March 03, 2022

The Mind Is Restless

You would think after 10 months, give or take a few weeks, I would finally feel like this is home since my move last May. Honestly it has not. I remember before June 2019, when I would pull into the driveway of the small rural house I lived in with the hounds, it would feel like I was home. That is one reason I did not move for 22 years when I could have any time. I'll warn you, there will be some rambling in between the photos today. In the meantime it was a beautiful day here yesterday, temps reaching 75°, and my head and face showing a little sunburn this morning.

It was probably a little after 10am when I walked outside, turned my chair facing the sun and acquired some good natural Vitamin D. The hounds and the dog moved to different spots to soak up the sun's heat, take a nap or play in the yard. After a while I finally realized I needed to get inside or at least put a hat on to protect me from the sun. It will be like that again today but about 15° cooler.

In the past when my mind got restless I would spend "my life" on cars dot com, autotrader dot com or car gurus dot com. I spell out those websites because I don't want their links in this post. But I would spend days looking at different cars and trucks I had interest in. Then most of the time I would make a deal and park a new or a new "used" vehicle in the driveway. Luckily that stopped last fall after I bought my old Z4 back after selling it a few years ago and I have an FJ that I am happy with.

The problem now for that restless mind has been something more expensive, a much bigger purchase amount as well as a much bigger decision. See moving isn't easy even though the past two moves have seemed very easy to me and both were cross country moves. Luckily in both cases the houses sold and the houses bought officially closed at the title company about the same time, within days of each other. It felt normal to me but agents that I have talked to since tell me I was really lucky for that to happen.

So in that case I have always asked, "where do the hounds, the dog and I stay if two house deals did not close about the same time"??

That photo of the hounds and the dog staring at me was from Monday afternoon around 1:30pm local time. They all were reminding me it was time for their lunch and I needed to get out of my chair to feed them. They know exactly when meal time is, although those times are somewhat strange. Those times were changed to what they are now by Stella years ago, over five years ago.

So back to the story ... I admit from the time I moved into this house, I have always looked at houses for sale in certain areas I have either lived in before, considered moving to back in 2018 or just in general to see what the market is like. I use Zillow sometimes just to use their map feature, removing the boundary then moving the location around to see what pops up for sale.

I use Realtor dot com for my go to house search. The big reason is it will show when houses go on contract with a "contingent" or "pending" label almost immediately. Where some houses on Zillow are not updated and when I plug that address into Realtor it will be "off the market". I also click the heart making it red for those listings I want to save, adding those to my favorites list. Some of those are/were on contract within 24 hours after the ad was posted.

So what is it? What makes my mind so restless, where it feels like sometimes I could wake up tomorrow morning and move anywhere of interest just like that??? That is the million dollar question. I have talked about it with friends via email, phone calls and even in person. ALL of them can't understand why I would want to move from what I have. The current location is perfect for me, the cars, the hounds and the dog. Life is easy again but at the same time boring again.

I feared it would happen when I considered the move last spring. I remember facing myself in the mirror and telling myself if I stopped riding my bike this move would be a complete failure. Bike riding is what made me healthier, happier and life was not boring. Hiking the Huachuca's or out by the San Pedro House in Cochise County made me feel the same way.

I felt alive after moving out there and I feel dead back here.

No matter what I do I can't seem to get out of the mental rut that tells me that. Too many things are familiar living back in Indiana again. What is different I do live in a small city with many more things to do and there are plenty of roads to ride a bike. I am told there are miles and miles of hiking trails nearby. The motivation is not there but hopefully it will return as the weather warms up. It is all a matter of setting my priorities, no matter where I live.

As you can see the hounds and the dog enjoy the sunshine here and the grass yard as much as Henry and Walter enjoyed the hotter sunshine and heated rock yard in Sierra Vista. It is only a guess, but one that might be totally incorrect because they are dogs, you would think they would enjoy the soft grass over the hard rock yard. Even if the grass is dead for the winter, those warm rocks had to have felt good to them. They would lay outside under the sun on those rocks for hours.

I was always attracted to the Southwest, as far back as the early 1970s when I would drive cross-country to and from San Diego area to Indiana. I rarely stopped in the Southwest then due to time constraints but I always said if there was ever a chance, I would live out there sometime. When I pulled into that town of 44,000 people in June 2019 I knew that was where I wanted to be. The mountain views were fantastic and I felt 20 years younger with the hot sunshine beating down on me. Every direction you turned you saw mountains on the horizon. The high desert has quite an affect on my brain cells.

Another place I use to love to visit was a little north of that and east. It was where I drove to pick up Henry after making a trip earlier to see him and his litter.  I told Michelle that I would love to live out there sometime if I were to ever move. Well when I was looking at other towns in the winter and spring of 2021, there was nothing available except one house in Winslow AZ that I was interested it. It didn't last more than three days before it was sold. Plus I couldn't find a house with the mountain views I had from my patio chair.

