First Impressions


We got into the Burbank airport yesterday afternoon and immediately noticed how much hotter it was compared to Houston. Or maybe it was just that we had been up since 2am local time and were tired from traveling. Whatever the reason, my mother and I were both miserable, and visiting with the cousins wasn’t helping much.

This morning, the weather is perfect. It feels like it might be 75, but the sky is clear and I can see the mountains barely a mile away. I took a walk down the hill to the “village” and found a grocery store with sandwiches and free wifi, and a view of the same mountains.

Southern California has seduced me. I’ve forgotten the heat of yesterday and am ready to move out here. Except for the expense of living here, or visiting here, this would be an idyllic place to be.

So which is more accurate? Was my initial impression, the heat and traffic and endless suburbia the real SoCal, or is the calm, blissful morning more accurate? Have I picked a bad week to come here, because the temperatures will be in the low 90’s every day? Or is my perspective out-of-whack because I live in a place that rarely get’s to 80, much less 90?

I’m not going to decide until the week is over. I think most radical changes deserve a probation period. I have another six days to decide if this would be an okay place to visit again. The cousins are nice people to visit, with an apartment out back and a pool. There are other cousins to the south in San Diego, and an uncle and aunt a little to the north. We could save a lot of money on hotels just visiting relatives.

But there would be so many other people around. The crowds are mellow and not at all oppressive, but the traffic is insane. Getting places is like being back at work, only the traffic slows down for miles, not minutes.

I love where I live. We’re out in the country. After the morning rush hour (730am-9am and fewer than 10 cars), I could take a lawn chair and sit in the middle of the road for hours at a time. The only traffic would be the occasional tractor, or maybe someone running. The view is pleasant, and it only snows three months of the year.

But visiting two big cities in consecutive weeks makes me appreciate it more than I could have imagined before I left. And not having my laptop makes me appreciate other things as well.

I wonder what it would be like if I turned off my phone completely, or only used it as a phone. What would that feel like? Would going back to pen and paper be too big a transition?

I think I should go back to my cousin’s house and sit by the pool to think this over. The sun might be okay on the front porch for another few hours, even if I don’t have wifi. They have wifi but with a password, which they can’t remember because a friend set it up for them.

That could be a sign that I should step back and BE on vacation. Would that be so bad? Could I give up my recent obsession of progress on fronts that may not be significant? I think I should find out, while I have this opportunity, so I can remember what it was like before I had so many gadgets to distract me sometimes, but help me focus others.

When was the last time you had a gadget vacation? Is it time to take one?

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One Response to “First Impressions”

  1. maggie Says:

    Methinks some thoughts from your better half should fit somewhere in your puzzle.

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