Tuesday, May 1, 2012
Why I Am Moving
"Why did you move?" This question from one of my readers appeared as a comment on my last post. I'd been asking myself the same thing all day. Standing alone on the empty beach under a gray sky with the man who loves me sixty-five miles away, how could I not ask that question?
I tallied up the reasons on the walk home and have been going over them for the last day and a half.
1) My eighty-eight-year-old mom is coming to live with me, and would have trouble managing the four-story "tower house" floor plan of my current place.
2) I've wanted to live by the water ever since I was 11 or 12 years old, goofing around outside my friend Kim's house with her skateboard and her transistor radio playing The Beach Boys "Little Surfer Girl." I'd already caught the wave that included Elvis's "Blue Hawaii," and the Gidget movies. By the time the Gidget TV show aired, California was mine--if only inside my head. When I finally moved to L.A. from the midwest a decade later, I couldn't imagine how I ended up so far from the ocean.
3) I have more than 35 years of memories in Los Angeles. Nearly everywhere I've been in L.A. is someplace I've gone with The Someone. The narrative runs through my head constantly. I'd need some sort of lobotomy to stop it.
4) Downsizing was okay. It was good in many ways, in fact. But despite the fact that buying a bigger place seems misguided at almost 60, I want to gather those people I love and enjoy to my heart and to my hearth. I think I have some talent for this. I have three children and three grandchildren. I hope to have more (grandchildren, that is.) I am serious when I say I want house guests. I hope my grandchildren will come for a long stretch of each summer because I think parents need a break whether they realize it or not.
5) It's cooler here. I'm wearing a wool sweater right now.
6) There are blue herons and pelicans, and other birds I haven't yet learned the names of.
7) I have a boat dock here. I lived in a house with a boat dock until I was five years old. We had a pontoon boat, and a row boat, and a motor boat. I like boats. I need to learn something new. Kayaking seems like a good thing to learn.
8) About half of my L.A. friends have moved away. Others are planning on it. The rest live across town, and I seldom see them anyway.
9) The traffic in L.A. keeps getting worse. The smog is still bad--even though every year, they say it's not as bad as it used to be.
10) I had to move somewhere. Really, I did. It's not that far from L.A. There are trains--Amtrak, Metrolink. You could even come here by boat. If you had one.