Last winter I looked in all the same places I had in 2018 and the winter of 2019, when I decided I was going to have to leave Sierra Vista in 2021. The past few months there have been more questions and complaints from residents down by Hereford, Palominas and Sierra Vista ... enough for the County Sheriff to hold regular town hall meetings concerning their border issues. Yet, I would still like to live there.

Their current housing market has basically priced me out of a home like I had before. It's not that I can't spend more, it is that I don't want to spend that much money for that type of 20 year old house. Prices are not going to come down at least for years if they do at all in that area. 

At the same time while looking at houses all over the USA, I have to remind myself that EVERY winter I get like this. My mind wanders during the cold weather months and I get itchy feet to move somewhere. Not all towns considered are warm weather areas either. 

I also have to remind myself that most winters I have the urge to disappear from society. Meaning, to find a place out in the middle of nowhere, in a house with no neighbors but have stores, gas and dog food within 20 miles. It is one reason that in the past two months I drove only 76 total miles in January and the less than that in February, 47 miles. I like being somewhat of a hermit. Many times just one person around is too many.

That is what I have been going through the past month or so. I have even talked to agents to buy different homes but also an agent is standing by just waiting for me to give her the word to sell this house, with a warning to her that it might never happen. Based on the current market I doubt my house would be on the market longer than a week. I do like this house, the neighborhood and the town. That is why there is such confusion about why I feel this way.

Then I remember it is just not me moving, the hounds and the dog are considered. Yes they would adapt to change better than you or I. Still I have always considered them when making a change to cars or houses. Not only do I have an easy life here, they have a really easy life. The place is perfect for them really and might even be the best place for hounds that I have ever lived.

When I was outside with Henry yesterday, soaking up the 75° weather you would have thought my brain cells would have aligned for more logical thinking. They did not. Oh I enjoyed the sound of the birds, the warm sunshine, the light traffic noise on the road up behind the field ... but it wasn't long before I was back inside on Realtor dot com looking at houses for sale in new locations not explored. I even look at houses in this city and a few small towns nearby.

Would I be able to handle living in an older house with 6 acres, half if it wooded? What about out in the middle of nowhere, with one neighbor across the road and another to the side of me but open land and open skies all around me but in a place that is just on the "bigger" side of a tiny home. A very old home?

Then when I stand at the fence line looking out at the neighborhood, to see what is so much interest for Watson and Henry and even Walter, I think what a great neighborhood this is. In a great town that has literally everything you need, yet barely over 100,000 people. I wonder what in the hell am I thinking about when I feel like moving.

Will things feel different when I start riding my bike on country roads just a couple of miles away? Will I ever feel settled again after moving twice after living in a house for 22 years outside a small town that offered nothing in amenities? Why do I have a strong urge to return to that area with three different towns to chose from in a 12 mile radius?

It's those open skies of the Southwest and those mountains in southeastern Arizona that haunt me. I am not sure I will ever get away from those in my head, which will only make the desire to move back that much stronger.

All I know, I felt alive out there and back here I am old and dead.

Before the inbox or the comment section fills up with "what I should do" ... I am not into volunteering, I am not into forcing myself to be more social, I am not interested in meeting new people, I am not interested in buying a second home out west to escape to, I am just not interested. Sorry.

It will still be a nice day here in "the tropics" of Southern Indiana, scrambled brain cells and all.


  1. It's the change of seasons and the weather turning from Winter to SPRING!!! Always makes me antsy.... i feel walking or yardwork eases that somewhat, hermit that i am... not liking to be around people,crowds... maybe.... maybe... never hurts to look and thing and dream tho.... :)

    1. I agree ... hermits always understand other hermits. :)

  2. I'm sure someone has mentioned that we only get one chance at this thing called life, make it count. Hell you can move a hundred times, there is no one counting. I always think there is a better place, not that I have found it yet.

    1. Good way of putting it. I have moved a lot in my life, different parts of the USA, some work related some not. I think you are right about "always think there is a better place".

  3. I get it... and if you decided to come back to Arizona, let us know. I've lived here off and on for over 38 years and every time I leave, after 12-15 months, I am yearning to return here as I feel so at home here. It is normal to have that draw back to a place where you called home for many years. You're not the only one. I always end up back here, so this last move back I said I will never move away again. I bought an RV to travel where I might think I want to live.

    1. I told myself recently that if I saw a house locally I liked I would take a roadtrip in a day to go look at it and the property it was on. The last two houses I bought were site unseen except on the internet, I would prefer not to do that again. Some have suggested renting a house or an Airbnb for a week in those places I think I might want to move to.

  4. If a change is meant to be everything will align and it will happen. BUT sometimes what we wish for turns out not to be as great as we think it will be. My two cents.

    1. I have seen living proof of that. These last two moves, everything fell into place like it was planned. I think the airport bright LED lights next door and the recently flooded backyard put my brain cells in a survival mode and ideas started rising to the top. I agree with you.