I know I am older than most mom's here..... kind of long, but worth it.
I am 52 (this is also why my font is size 5, so the Mom's from the old lady groups can read the posts) and my children are 31 and 25 years old, done with college and living on their own. The only time my children were in the Boston area was to go to college and my dd danced with the Boston Ballet Company. It has been decades since I have lived in Boston, I have only been back a handful of times. For funerals and weddings, etc. It was about five years ago that I was last in Massachusetts, some nut job yelled at me to go back to where I came from and tossed a car suspension spring out of his car, hitting my windshield on the Mass Turnpike. Gee whiz! I know my car has Alabama car tags on it, but come on, I don't have two head and my eyes are not glowing green orbs! The only thing I could tell the State Trooper was his car tag was from Massachusetts and it had a Radio Tower image with a lightning bolt. I imagine some kind of Ham radio type tag. I guess he did not get the Gentile Southern Hospitality when he visited our Sweet Home Alabama. After I got to my destination, I gave the keys to my friend from high school and told her if I, we needed to go anyplace, she would be the one driving. Sorry, I have never seen that many cars in any one place except when the Interstates are on Contra-flow for Hurricane Evacuation, and even then, traffic moves at a steady 60 mph speed.
I imagine that most of you are probably about my children's age, and have young children to chase after. Those are the fun days, enjoy everyone of them, they go by so quickly. Also, I am new to the group and I may sound harsh or flat in my manner of typing a message. In my divorce papers, it stated I had to live in Alabama until the youngest child, my ds, was age 24, married, finished college or joined the military. He will be 25 in 11 days. (OH, what kind of gift should I buy him???? Any ideas?) So, officially, on October 15th at 7pm CST, I am free to move about the country. Now I have lived in Alabama for a long time, I don't talk like I used to in Boston. I confuse the hell out of people when I ask for things in a grocery store. My very first day in the Deep South was to Shreveport, LA, I had just landed our Air Force KC-135 airplane from a non-stop run from London, UK. I was tired and sick of seeing the inside of that plane! 16 hours of non stop droning noise. Taking pictures of Iceland and Greenland was fun, but after that is was nothing but water and clouds. I landed and asked the Waitress for a cup of coffee and a danish. Her prompt answer was "we don't sell foreign food here" I knew then this was going to be an uphill climb. A bulky roll, nope. A submarine sandwich, nope. I have learned the lingo and I can make the best iced tea for miles. I can hear the gagging from this far away, I only drank iced coffee, not iced tea! I have learned to carry tea bags in my purse if I go out to dinner, I can just see them digging in the back storage room for a tea bag. My cousin sends me a case of Salada tea, my favorite.
I am 52 years young (I feel like a 100 today) and I am retired military and retired from my last civilian job, post military career. I have a decent income, but I can get by on next to nothing, I was from a 'broken home', back in the 1960's when in the Roman Catholic Church was just NOT done! I was an original latch key kid. There is a lot to like in Alabama. We have lots of space, miles and miles you can drive and see nothing or nobody. Drive two hours in most directions, you will end up in Atlanta to the East, the Gulf of Mexico to the South, New Orleans and Mississippi to the West, but it will take about 6 hours to get to Tennessee due North. So, if you don't like the weather, wait five minutes and it will just get a little hotter. We only have two seasons, HOT and OMG HOT! Our Winters last about six weeks, the low at night in the upper 30's and the highs in the low 50's. Then it is warm again, and I begin mowing the lawn in February. We have had a drought, so I have not had to cut my lawn this month, but I pay the lawn guy the same amount each month. Since he cannot cut the grass, he is digging some holes for me, I want to plant some bushes along the fence line, to hide the neighbors badly neglected yard. Ick.
Now I have introduced myself to y'all, I need some feedback. I like Alabama and the Deep South in general. I have grown roots here, but as all of you know, there is something about New England that just keeps my heart strings tugging, wanting to see snow, see the leaves change color, having to buy a winter coat, not a new sweater.
My current retirement income is just over $50,000 per year. I do get some incremental pay raises for cost of living, and I don't owe anyone anything. I know the taxes are going to kill me for the first five years, then, because I joined the military from Boston, my Massachusetts tax rate will drop considerably. I've done a lot of home work on this. But, what I need are people on the ground there, who can tell me what is a nice place or a safe place to live. I have never lived in an apartment ever, so I don't know how that will go down. I plan to rent first, then buy later. I have a service dog, so I need some kind of yard. I don't want a huge house, I don't want to even try to heat something anything over 1,000 square feet. I would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE a loft style home. That way I can just wheel myself around in my power chair and not knock stuff over, like I do here in my non handicap ready home. I won't miss that, at all. Not sure about basements, we have slab foundations because the water level is so close to the surface. Basements equal a junk yard for stuff, and they tend to attract water! I don't want stairs, since I cannot climb them and I don't want to do a Jackass 3 movie impression trying to get my power chair downstairs! My ds may like to try it, but I'll let him buy a new power chair when/if he kills mine. He lives in Chicago and my dd lives in the Virgin Islands.
I have absolutely nothing to keep me here. I have friends, but they travel a lot, so I am sure I would see them from time to time. I have no family other than my two children. Both my Mom and Dad have died and I am the last living child of their marriage. I am an orphan. But, I got used to that from the distant living situation, from being in the military and moving around the World alot.
So, can we be friends? I am not a Troll, I am looking for places to live. Where would you live if you had my income? Is it EVEN possible to live in New England on that amount of income? If any of you ever looked at Tumbleweed Tiny Homes, I want to build the B-53 model. It is about 1,000 sq ft, cute as a bug, it does have stairs, but I can install one of those lift chairs to go up and down stairs. I am going to add a larger than the floor plan back bedroom on the first floor, if I have to live on one level. I can then use the upstairs for an office space and a guest room. Projected building costs (in today's market) are planned for about $60,000. That is well in my budget. I will also have the money from the sale of my current home and any savings I also have. http://www.tumbleweedhouses.com/products/b53
Wow, this is a long letter, sorry for all of you who have one of those droid type phones that you can read text and view CM on. My post must look like the Bible!
Thanks for reading this. Please, any ideas, or if you have those free house/apartment guides for your area, I will pay you to send some to me. Cash. I can also send delicious Pralines, too!