods like I used to do. I have to put it in a bag, tie it up, put it outside in the can, then move the can on the RIGHT day, at the RIGHT time, and wait for some disgruntled motherfucker to come and pick it up. And if I don't put it in the RIGHT place or have it organized the way the trash guys like it, they'll just leave it there. In all it's odor. For another week.In the hot, hot sun.
And because these old houses are tightly packed together, I've got neighbors. New and different after having 10 acres in rural Montana. The people next to me "Wake and Bake" pretty much every day; the smell of pot wafts in to the dining room through my air conditioning unit. No wonder the White Kitty is so hungry. No wonder he's gained so much weight. Dude across the street never wears a shirt, but this isn't SO bad, because he's reasonably fit for his age and tan from working in the garden. Dude next door? He doesn't wear a shirt - but he really, really should.
And the smell of hot dog shit on the sidewalk in front of my house. Someone has been leaving Labrador-sized deposits in the twelve inch scrap of grass between our sidewalk and the street. I put up a sign in the window that says, "You Know." Just something I took home after a performance by Lars America Jan in Los Angeles but I thought it might do the trick. Um...no.
So I took it up a notch. On days I work at home I watch people with dogs go by. One day, a man with two big dogs stopped at my scrap of grass. I ran to the door, whipped it open, gave him the stink eye but didn't say a word. He moved on. I thought that might do the trick. Um....no. Dragging my trash out this morning, there was a fresh pile.
Contemplating next steps.