So, I'm sitting here in New England "enjoying" a typical New England Summer. It's about 90 degrees and 100% humidity. There's something about air that you can chew. I just don't like it. But I love summer. Go figure. Well, it's really easy to figure out. The rest of the year is mainly snow. We pray for hot weather. When the sun comes out we ask each other, "What is that strange bright object in the sky?"
We used to have something called "Spring." It's now a distant memory. Instead of that lovely, graceful period of 70 degree days and crocus and daffodil plants in bloom we have more snow. And melting. And mud. Spring was on a Thursday this year. If you blinked, you missed it.
I reside (notice I don't call it living) in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. It would be more aptly called the Commonpoverty of Taxachusetts. Everything is more expensive here than almost anywhere else. Those of you who live in NYC, anywhere in CA, Hawaii, and possbily Chicago will understand what I mean when I say "expensive." Take health insurance. It's mandatory here and it's not wise to be without it even if it weren't. In order to get a "group" plan to save money, I had to join Small Business Service Bureau for which I have absolutely no use. I have a lousy HMO for the bargain price of $710. a month. I can get exactly the same plan from the same company for even more money if I join The Author's Guild. No joke.
If I lived in the next town on either side of me I'd save hundreds of dollars in car insurance. But I don't. So I can't. In the winter someone has to plow my driveway. He charges $25. per pass. That means that one storm can easily cost $100. In the Summer I have to pay someone to mow the lawn. I'm envious of my friend in New Mexico whose house came with an artificial lawn. I couldn't help myself. I immediately began to mentally calculate the savings in lawn mowing fees. And for someone who is totally right-brained, that was an amazing accomplishment. And I didn't think twice about it! The oil bills to heat the house are mind-boggling, even with the heat turned off for the Summer.
No one can understand why I want to move out of Massachusetts. The culture! The arts! It's all here. And most of us can no longer afford to attend any of it. Sad but true. I grew up with my mother pushing my baby carriage through Boston's Museum of Fine Arts, taking me to the ballet, concerts, theatre. I love it all. And even though I'm right here, I miss it all. I can no longer afford the high ticket prices, the parking fees, and we're not even talking about the cost of gas to drive into the City or dinner beforehand, or even just coffee afterwards.
Forgive my late-night musings on life in this new Century. It's going to mean some major changes for me at some point. I think I'll know "home" when I see it and it's gotta be cheaper than here! And sooner rather than later.
Causes Darlene Arden Supports
The Marcia Polimer Abrams Fund for Canine Behavior Studies at the AKC Canine Health Foundation