On Being a Snowbird

This is an unreal world, living away from a base for over two months. It’s been a little like being a floater and not touching ground. I’m an observer but not a participant. I live in a place but I’m not connected to it in meaningful ways.

There are certainly advantages to being a “non citizen.” I don’t have to feel guilty or remotely responsible for the poorly functioning local government, or the leaky shower head or the high hotel tax. I’m just passing through and have no voice, or maybe I have just a whisper.  On the road, I feel that I don’t even function as an American. I hear the news about Crimea and try to care and be worried about the deepening Cold War. But I’m even drifting over the alarm. It’s a little like I’ve taken a “Don’t Worry. Be Happy” pill.

Isn’t that the point of this “getting away?” Isn’t relaxing supposed to be like this? Am I supposed to feel, as a retired snowbird, that my civic and community concerns are behind me? I wonder if my major concerns are now about having fun, boosting the local economy, planning my daily schedule, making sure I am eating right (forget beignets?), getting some exercise and staying in touch with my friends and family.  I just counted. I’ve read 18 books since we blew out of Cleveland. It seems like a lot of time has been spent with my nose in a book.

Bead Show in Tucson or......

Bead Show in Tucson or……

At the same time, I know how fortunate I am. My questioning my purpose sounds like bitchiness. Most people would love to be in my shoes. Heck, most of the time I love to be in my shoes. I get to sleep in, avoid those nasty dentist appointments, put off the mending, leave the stubborn spot on the floor to the people hired to clean after we leave, and enjoy all the local sights and restaurants in a very leisurely way. I get to familiarize myself with a region as a person might who is thinking about moving here.  It’s a good life.

bead fence in New Orleans

bead fence in New Orleans

I get nowhere when I get into this circular thinking mode. Pretty soon it all exhausts me and my mind drifts to other things.

Is that eggs and bacon Dave is cooking for breakfast?