We got home at 7 p.m. yesterday. After unloading the truck I tucked myself in bed and got up 12 hours later. Sweetie's health has improved and mine has declined, a common turn of events when one plays nursemaid for nine days.
As I sit here blogging he has gone for a nap; seems he's tired from doing things for himself today. The kitchen isn't much of a mess and it can get a lot worse before I start disinfecting it.
But, before I go off on a tangent about what a dribbling, clueless specimen a man becomes when the woman is unavailable - and his repeated trips to the bedroom to ask, "Don't you feel better yet?" - it occurred to me that trying times bring forth new revelations about a person's abilities and character.
Imagine my surprise when I discovered that Sweetie has NEVER been away from home more than our five day trip to the Upper Peninsula last EAster? So a 10-day visit was hell for both of us and made worse by him getting ill. No wonder I'm sick now.
It has been sheer comfort to stay in bed all day!
When the SHTF he will have no problem hunkering down here as it is what he does every day. Take the man away from his woodpile, recliner, TV and remote and he doesn't see the point to much of anything - unless we are looking at a place that reminds him of here. No doubt about it, this place is his castle and he's the King. Time away from it is threatening. I am amazed.
Another thing I noticed was how much geography plays a part in one's perspective. The Upper Peninsula of Michigan is by no means an urban empire gushing wealth and plenitude through every lane. It is, however, less affected by the downturn than the area we live in though the signs of a slowdown are there. According to my three adult children, "now there are four or five foreclosures in the newspaper nearly every day instead of one or two." A waitress friend said business is down at the greasy spoon and a few stores have closed. Talk to Realtors though and all you hear is glowing sales reports. According to the three I spoke to, the majority of their sales are to OUT OF THE AREA buyers. Land and homes are still cheap, comparatively speaking. There are McMansions on the lakes and a few dizzy owners who think their remodeling job justifies a higher price but, overall the bargains are still there - except for vacant waterfront. And now that Jim Rawles has mentioned the U.P. as a retreat locale their sales will spike for awhile.
Believe it or not, we looked at a three bed, one bath, two story shingled house on a double lot in a small community for $10,000!! A thousand down and $200 a month and it could have been ours. Just as we decided we'd jump at it someone else beat us to it. In hindsight, though, we really didn't want to be in town - no matter how small. My friend still has wooded, hillside acreage up for sale and I hope it stays that way a while longer. It's a piece of property that most would reject BECAUSE it is a hillside - the entire parcel. Her husband is a logger and he's built a very good road up one third of it and then across another third of it and you can see for miles. It was select cut so there's still plenty of woods and a huge padlocked gate keeps nosy people away.
So, if any one's feeling especially generous and wants to give me $25,000 for 17 acres give me a holler.
Another thing I noticed was that despite the national media's hype about the financial crisis, most people were doing whatever they could to maintain the status quo. Granted, I don't know everyone in the U.P. but repeatedly I heard remarks like "cutting back to twice a week instead of four times a week" or "we're buying fewer gifts this year but we're still going to go all out for our decorating" and this from my youngest son, "I'm going to give the kids a great Christmas because it may be the last nice one they have."
And then there are people like my ex who made a point of calling to say, "I hope you enjoy your visit with your Dad" and then went on to witness to me about how God provides and there is no need to fear. Seems his pastor has scheduled prayer twice a week for the congregation to call out to God to open up the copper mines again and make the area a mecca for lost souls in search of Christ. The ex's final admonition was, "if we act out of fear - which is the Devil - and we stop participating in the economy we will show God that we don't trust him to provide." By then, I'd had enough of his high and mighty blabber and asked where he got the idea that I'm operating out of fear. He said he'd been told that our home is "stocked for Armageddon" and that shows him we don't trust God. I kept my reply brief. "You are as delusional as ever."
After talking things over I reassured Sweetie that if and when we move to the U.P. our lifestyle won't change. After all, anyone I know thinks our's is a boring life so we won't have much company. Besides, they're all busy being good ol' American consumers and scheduling every blessed hour of their day while their cupboards are nearly bare and their credit cards are maxed. And yet, they're still easily bored.
Oh well, at least we made it home safely and tomorrow I'll go shopping in the spare bedroom. Take care everyone, Treesong