“A Journey’s expectation.”

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Several hours ago we were seated at our dining room table Loretta, and I sat next to one another holding hands, sharing kisses as our excitement mounted about our retirement journey.

Three weeks after a gala retirement party held in our honor along with several post-retirement events hosted by family and friends our flight is scheduled for tomorrow morning. Our bags are labeled and have been packed for two days, yet we continue looking over the brochures providing retirement activity options.

We have planned for two years for tomorrow morning’s flight, but we spent five years practicing as snowbirds to avoided the long brutally cold winters in Minnesota. As seasonal snowbirds to Southwest Florida, we fell in love with the warmth making it an easy decision to retire to the area.
However, after a lifetime of living in the Minneapolis, and St. Paul metro area, we were ready to transition and although we will miss our family, close friends and associates along with the annual festival and activities in the area.

As we began our process, we divided our priorities into the categories of home, transportation, exercise, annual arts and crafts events, and touring state and national parks. I added the sub-category craft beer locations.

Loretta, took on the home purchase, its location, and its size. My only input was my need for a garage large enough with space for a work bench. When Loretta decided on a five-bedroom home, she planned to convert one bedroom into a crafting room for herself and the second bedroom with his and her computers for both of us to share. The other two bedrooms will be for visiting guest.

Our master bedroom is enormous with extras Loretta decided on, like her massive closet size, a subtle nuance, a bidet toilet, and a shower I have tried to imagine using, called the thermostatic shower system with an extended arm, on a slide rail with eight body jet, shower heads. I have never experienced or heard of this type of shower system, yet, I was not surprised when it came with a thirty-page manual telling me how to operate, and that’s when I became a little apprehensive about showing.

The home has an in-ground salt water pool large enough for lap swimming with a jacuzzi/whirlpool at one end with a mosquito screened cage decorated with brightly colored bedding flowers and dense green shrubbery surrounding the outside of the cage.

She gave me the duties to arranged service contracts for lawn service, heating and air conditioning, pest control and pool cleaning. I was pleased to conquer this task after years of conducting handy-man self-maintenance on our home in Minnesota, and I was glad to hire out my former chores to some else.

We worked with our local Car-Max dealership to purchase two used cars and with help from the realtor, had them delivered to the home and parked in the Garage. For daily exercise, we picked out two bicycles at our local Trek bike store, and we will pick those up at the local store once we arrive.

Loretta spent two months online shopping for furniture for the entire home including the patio furniture and arranged for its delivery along with shipping our clothing to the new house. The moving process has been relatively smooth because of my years of marriage wisdom which has taught me not to comment unless asked when Loretta and I have divided up our duties.

So here I sit at the dining room table close to midnight, and my excitement keeps me up to finish recording this journal entry into my diary. I’m a little nervous as we journey into the future of retirement which may keep me from sleeping comfortably well tonight.

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