I think we forgot what retirement means...

It's hot, hot, hot, hot, hot, hot....really hot. All the jokes about the dry heat in Arizona are true - it's like an oven there - but in Florida, it's like a jungle. My glasses steam up every time I get out of the car and the humidity soaks through our clothes in no time. And we are celebrating this hot spell by working outside! There have been several owners of this home, and each one added stuff like cable, Dish and Direct TV, without taking out the previous stuff. So Randy moved the bricks out of the way and started pulling out old wires. We got a big black trash bag full of the junk before he quit, but there may be more. The bricks don't support the house, they are there to keep big critters from making a nest there. Little critters, of course, can slip right in.
It's not enough that we have our own yard to attend to - we are also working on our neighbor's yard. Joe is a sweetheart who is recovering from some health issues, and he hasn't been able to attend his yard recently. His palm tree is dropping ripe fruit on our shared lawn, which will attract bugs and possibly bears. There really are bears here; Donna saw a mama bear and her cub in the park this week. So we offered to trim the tree and clean up the fruit. 
A few days ago Randy cut the dead branches out, and today he got shaped the tree and cut out the fruit and seed pods. The day may come when we don't have 10 bags of yard waste on trash day, but today is not that day. (And trash day comes twice a week).

But we closed the day with dinner at Pete and Donna's, and another round of Mexican Train dominoes, so that makes up for a lot. 

A day off in Mt. Dora

By Saturday we were ready for a day off, so we drove to nearby Mt. Dora. I think Mt. Dora must be run by some smart people. They don't have anything amazing there but they still do a lively business as a tourist center. One way they do that is by all the festivals they put on through the year. The other way is their old downtown, which is almost all cute tourist shops. It's just a nice place to visit for a few hours.

At the edge of downtown is the historic John Donnelly house. I think he was famous for being rich, and he certainly built the right sort of house! It's so pretty that it's been kept in shape by various businesses, including the Masons who currently use it. 
We did a little shopping in the Tea and Spice Exchange, then went to the Magical Meat Boutique for lunch. It's a British-themed place, and they got the drinks spot-on:
They got the fish and chips right too, although I forgot that the fish we had in England were pretty  unseasoned and the chips were a bit soft. And the mushy peas were just OK, but that's how mushy peas are supposed to be. 
My little burger was great! British bacon is part of the loin and it's not fried crispy, but it's really good. 
After lunch we walked through a bunch of the stores but didn't buy anything more. I need to be careful I don't buy eveything I see; the house isn't that big! 

The Orange Blossom Opry

Pete and Donna took us to a music show in the area, called the Orange Blossom Opry. 
The first set was performed by the house band. They didn't thrill us, but I've heard that this wasn't their best night. This was their last show before starting an extended vacation, so maybe they were a bit distracted. But the second band, Boom Town, was excellent! They were great individual musicians who played well as a group, and were funny, too. 

Ah, retirement

There is so much to do in the house, but today the temperature dropped from 94 to 87, so it was a good day for yard work. We pulled up a couple of strips of old plastic edging and about 9 bags of mulch. Then, because that disturbed all the little bugs living in it, Randy sprayed the whole area with bug killer. 
We got ourselves cleaned up and went to lunch at the Ichiban Buffet. As Chinese/Japanese buffets go, it's a pretty good one with a large selection, including a few things that I wasn't up to trying today. Maybe next time... 
Later Pete and Donna drove us to The Villages to hear a band. Tonight it was Paisley Craze, specializing in music from the 60s and 70s. And they are pretty good. 
But I kept laughing at the thought of what the original musicians would say if they knew, back then, that one day people would be line-dancing to the music of the Rolling Stones, the Doors and Jimi Hendricks!


Finally - Internet!!!!  It's been a long time and we have really missed it. A dozen times a day I think "I'll look that up", then realize, no, I won't.

We moved in the house on the 5th and have been busy ever since. For starters, the hot water heater had been off, so when we ran hot water, it stank of sulfur and was a dirty color.
We filled the tub a few times to clear out the old water, and then it was OK. 

Our house has a strange "Florida room". The Florida room is an area along the side of the house that is enclosed and covered. Normally these are screened-in porches, but ours is divided up into scruffy little work areas. 

One of the first things Randy did was strip out all those walls and dividers.  The garbage men around here are awesome; they took everything!
We have learned that we are really close to wildlife here. A couple of years ago a bear crashed through a screen at this address and made off with a bag of dog food. During the day I hear alligators bellowing in the canal behind our house; a couple of weeks ago Game Control took a six-footer out of another section of the canal. And in our yard we occasionally see little armadillos. 
These little buggers are cute, but we really can't let them stay. They cause an average of 10 cases of leprosy in humans every year in Florida, and they are dangerous to dogs, too. 

And our front yard seems to be home to every biting insect known to man! 


It's been a hot and challenging week. We are parked in Lake Griffin State Park, less than 4 miles from our new house. In June it's hot and muggy, and this state park has more hungry mosquitoes and bugs than I've ever seen in one place. I can't walk the dogs without getting swarmed. But things are moving forward. We got the house key on Tuesday and starting moving things in. Got the insurance inspection on Wednesday. Thursday Randy got the world's worst cold and on Friday I screwed my back up. So Saturday I spent all day laying on the sofa in the RV while Randy moved the last of our stuff. Today we will move the RV from the state park to a storage area in our new community, and actually move into our house. We haven't had wifi since we got here, and the new house doesn't have it either. We'll see what can be done about that.