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Saturday, June 27, 2020

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things by Kait Carson

On or about July 13th we will be leaving Florida and relocating to Maine.  I wrote about this transition in my last blog. Since that blog, more boxes have been packed, decisions as what to keep or toss made and we’ve had workmen in the Maine house seeing to upgrades and repairs.
The process has been exhausting. Writing has been nonexistent even though I’m in the editing phase, which uses far different muscles than putting words on the page. Every spare minute has been devoted to the exodus. The end result is we are about 99% finished with everything we can do for ourselves. There are still the little surprises of forgotten items, but the worst is over. Or is it?
This is the second time we have left Florida behind. In many ways, I grew up here. The state has been a part of my life since 1957. Holidays and most summers meant visiting cousins who lived in Miami. In 1970 I attended the University of Miami and graduated in 1974. After a brief foray to Virginia and New Jersey, I moved here full-time in 1979. When we left in 2005, we wondered if we would ever return.
The longing to maintain a connection to Florida led me to set my books there. Both of my existing series are set in Miami and/or the Keys. My newest series is set in the Keys. I know that there will be visits, and research trips, but the desire to live here again full-time – that ship has sailed.
The excitement of the move is bittersweet. I’m making a conscious effort to catalogue a few of my favorite things. The graceful sway of a palm tree in the breeze. The way the sky turns angry before a thunderstorm. The endless color of winter blossoms. The rabbit that has visited us every spring since we moved in. I’m sure it’s not the same rabbit, but I would like to believe it’s a descendant of that first bunny who showed up on Easter Sunday. The gopher tortoises who can move with amazing speed when startled. The frog that appears in our tiki hut at odd times. The blazing sunrises and the cotton candy pink clouds at sunset.
Each of these items speaks to me of the Florida I am leaving behind. I’ll hold them in my heart on the trip to Maine and during the long nights of winter. But I know it’s time, and I’m looking forward to new adventures in an entirely new landscape.
Have you balanced the ebb and flow of a much desired move? Would you go back?


KM Rockwood said...

While I do sometimes feel a bit of nostalgia for places I have left behind, I'm not sorry to have moved on. I find that I tend to forget the disadvantages of the places where I've lived in the past, and when I go back to visit, I'm surprised by what I find. The horrible traffic on Long Island; the gritty streets of my old neighborhood in Chicago; the closed high school and main street of the Michigan town we lived in.

Margaret S. Hamilton said...

I never look back after we move. Yes, I miss mild Atlanta winters and my camellia bushes. But I don't miss the traffic, fire ants, copperheads, and relentless heat in the summer.

Grace Topping said...

Congratulations on being brave enough to take on a new adventure. Having lived in England for a number of years before returning to the U. S., I find that when I'm here, I miss the things of there, and vice versa. Good luck with your move, and I hope you and your husband will be very happy in Maine.

Karen Lakis said...

Best of luck with your move! I've moved more time than I like to think about. My last move - to Vermont - happened about a year ago. It felt like quite the upheaval, but we're so glad to be here. Yes, sometimes I feel nostalgic for the places I left. Every place I've lived has had something about it worth missing, and I guess that's a good thing. I do love northern New England, though. I hope you'll be happy in your new home. Maine has so much to offer!

Kait said...

Kathleen, that is so true! It says a lot about resilience of spirit that we remember the good and the satisfying of where we've been.

Kait said...

Ah, Margaret, fire ants, heat, and copperheads - you are correct, I will not be longing for any of those things. I'm so grateful that Maine has no poisonous snakes. It would be hard not to long for camellia bushes. The color of the flowers is unique.

Kait said...

Thanks, Grace, I know exactly what you mean. We seem to leave bits of our hearts in all the places we've lived. Perhaps that's what calls us back.

Kait said...

Thank you, Karen, and I'm so glad you are enjoying Vermont. It is a lovely state - four perfect seasons and great skiing! We'll be in the Crown of Maine - the country of Evangeline - like Vermont, a beautiful place.

Kaye George said...

I'm kind of an expert on moving, having bought and sold 10 houses, and lived in a few rentals besides. Almost all of our moves were cross country, or to a faraway state. I've always hated leaving the old place behind and have always been excited to move to the new one, but with trepidation. The one I wish we could have stayed in was MN. One that I was eager to leave was TX, because of the terribly hot weather and the years of drought when we were there. But now I miss it so much! I wish you luck and an easy move! No lost or broken things! Or maybe just a few, but not things you care about. I don't think we've ever not had anything lost or broken.Three moves equal a house fire, they say.

Susan said...

I always feel a sense of place. Sounds like you do too.

Kait said...

Thanks, Kaye. It's always something with a long move. The worst was the first time to Maine, they lost most of my books. They really knew how to hurt a writer! This time we are doing 99.9% of the packing ourselves. I often wonder how much shattered glass I'll find when I open those boxes...doing my best, doing my best.

I bet you do miss TX. I always had the impression that you liked the place and its vitality but the weather was awful while you were there. For some reason, TX, LA, and FL get the brunt of everything. Never a dull moment.

Kait said...

You are so right, Susan. Home is a place in the heart.