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Saturday, February 26, 2005


Florida has always been known as a very transient place. It's really getting weird, though. We've been here just over six months, the first tenants in this newly constructed residence, and we are soon to be the old-timers.

Dave, who we thought was a long-term resident but has only been here two years, has sold his house and is moving back to Pennsylvania. Carol ("Half-a-lung" to my medical professional cousin, Carolyn) has disappeared and her recently paroled stepson is now living in the house. Come to think of it, maybe someone should find out if Carol is still alive. Dalton, our ADHD bi-polar little friend, and his grandparents have sold the house they live in and are scheduled to move in a month or so across town to their new, hopefully hurricane-proof house. And on the other side of us, in the twin of this house built at the same time by the same developer, we are already on our second set of neighbors. First was the bookkeeper of our landlord who bought it from him as an investment, and lived in it briefly with a rotating assembly of grown children while her other heavily damaged properties were repaired. I thought it was to be a rental. It has now been sold and we have new neighbors. None of these properties sold recently have ever had a sign on them. Truly amazing.

(Maybe you're just doubting my realtor skills. I would be too, except that I did find a house last month in a waterfront neighborhood for $45,000.)

Anyway, new neighbors are from Miami and will be enjoying their new property on weekends. They have two boys, Andres and Daniel, referred to by L as "Andy and Dandy," who are close in age to our two older girls. Last weekend there was a giant freeze-tag tournament, bikes and scooters everywhere, even a Civil War played with camping gear and stick ponies. It looked like a scene from The Little Rascals.

We've been keeping our eye out for historic fixer-uppers in downtown Punta Gorda. I've always wanted to live in a little town where you could walk to the grocery store, park, post office, bank, church, assuming one goes, library, etc. Now's the time to grab something, it's quickly on its way to being unattainable. Or, we could stick with our buildable four acres two miles outside of town, or maybe locate an historic commercial building in town with living space above, or a vacant downtown lot in need of mixed-use redevelopment, or...

Sorry, got to cut this short. G wants to look at a ten-acre piece a little further down the road.

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