In my January post, I was writing from Uruguay about settling into a one-bedroom apartment for six months in Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay, on the Rio de la Plata, across from Buenos Aires, Argentina, to do some serious writing. Then, recently, quite without warning, I contacted my daughter, in Golden, Colorado, about a surprising new health symptom and decided to fly back to The States to make sure that this was not an escalating problem. So, I ignored my paid-in-advance-till-June, rent; and bought a one-way flight to Denver.
I had moved into this one-bedroom, half-furnished and half-painted apartment, planning to tough it out during the renovation and kitchen-equipping and even to help the new family owners decorate it to make an attractive, cozy living spot. I had even bought beautiful fabrics for curtains and a sofa coverlet. But, I´m sure that they would not want me to land on their plate with a sudden brain aneurysm if things went any further south for me. Hopefully, they can re-rent it and return my unused portion of the rent which I have paid through June.
That apartment was to be my cloistered workspace for the suitcaseful of culled journal pages that I was planning to compile into my fifth published book. However, just preliminary to this sudden brain change, I had taken my first look at this massive amount of handwritten metaphysical material and decided that I was just too tired to deal with it all. Ever! Plus, that third heavy suitcase had been a literal, real drag, all along. Impulsively, leaving the papers sorted by subject in their ziplock baggies, I stuffed them into black garbage bags. My landlord, Marcelo Monferrato and his grown son, Rocco, interupted my trip to the nearby dumpster.
Rocco, a writer, took an immediate interest in seeing what he could do with such unusual material if I, sincerely, didn´t want it. With a handshake and a recognition of a fellow-author and his true interest, I turned the bags over to him. One day, he might craft them into a book that others can read, just as my previous journals have become. At least, they have lived to see the morrow. Maybe? Which is better than a dumpster affords. It´s all up to Rocco and I may never hear of their survival. Both men speak excellent English and even though wife and mother, Virginia, speaks only Spanish, she was so sweet to me. I will miss them all. None of us were expecting this sudden conclusion. But, maybe I have spared them an even worse experience if I had become incapacitated within their property.
However, I did do the right thing to hurry home. My left brain ¨felt funny¨ and that eye seemed somewhat swollen, after an odd and invisible bump on the head . Was it a psychic ¨thunk¨ I had felt on my eyebrow? Nothing in my physical or metaphysical past had prepared me for that. So, after consulting with my best friend and experienced world traveler, Fawn Germer, in Florida, and my daughter, Jennifer, in Colorado, we all agreed that I should come home to sort my future out. It´s foolhardy to expect that warning signs might just disappear if one ignores them and sometimes the window of opportunity can be very brief. One does what one must!
My symptoms had begun to even out by the time I landed here, but Jen tells me that I was speaking and thinking more slowly than usual. We began to talk of my retirement from this freeform traveling life, however; and she put in her best computer skills to locate an attractive retirement facility for me to settle into. After that clear warning signal on my noggin, I was sincerely ready to hang up my riding boots and retire the beloved, well-worn, world-wandering saddle.
The solution is unexpectedly wonderful! She found a retirement-home dream-come-true for me. In Mexico, no less! It will be like staying permanently on the road in a foreign country and I have already filled their last available reservation which will cost approximately half of my monthly Social Security. Jennifer and I will be traveling together to get me installed in mid-March. In the meantime, we have done much communicating with the expat owners of this beautiful Lake Chapala facility and we all feel as if we´re already dear friends. I will take you with me on this new ¨staying-still stability¨ as it plays out.
Rather than initiate medical exams for this now-self-correcting eye condition, I will wait until I am settled in Mexico for the foreseeable future. Possibly, things will prove to be as simple as a new glasses prescription. I´m enough of a world traveler to realize that medicine outside of the U.S. is just as skilled and much more affordable than here. Plus, I´ll be there for follow-up, not just on-the-fly diagnosis.
Meanwhile, I have an unexpected chance to immerse myself in my own family´s home life, here in freezing cold Denver, Rocky Mountain territory, which was 74 degrees and bare ground when I landed. But has now seen many days filled with constant snowfall and very low temperatures. It was also actual summertime for me in the Southern Hemisphere so recently. But, the family hearth and loving welcome is warm and embracing and we are all sharing in the excitement of the new possibilities which Jennifer has discovered for me…possibly, just at this rare time when they have an available suite to put me in. So, I´m signed, sealed and nearly delivered by this time!
Nothing is by accident!