Not Home Yet…

NOTE:  This post has a creation date of 2019-08-12.  I’m tired right now…but I tried my best to complete it (for now).  This post is to be the beginning of trying to share the overwhelming amount of loneliness I’m trying to conquer.


Heather and I splurged a little today and went to Cracker Barrel for lunch (brunch). I believe we arrived just as most of the early “church diners” were heading out. It was nice spending some time with my wife…somewhere besides the interior of this condo.

As we finished our food and are sitting in the car, Heather asked if I was in a hurry to get home. Sat and thought about for a few seconds and told her, no.

“What do you have in mind?”, I asked.

She suggested a short drive down to Manasota Beach. There is a covered pavilion and usable restrooms.

Of course, we have nothing in our vehicle that resembles a beach bag and supplies. We had one beach chair and one of fabric folding chair. We made it work. Overcast skies and a steady breeze made our time at the beach much more enjoyable. Yeah, the humidity is a little rough…feels like there is glue in the wind…but even “I” found it tolerable.

We are convinced that today was rednecks, white socks, and blue ribbon beer day at the beach. Maybe it’s my scruffy beard (growing it out due to a medication side-effect) that attracts the chain smokers, trash mouths, and cheap beer drinking white trash beachcombers. I’m serious here…with the beer belly, salt & pepper hair, and old Labrador Retriever ghost white beard that says, “…that fella reminds me of my cousin Bubba up in Plant City. He’s safe to plant @$$ next to…pop the top on a cold one, and light up a smoke.”

AHHHHH!!!!!!! Wrong.

Carcinogens set aside, we really had a good time listening to the waves and the tranquility they always offer.

On our way back home, we decided to spend just a “little” more money for our “Date Day” (…usually Date Night…but shoving as much money in to savings has kinda left us getting creative on a very tight budget…) and find a locally owned pizza shop. Amore’s on US-41 was the choice. The owner, Ray, was tonight’s waiter (...he gave his waitress the night off so she could get her three children ready for first day of school tomorrow). As I’ve discovered…very few people in this area (Venice, FL) are actually native Floridians. Ray for example moved here from Detroit. He’s been operating his pizza business for eighteen years he told us.

I’ve known for a long time, I am “in this world, but I’m not of it”.

Let’s step back to the beach for a minute. As I closed my eyes, and just listened…a sense of being “out of place” came over me. I can’t say it was a negative or positive experience. I just felt a strange feeling where the waves, the voices, and my senses were telling me…”you’re not home yet”.

Yes, there’s always the distance from where I was uprooted that can provoke similar emotions…but this was a little different.  Sometimes I’m not sure where I am.  I wake up and it takes me a while to figure out where I am.  Given how long we’ve been down here…you would think I would have acclimated myself to our new home and all the great things around us to take advantage off at any time.  Being here has taken a case of separation induced stress with the subsequent loneliness that transpires and amplified it about 100 times.  Loneliness is real…and it hurts in so many ways.

— Bill

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