This morning I am glued to Facebook and the steaming video from WHNT 19, a television channel in Huntsville Alabama. Already this morning there have been tornado touchdowns in the north Alabama area and the day is only beginning. Do I really miss the weather of the southeast? Well, some days, yes, I do miss it, but today is not one of those days. Today I am enjoying a typical southeastern Arizona March day; crystal clear sky, light breeze, sunshine and temps expected to get to sixty (which is actually a bit on the cool side for this time of year).
In January I was able to repot my plants outside on my patio.
In February I was picking bouquets of pansies.
Winter can be cold here. Our first winter here (2009-10) was very cold, with too much wind and too much snow for my taste. But the subsequent two winters have been mild, with only a few very cold days and just a light dusting of snow on the Huachuca Mountains to the west of us. Spring and Fall are beautiful weather-wise and Summer here in Southeast Arizona is almost like living in the southeast, with temperatures in the 80s and 90s and a lot of moisture in the air with the Arizona Monsoon. Other areas of Arizona have more extreme weather; Tucson and Phoenix get very HOT in the summer, with days and weeks on end over 100 degrees and the northern areas of Arizona often get massive amounts of snow in the winter. So I am grateful that we live where the weather is quite pleasant most of the time, avoiding those extremes.
I can tell it is now November. We had our heating system turned on last Friday and none too soon, as Saturday morning was about 35, raining, and very windy. You could see a very light dusting of snow the topmost peak of the Huachuca Mountains.
Today there are some patches of blue here and there, as you can see in this picture:
But more of the sky looks like this:
It is only 47 degrees, with a 70% chance of precipitation. And wind. Always the wind here.
Last week was a busy and stressful one. The tenants in our mobile home back in Alabama finally vacated so that Kat could begin moving in. And there have been myriad things to change over (utilities, etc.) and repair, let alone cleaning up the trailer from the mess the tenant left! Today she gets phone hooked up, so she will at least have dial-up internet, and the furnace repair guy comes to discover why the furnace is beeping when it is turned on. They are making do with a couple of small room heaters, so hopefully the furnace repair will be done quickly and easily.
More stressful has been trying to long distance diagnose the radiator issues with the van and finding someone local to help Freddy with it. I just received a call saying the new radiator was back in and holding fluids, so that is a very good thing! May this week go more smoothly than last week!
We are planning a trip back to Alabama later this month to celebrate my Dad’s 75th birthday and to visit with family (shh … don’t tell him! It’s a surprise!! ). It has been over a year and a half since we have seen our son Charles, so I’m excited about being able to spend some time with him and his wife Rebecca. And Miss Munchkin is currently in Alabama with her Alabama grandparents, so we should be able to see her too! AND several of my siblings are making the trek to Alabama also, so I anticipate lots of family time. I am so excited about this trip!
While talking about this trip, I have noticed an odd thing. Whenever I begin to talk of going back home, I say we are going to New York, when in my mind I am picturing Alabama and I actually mean Alabama. I have noticed that I have been doing this ever since we moved away from Alabama. We moved to Alabama in 1995, lived there for twelve years, and for most of that time “going home” meant traveling to New York. But since we moved to Florida in 2007, and now here to Arizona, “going home” has meant Alabama to me, even though my brain still seems to say the words “New York.” It’s very odd and very confusing to the person I’m speaking to. “New York?” they say. “No, I mean Alabama!” I say. Obviously my brain needs to make some new pathways to my mouth, because I am definitely thinking Alabama and picturing Alabama in my mind!
I am not sure when Alabama replaced New York in my mind as “home.” I know when we made all the trips back to New York in 2000 – 2002 (5 trips in a 21-month period), that I was still going back home then. But when we made our last trip to New York in 2006, it was not home. Home then was in Alabama. And, much as I loved Tallahassee and loved living in Florida, it’s pretty obvious that we didn’t live there long enough for me to make the “mental move” as I am never referring to Florida when I speak of home. It is still north Alabama. I wonder how long I will have to live in one place before “home” becomes somewhere else. Or will Alabama always be home in my mind?
Our family takend June 2002 at my dad's.