Ever since we made the decision to leave California and move to Missouri, I've gone through a variety of emotions. The first one was shock and surprise. It's one thing to talk about doing such a thing, and at OUR age, but it's quite another to actually DO it. And so it is that since late January I've been experiencing shock, grief, anticipation, a sense of adventure, oh no I'm NOT, more grief, and not a little fear thrown into the mix.
Having been born in and mainly raised in California, this is the world I know best. It is familiar and though I may not like its governance and its schools have spiraled steadily downward, it holds no surprises. Here I have friends in abundance and an arts culture that draws me, if not to its center, certainly, has me sitting on its fringes enjoying the view and atmosphere that feeds me.
Here I have places where I can retreat to, on a daily basis if I like, for coffee, quiet, reading, and writing. I can watch the world go on around me and there is always a friendly face saying hello, nodding as they walk by pushing strollers, walking their dogs, and generally strolling along with friends or alone, all heading to the same place for the same pleasure - coffee and companionship.
Here I have everything within a short drive. Ten minutes in any direction takes me to groceries, all manner of stores, endless varieties of restaurants, movie theaters, garden shops, a university, art galleries, a library, and boutiques. Friends, for the most part, are within shouting distance or no more than 30 minutes north or south. Even my most longtime friends and most far away get up here, or I there, at least twice a year,
But this is almost all behind me now. Our house is sold. Papers are signed. The train is about to pull out of the station. How do I best describe the feelings churning inside me? Well, I haven't boarded the train yet but it's sitting there waiting for me and I feel very much like a dog on a leash. I'm tugging and straining against the direction I'm being pulled in as I'm dragged into my future. It feels uncomfortable and, inevitable.
Taken outside of Wellington Station in Turlock, CA
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