2014-2016 Blurred Lines

Facebook keeps popping up blasts from the past and wanting me to re-share them. I look at these and say, ‘that couldn’t have been only a year ago, only two years ago’! Wow, I guess more happened from 2014-16 then I could have imagined. So since this blog is really a stream of my conscience and sometime unconscious thinking I thought I would attempt to recall a list of these events.

Some time in the Spring of 2014 I went from the abnormal corporate dungeons to all the sudden being free with nothing to do and nowhere to go. I could have continued with the devil that I knew and jumped back into another 8-6 seven-day a week stressors or I could try to feel my way through this newfound freedom. After a short time of not working I was actually getting a bit anxious, nervous, even scared. Once I formally decided to not go back to a full-time corporate job I worked at slowly easing into a leisurely role. The attempt at ‘easing’ continues to this day. In many ways I still feel disconcerted by it all and on other days it is superb. Where did 2014 start?

  • January 2014 Denise travels to S. Carolina to stay with Lisa due to an illness and help her through her last semester of school. She graduated in 3 years with a 4.0GPA regardless. Amazing!
  • Spring 2014 I stopped ‘working’ which ended up being a jolt to both my and Denise’s emotional state and plans.
  • June 2014 we went to S. Caroline for Lisa’s graduation and to assist in moving her back to Washington.
  • Lisa secures a good job in Bellevue, staying at home while getting situated.
  • Katie & Sean prepare for their wedding.
  • August 2016 we have Katie and Sean’s wedding. K&S did awesome planning. We held the rehearsal dinner at the house, the wedding was at St. Anthony’s, and the reception was at Fairwood G&CC. All were exquisite.
  • During this time Denise and I are wondering ‘what the hell are we now going to do going forward?’ True empty nesters….
  • We had always talked of living at the beach, moving to the SE coast of Florida, etc…but what do we do now.
  • After the wedding was over, Lisa was settled, and we were able to take a few deep breaths we said ‘let’s go to Hawaii!’ We always think clearer at the beach.
  • So the fall of 2014 we spent 10-14 days in Hawaii trying to figure out what we were going to do when we grew up. The beach was calling!
  • We returned to Fairwood and started to prepare to sell the house and just about everything in it.
  • We celebrated our last Christmas at home, put the house on the market, and prepared to move.
  • Since we were leaving and the house was going, Lisa took a new cool job In Virginia and on the eve of a giant blizzard she and Denise drove her little car and all her worldly goods east. They were 1-2 days behind the blizzard all the way. Like Lewis and Clark but backwards?
  • The house sold in the March of 2015. Boom…homeless!
  • Since I was only 56 and too young to call it retirement we declared we would make a grand adventure out of the next couple of years. We decided we would go ‘on recess’ vs ‘retirement’ since, well, you never know…
  • Our grand adventure was that we would send what ever we had left from the house to a storage unit in Florida as we saw that as our sometime in the future ‘home base’. We would then drive down the ocean roads of the west coast to San Diego and then head east across the very southern USA eventually arriving in Florida. The country is unceasing in its beauty.
  • From there we were going to embark on the biggest adventure yet. We were going to make dreams come true and live right on a tropical beach. We decide on the beautiful beach of Coronado, Panama. We had never been there, didn’t know anyone, didn’t speak Spanish, etc…but choose Panama for many reasons and after lots of research. We said we would stay for 1-3 years since there were other places we wanted to also go.
  • We lived on the Pacific beach overlooking the eastern sky and ocean. Every single sunrise was unbelievable and we made life long friends.
  • We travelled to Medellin, Colombia, a truly amazing place
  • We made a couple of trips back to Florida, the Carolinas seeing Lisa at Christmas.
  • Katie and Sean came to Coronado and stayed with us for a short while.
  • We spent some time in Cozumel, Mexico
  • After over a year we arrived back in Florida.
  • After a short couple of months in The Villages, Fl, we became re-established, were able to spend some time with our parents, bought a car, got a Florida license, registered to vote, and had to deal with this atrocious thing called Obamacare.
  • Other note-able events: I got my CCW permit (concealed carry) before that right is infringed. I also surpassed 9500 twitter followers. If anyone is interested they can follow me at @rbillock.
  • Now after a detailed selection process we are setting up that home base I mentioned in Jupiter, Fl where we will live walking distance to the beach, at a marina on the inter-coastal with pools and tennis courts. Lots to keep us busy – for now. Who knows what might come up around the corner.

So many things happened along the way of 2014-16. On an adventure like this I think you either end up divorced or even more inseparable. I have to say that the time in Panama strengthened our marriage like nothing ever before and I say that in the nicest best way possible. So many experiences, so many memories! 2014-2016 truly has been a blur! We packed more in two years then some do in a lifetime. We are so so thankful. On the flip side don’t think everything was and is peaches and cream or even peachy keen. There have been some very very trying events and days along with all this good. Without the bad we would never know how good the good actually is.

So funny story…once back in Florida we decided we needed to sell our Weber Natural Gas grill we had in storage. So we posted the grill for sale. After about 60 days and many calls that fell through, we are contacted by a couple that want the grill. We meet them at the storage unit and they say they are just getting resettled after being out of the country. Wow, deja vue! So we ask from where and these folks just came back from living in Panama. She was actually a Zonie (born in the canal zone) and he came down to work years ago. Well they bought the grill and she called me later to tell me that the same day they were in line at the post office and someone behind her tapped her shoulder and it was someone who did business with her in Panama years ago and they hadn’t seen each other since. Was this whole interaction a coincidence or what! Ok, it was funny to us…blah!

What is even more exciting is we are just getting started!

As always I hope you enjoy the pictures. Feel free to comment or ask questions.

RB

Here is our new beach (Juno/Jupiter Beach) Water is very clear and clean, some small shells but not a lot, and great distances to walk. This is minutes from our new place so we can walk or bike. The A1A runs just N/S just off the beach and there is a great park across the A1A.

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A pontoon party boat on the inter-coastal
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Under the pier at Juno Beach
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We will be living in a condo at a Marina
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A view off the side of our balcony. Can’t wait to move in in October.
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The stage at my favorite Tiki Bar. Live nightly music. Music video for ‘It’s 5oclock Somewhere’ was made here.
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Denise celebrated ‘Topless’ Day!
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Selling our golf cart in The Villages. Any takers?
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Having dinner/drinks during a very frequent Villages downpour. It has been a very wet summer!
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Nice bar at U-Tiki.
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‘I am the Walrus’, Goo goo g’ joob (if ya don’t know the reference don’t ask)

 

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Denise’s mom and dad on their 56th anniversary at Eaton’s Beach.
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Everyone keeps asking why I can’t ‘be normal’? Well ‘honey’ I flap to my own tune!
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