Gods, so much. Like, I can’t even keep track.
We moved! I know I mentioned this in my last blog that was just a copy paste of my newsletter, but Husband, kitties, and I now live in Connecticut. Pros: it’s peaceful, it’s quiet, it’s mostly liberal. Cons: I gotta pay an extra 5 cent tax on all my soda cans, and I haven’t figured out how to get it back yet! Actually, that’s probably a good thing, it’s just weird to see. Not weirder than Atlanta’s city tax on all groceries though, so all things being as they are, it’s probably pretty even.
Why did we leave? We grew to hate the south. It was hot and sticky all the time, everyone moves so slowly, and you couldn’t turn around without a Trump flag being shoved in your face. I’ve lived within a majority that has dissented politically from me almost the entirety of my life, and being white and straight-passing (I’ve got a husband, but if I didn’t, I’d date pretty much anybody on the gender spectrum), I have the privilege of being mostly fine in those places, but I’m pretty sick of it as constant background noise (and trust me, I get that I’m lucky it’s only background noise). Add on the insane population of the Atlanta metro and the increasing disbelief in Covid, and the whole region is just headed for disaster. If I gotta drive 15 minutes to get to a grocery store, I’d rather spend it going 10 miles away down empty roads than going one and a half miles to a Publix full of very slow, very aggressive people who actively cough in my face because I’m wearing a mask, ya know?
Why are we here, specifically in CT? Well, I spent a week in December driving all over New England to find the perfect place to rent. It was a kind of insane undertaking, really. I flew into Boston and rented a car and hit six states in five days, some of them multiple times. I was driving myself out to places I’d never been to meet mostly strange men in empty houses, so the fact I survived is probably pretty amazing. We ended up picking a place based on both location and the house itself–it’s adorable and quiet, and we had a snow already!
I know everyone says I will end up hating the cold, and I did when I first moved to Ohio from Florida at 11 years old, but after the heatwave that was, like, the last decade, and with climate change ramping up, I’m fairly certain this is the right choice. You can always pile on more blankets, but once you’re naked, that’s it.
This is the change I’ve been vague posting about for many months, the one I think I’ve needed for a long time. It hasn’t necessarily been a change for change’s sake that I’ve been wanting (though I did go through some of that a little while ago), just an escape from where we were. Georgia held a sort of negativity in it, for me, that made being there feel cursed. Maybe that sounds like crazy person talk, the kind of words someone would say who does little else other than live inside the fantasy worlds she creates, and maybe it is, but it genuinely feels like a scourge lifted to be out of there. I don’t mean this as an indictment of the whole lower half of the country, it just wasn’t right for me. But also, the south does have a lot to work on. We all do, but definitely down there does.
So, since I’ve been physically packing, then had all our stuff in storage for a month while we stayed with family, searched for a place to live, picked it out and had to set up all those new house things, moved in all alone for a week with no furniture, began unpacking and setting stuff up, and had no cell phone service for the majority of the time (both living in our family’s basement and in our new place–switching carriers now), it’s pushed my projects back a little. I mean, I’m not dead in the water, and I actually feel very good about The Willful Inheritor, but I’m still behind in general.
However, I have a secret little surprise for you if you read through this ramble. You can now get The Weary Traveler and The Wayward Deed in paperback! I’m waiting for my non-proof copies to come before I make an official post about it, but Dear Readers deserve something extra, as a treat.