I was kind of upset about the unseasonably warm weather the whole time I was home, and started getting mad at the weather people who were all like, "Isn't this great? Warmest day on record in January!!" And I was like, "Uh, no. It's NOT great. It's climate change and this means we have even less time on this planet, but enjoy." I didn't care at all that it was buzzkill behavior ... people need to be aware. People need to care. Rain in Minnesota in January is not normal. Or good. But other than that I had a wonderful holiday (thank you, Minnesota loved ones and places!), and hope you all did too.
Home is always a wonderful break, where I always strengthen my roots and expand my heart. I've been increasingly torn as to where I belong these days, and the excellent time (and the almost the same weather) got me thinking a lot as to where I should be living now. I suspect it might be neither Venice or Minnesota, but it will be interesting to figure out ... especially as Blogtown is entering its TENTH year, and there are OH so many stories to tell.
I missed the big protest against Starbucks on the Boardwalks, and that was a drag but couldn't be helped. I'm told it was a good turnout in spite of the rainy day, and that the message that corporate chains are not welcome in Venice was ably delivered. I will continue to stage daily protests as I walk by that pile of spit in our eyes, and encourage all to do the same. Even you, tourists (their only hope).
I missed the closing of our beloved Hal's (again!), and I guess I'm not the only one. No one knew until they were greeted by a sign on the door declaring it was closed and the business was "liquidating". I have yet to find out the real story, but my sadness and disappointment is real. Just as the Venice one was starting to once again feel like the locals hang, it's gone. As is our other hang, Wabi Sabi (I know it's Wabi Venice now, but not to me), who I'm told will be closed down for a good long time due to their raging fire late last year. UGH. Where do we hang now on Abbot Kinney? All of this makes it a lot easier to think about living somewhere else (with possibly affordable rents) ... but then you start looking forward to all the fun stuff, like the upcoming Venice Mardi Gras ... like all the art openings ... like all the music shows ... like our documentary, our street art festival (LOTS to tell you about coming this year!) and you go, "Nah, I'm good." For now.
I hope you all had a fantastic holiday break, and as we swan dive into this new year of 2019 (!), I can't wait to tell all the GOOD stories and DO all the good that we've come to expect from our community. Our global community.
Love to all - I'm so looking forward to seeing you and what comes our way this last year of a very interesting decade. Let's do this!