It seems counterintuitive in a state filled with Buick-sized insects and weapons-grade mold, but so far, life here in the Sunshine State is practically antiseptic.
Unlike our 50 year-old house back home, with the on-going war with mice in the basement, here we're sealed off from encroaching reality. Anonymous men appear outside on a regular basis and spray our building to beat back nature, and the central air silently dehumidifies away any lurking mildew.
Our evening walks are on freshly swept sidewalks under groomed palm trees, and the only wildlife we see is the resident bunny, who so far has managed to dodge the rumored alligator in our pond.
If our building were a person, it would just be starting solids and learning to stand. It hasn't even been around long enough to accumulate dust over the door jambs. In contrast, our Bay State house has bathroom linoleum beginning to curl at the edges and windowsills still scarred from the previous owner's dog, Sparky.
Here, emptying the garbage only requires a brief walk holding our one little white bag from the front door to the artfully concealed communal dumpster near our garage. At home, we gather a week's worth in big black bags so we can transport it in our car to the town waste disposal area, aka the dump.
We're also unburdened by the flotsam and jetsam we accumulated over 47 years of marriage. Here we have just what we need for day-to-day living. Four plates, two sets of sheets, one laundry basket. It's remarkable how restful clear surfaces can be to the eye, not a tchotchke in sight, no need to move this to get to that.
I think I'll go make tea now in our one mug and try not to think of the piles of leaves on the lawn at home awaiting our return at the end of this week.