Thursday, August 30, 2012

Back Here in Tucson

After 2 years of living in Andover, Massachusetts I now find myself back in Tucson. When we first left 2 years ago it was our hope to return within a year. It has taken us two years instead and during that time I started to settle into my life in New England. It felt good to be back near my family again. During that time, I fell in love with New England again. So much has happened since then and now here I am in  new house in new neighborhood unpacking boxes.
 
It was a whirlwind drive across the country with little to no time to access the Internet, let alone blog. We left Connecticut on August 22nd and drove all day until we reached Fairmount, WV. I was driving across country with my friend, Kathryn and my pets, a little dog, named Blossom, and my two cats, Breezy Boy and Sweet Bonnie Blue Eyes. I did not want to subject them to the airplane flight. Plus, it sounded like a grand adventure. Kathryn is a birder like me, so that made it even more fun. Our route to West Virginia took us through Maryland and so we made it a point to stop there and count birds at least once since I did not have even one bird species listed for that state. We found a place called "Fort Frederick" right off the interstate and spent about an hour birding there. From West Virgina (the state without a straight road anywhere) we drove to Kentucky where we spent two nights visiting my son and his wife and my little granddaughter. It was a nice break for all of us before the final push onward. On Saturday night we were in Texarakana, Arkansas. Sunday night found us in Odessa, Texas and Monday night we arrived here in Tucson.  We drove, ate, checked in, unloaded pets, ate supper, returned to our rooms, fell into bed, arose the next day to reload the car and do it all over again. Mile after mile fell away until we were almost here. I drove the last 2 hours of the trip and as I saw the Santa Rita Mountains come into view I felt my emotions welling up inside. The sun was setting in the west and curtains of rain fell in front of a golden sky which splintered out in dazzling rays between the sheets of gray.
 
Once I get my regular computer up and running I will have pictures and stories to tell. For tonight I just want all of my regular followers to know that we did arrive safely in Tucson Monday night. The movers arrived yesterday and unloaded our stuff. We unpacked boxes like banshees and fell into bed exhausted. This morning Kathryn and I went out to breakfast, then I took her to the airport and we said good-bye. While I still have lots of boxes to unpack and things to organize I am finally getting some time alone to process everything and to think.
 
Many people have asked me if I like my house and if I am glad to be back in Tucson. The answer is, I don't know yet. I need some time to process all my emotions and feel what it is like to be back. I can tell you that I bought a new bird bath on my first morning here at the new house and that there is a mourning dove nesting in the rafters of my covered patio roof! I love the area of Tucson that I am living in and I can see the Tucson, Catalina, and Rincon Mountains from my balcony. I am a bit farther away from my beloved Santa Rita Mountains but I can see them when I drive around town. I have yet to visit them.
 
I do not think I will set up such elaborate bird feeders here as i have already seen pigeons and white-winged doves flying overhead and I do not want to attract them to my yard. Once I am settled I plan on setting up my hummingbird feeders and I may try a thistle seed feeder. However, if it attracts nuisance birds I will take it down. I do have lots of lizards in and around my yard and I hope to have some time to photograph a few soon. We should get our other computer up and running this weekend, then I will post more photos and stories from the trip.
 
Other than that, the dog and cats are adjusting to their new house as am I. I felt the desert wind on my face this evening as the full moon rose in the sky. I feel like I am in a time warp and I have just driven back into the dream of a life I once had. Now this is my reality and the life and the house I left behind are the dream. Today I thought about the new young couple who live in my old apartment and I wonder if they are enjoying it as much as I did. Once again I find myself letting go and reaching for something new Back Here in Tucson.

20 comments:

  1. You have so much courage and a great zest for life and frankly, being very selfish, I am glad you are back in Arizona. Although I have loved your New England posts, I have sorely missed your wonderful desert birds and the very feel of the air in your pictures. Drylands are just so dear to my heart.

    So nice that you could visit with your son and family and I do sincerely hope that your mother is stable an no longer in any danger.

    Love and hugs . . . Arija

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    1. Arija, thank you for your kind words. I am settling in. I miss my family terribly but I do have a son and grandson here, which helps! I have been so busy unpacking but hope to get out to the desert soon. since I live in town, my birding experience is a bit different than when I lived in Sycamore Canyon. We own a piece of land down in Rio Rico and I hope to get down there this weekend!

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  2. What a fast trip, Kathy! So happy you arrived safely and are already settling in. It seems Tucson is really where you are happiest. Enjoy your new home and yard!

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  3. It was good that Kathryn helped you like that Kathie. (What a great friend to have)
    Hope all goes well and you settle in OK. Look forward to your many images of the new area, bird and wildlife.

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    1. Roy, Kathryn has strengths I do not. She was a huge help and we had so much fun together! We get along well and are very comfortable with one another. I feel blessed to know her.

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  4. So glad you made it to your 'western home' safely.

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    1. Thank you Sandy! Keep an eye on Maine for me!

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  5. Welcome back to your new home. I look forward to more posts as you settle in. We really Need to meet this winter after I get settled back into Yarnell. Unless you see a visit to the North Rim in your future. And before mid-October.

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    1. Gaelyn, I would love to try to get up there. We will see...

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  6. Welcome back!!! I know I know.....take your time. You're having culture shock. One chapter ends; another begins. I've done it a million times and it's never easy at first but I'm pretty sure you'll fall in love again just like I did. Let me share a personal story. I moved to Tucson in the mid 90's and fell in love....and then I moved away for several years......to return again for the final and last time. It was a bit scary to settle down but I have been so happy with my life here.....and there's so much to look forward to.....and the birding....so wonderful. Once you get settled in, you can travel the Santa Ritas....Montosa Canyon....or the Huachucas....Miller Canyon, Ramsey Canyon.....The Catalinas.....Summerhaven.....the Whitewater Draw in October near Willcox....reports of the Purple Gallinule, a Roseate Bill, Starthroat.....oh my. That's just the tip of the iceberg:) So settle down and get ready for some fun! I'm glad you're back. Sweetwater is open and if you want to go birding, let me know. I'll be at the Butterfly Magic in October at the Tucson Botanical Gardens....Personally, I'm glad you're back. You're going to have a blast! All my best. Chris

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    1. Chris, thank you for this story. It really touched my heart. The birding here IS wonderful and I know it will cheer me up once I can get out there. I do love the desert, I am just missing my family. It was so nice to be so close to them and to be able to visit them so easily. I do hope we get to meet soon.

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  7. What an amazingly exciting journey you had back to Tucson. All the places you went through I have heard of but they are such a long way from here so I am looking forward to the photos. Glad you are safe.

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    1. Cuby poet. Thank you! I need to get those photos posted!

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  8. So glad to read you arrived safely. I hope you are settling in comfortably. Wishing you great happiness in your new abode. Can't wait to read about your Arizona birds!

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    1. Julie, it should be fun once I get settled! Thank you!

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  9. Hi there - these kinds of moves can sap the energy as well as being wonderful!

    Look forward to see pictures / reading your stories

    Stewart M - Australia

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    1. Stewart, thank for the visit! I hope to get some posted soon!

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  10. Hi Kathie

    It is good to hear you have arrived safe and sound. I have to wonder what travelling with cats was like we have had the dogs on a road trip but Max has always stayed at home.

    All the best.
    Guy

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    1. Guy, that cats did surprisingly well after the first day. It took them a bit to get used to the routine. Then they settled in! I brought along their favorite blanket and spread it over my bed every night to make them feel more at home.

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Welcome to my nest! I hope you will enjoy spending time here with me and the birds. Thank you for your comments. I will try to get back to you as soon as I get back from counting more birds.