It’s been a while since I’ve written in my blog. On top of that several entries got lost, but that’s all right. Those, and the ones I might have written but didn’t can be classified briefly as the dark days on the sun dial, - not worth recording. They were my Red Sea experience. Now I’m on the other side trying to clean up the bits and pieces of my move to The Willows. In the November 17th blog I mentioned this option but thought my creekside cottage had won out. It didn’t. Again I’m staying in one of the guest cottages (called “villas” here) and my future home is being refurbished down the street a short walk away.
The Willows is a twenty acre plot of land built at the same time as Leisure World by the same builder. The Willows used to be located north of here and at that time it moved into this location. That was forty or fifty years ago, I think. We lived in Laguna Beach then. I had no idea I’d ever live here then, nor did I dream that in the late eighties I’d have my first paying job here. But that’s another story.
So, how do I describe The Willows? Well, it’s a residential community for seniors who have been and are students of Christian Science. Having this in common means a lot, but we are not exclusive or cliquish. Since Christian Science is a religion still in its beginning phase, its adherents are few enough that we find many people all over that we’ve known before. Here it is like homecoming to me. Not only that, the villas are all one-story, exceptionally well-planned units from studios to three bedroom places, all tiled roofed and nestled in delightful landscapes of lawns, trees, shrubs that are mostly flowering and countless rose bushes, orange trees and walking paths. Everyone has a patio and when I was here before I wondered why it seemed so quiet on the patio. Of course, I missed the water noises from the creek and little waterfall. But here I can hear wild birds galore and that’s because we are not near the freeways or heavily traveled streets. One main meal a day is served in the dining room every day except Saturday and those dinners are not the usual institutional fare. They are prize winning cuisine, served graciously. Many friendships are formed at the tables.
Since it is not far from Robin, my daughter, even in the same city, I have not lost that perk. I have given my car to Robin in exchange for her being my taxi driver to places I cannot go on the Willows’ buses. There are three lovely buses that take us shopping all around the area twice a week, to church services and meetings and to special theater performances, museums and other neat destinations.
My new place will be ready for the move-in on March 1st so I’m again staying in one of the guest units until then. Any of my readers who have moved know what an ordeal that is so I don’t need to elaborate, but I’ve had wonderful help on all sides and now I can recoup before the moving in task. My furnishings and household gear (that’s what we called it in the Marine Corps,) are in storage nearby.I have been measuring rooms and planning where everything will go and changing my mind dozens of times. That’s better than changing my mind after they are moved in!
Katie and Jeff are on their own now. Good things have opened up for them too, but they are starting from the ground up, finding jobs to pay the rent and food, riding on city buses until they can afford a car, etc. etc. If I were a young person I might well envy my elder self in many ways. Of course, the bloom of youth is no longer on my brow but there’s a beauty in age too. Maybe you have to have lost your youth to see it but it’s there. Most of us oldsters are wiser, more tolerant, more compassionate and loving. Now that can enhance any home! And if you have a family like mine you may feel you’re on heaven’s doorstep. But I’m hoping to have more years to get ready for that. I’m calling my new home Wayside. I may not be ready for the pearly gates but I’d like to think I’m on my way!