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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Living in Paradise

Mount Rainier
I’ve lived in a couple of places around the country where I actually thought I might want to return someday to retire to.  Not everyone reasons like I do, and that is good, they say variety is the spice of life.  What a boring place society would be if we all thought alike.  When you live long enough (long enough is in the eye of the beholder) you should be entitled to a little more consideration for your participation (if not out of respect for the grey hair, perhaps for your experience).  It stands to reason that the longer you live the more you learn, the more you learn the better you live, the better you live the longer you live, and the cycle continues.
The topic of my posting today is all about living in the ideal place.  Once again we all have what we would consider ideal living conditions.  The first consideration that should go out the window is jobs.  When you are retired and living on a pension your consideration doesn’t have to be about the perfect environment for earning a living.  Personal health conditions should probably be top on the list of considerations.  Your needs for health reasons should take into consideration, heat, cold, rain, snow, and even dry and dusty conditions.
My considerations are the following; I don’t want to live in an area of the country where I might find myself rebuilding my life overnight.  I’m talking about natural disasters. I consider myself at an age where I don’t care to start over from scratch.  I want to avoid as much as possible, earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, sinkholes, floods, landslides, and windstorms, and fire hazards.
One of the areas that I thought I might want to retire to was Santa Cruz California, and then there was the strong and devastating earthquake of Loma Prieta 1989. The earth had not yet stopped shaking and I had already crossed Santa Cruz from my top place to retire to.  Life in Santa Cruz is definitely a type of paradise to live in.  If it hasn’t changed over the years Santa Cruz is mostly known for its 17 State Beaches for recreation.  I imagine that I could not afford the property that I lived in back then. 
I remember weekends where I was totally drained of energy from all the hours I spent playing out in the sun.  Not much of a choice, everything and anything done outdoors was under a very nice and bright sunshine.  My maturity has finally taught me that sunshine is pretty much like chocolate, you can only take so much for so long before you decide that you have had all you can handle or want.  The only people likely to disagree with me would be the people that are very young, or have never had all the sunshine they can handle.
I am very happy to live in the Northwest corner of the United States, where everything is handed out in moderation except maybe the cloudy skies, and at times rain.  If you are lucky to have some decent resources, you can always get away for a little sunshine when it gets to you, about once a year.  The Western side of the State of Washington is more moderate than the climate of the Eastern side of the State.  During the summer if you want some serious hot weather, you can always go play golf in the Yakima Valley with temperatures in the 100 plus degrees.
When it comes to my golf game I’ve always said that I play in the 70’s, and it usually gets me noticed.  Unfortunately I follow it with any hotter than that and I refuse to go out.  The Northwest is so weather friendly that you can be at the beach or the mountain pass and even a little higher if you want to see and feel the snow year round within a 90 minute drive from Seattle.  I’ve been in the Northwest most of my life; I’ve been to many places outside of Washington, but I always return home.  The best is yet to come….

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