Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

Beautiful Day

(Charlottesville, Virginia)

My first day of freedom wasn’t really much different than normal in that I don’t usually work on Fridays anyway so I think the change for me will take a few weeks to sink in. Today, like always, I woke up around 6:00 and would have been out for a run but with the daylight waning, I waited until there was enough light to see well which at this point is 6:30 or 6:45 here.

I had heard on the radio a few days ago and just read yesterday in our weekly “what’s going on around town” paper, that this summer has been the hottest on record since 1930 with 58 days of temperatures over 90 degrees and 26 above 95. Now I know I do live in the south but Virginia is the upper south and Charlottesville is in the foothills so extremes of any kind are unusual for us.  As a result we have found ourselves rated far too frequently as the #1 Town to live in or the #1 town to retire to in multiple magazines which as I’m sure you know is the kiss of death for any sweet southern town.

Anyway, following our winter of the most snow anyone can remember containing two storms that literally shut the city down resulting in descriptions such as Snowmageddon and Snowpocolipise, climate chaos seems much more of a reality. I know folks from Minnesota will just laugh at us but we don’t have the equipment to deal with 36” of snow and heaven knows we don’t have a clue how to drive in it.

But today the 90 degree temps of just a day or so ago have disappeared along with their horrible humidity and it is just perfect in the 70’s. So it was a bit easier for me to get out for my 4.5 mile run with wake up temps in the 50’s. I have to admit that I don’t really enjoy running. I listen to books on tape while I do it to try to take my mind off of my whining. But at 5’ tall, with a deceased metabolism, it is the only way I have found to actually keep my weight down so that my sweet tooth doesn’t cause me to balloon up to 5’X5’. Nothing else seems to burn any calories in my life. Certainly not walking, or even biking although I haven’t been on a longer ride than 12 miles yet. Nor does kayaking, my upper body weight lifting or the yoga that I actually do love.

After the run, the stretching and shower that go with it, I had my summer breakfast of a fruit smoothie and set about trying to figure out how an old foggie bibliophile such as myself will possibly have enough books around to keep her in good humor. In a normal year, I read 100 books most of which I check out from the library. Now libraries don’t have a national card even if you should qualify for a  silver library card for 25 years of faithful, dedicated borrowing and paying promptly any late fees. Libraries require a local address to take the tomes off of the sacred shelves. So what to do? I can’t afford to buy everything I want to read, not even on the Kindle at $7-$10 a title for anything I haven’t already read. And besides, I honestly don’t like the kindle, I know more Luddite sounding again. But seriously, I want to turn the pages. I want to underline and make comments. To smell the ink. Don’t you really just love that new book smell?

Enough for today - more musings about getting ready to cast off tomorrow.  All advice and comments very welcome!


  1. well I stopped by after you commented on my wife's comments on our blog and I am very envious that you are starting this new life... funny how our lives are very similar (I too work for a large University in IT and due to changes my job is no longer fun).

  2. I, too, love to read!

    We have been camphosting for the summer, and the local library had no problem issuing me a card using the campground's address.

    Many fulltimers have said that there are libraries all over the country willing to issue temporary cards if you will be in an area for a while, especially in smaller towns.

    I also love to listen to audio books, and download them online using my library card issued in my hometown.

    Many campgrounds have book exchanges. You may find some books you like and then there are always rummage sales and flea markets.

  3. Hope you both will be at the April 2011 rally so we can share our mutual EX jobs and intersts.

    Heyduke, Lots of folks here who work for UVA are getting pretty disgruntled over the change in "atmosphere". What's your University?

    Thanks for the ideas Evelyn. I'd love to hear favorite authors or books from a fellow reader. I think that at first we probably will not be anywhere camphosting until we run out of the original "funds for travel" but it's good to know that when we ultimately stay somewhere long enough I may be able to get my library fix. I wish my library had audio books for downloan on line. That sounds GREAT. I'd listen to them on the drives and while I'm running when we are camped.


Your comments are the best part of this blog for me.
I LOVE hearing from you!