Livin’ La Vida Loca in a New Town

Middle-Aged Muddlers, Rejoice!

Livin' La Vida Loca

Ah, life in a new city. So exciting. So much to do! And so much adventure. Yes, we’re livin’ La Vida Loca. It’s a middle-aged muddler’s dream.

Week six in Reno and each day brings something new. Why just this morning, we discovered wet carpet in the downstairs hallway, and that, in turn, led to a discovery of — you guessed it — mold! Now we’re in for a jolly good time getting that sorted out!

But wait! I’m getting ahead of myself.

Let me begin my new city “bragfest” at, well, the beginning:

Livin’ La Vida Loca! It’s Just Plain Crazy!

First, they say “getting there” is half the fun, but I say getting there is terrifying! I’m talking about driving! I had forgotten how break-neck fast people drive in the West.

In my old hometown, Berkeley, Cal., I worried about hitting bicyclists, who meander the narrow streets and byways, ignoring basic traffic laws and their own safety. Here, I’m the one in danger. Why? Because I drive at the designated speed limit which means I drive like a slowpoke. Worse yet, dare I say it? I drive like a little old lady.

No, worse yet, I drive like a “tourist!”

Fortunately, thanks to my California license plate, locals whip around me, not even bothering to give me “The Finger.” Still, the first time I pulled out of our neighborhood onto the main roadway at a “modest” 45 mph, I almost caused an accident. Silly me. I forgot to floor it! Here, if you’re not driving 60 mph, you’re roadkill!

Hitting the Hot Spots

And where were we almost-oldsters ambling off to? Well, don’t be jealous, but Handsome Hubby and I are hitting all the exciting hot spots “The Biggest Little City in the World” has to offer. No, not glittering casinos. No, not belly-busting “all you can eat buffets.” And no, not even late-night shows starring hilarious comedians and sultry singers.

Nope — and again, I don’t mean to brag (too much) — but in just a few short weeks, we’ve become recognized big spenders at all the Home Depots and Lowes in town. Yeah, baby, as I said, we’re livin’ La Vida Loca. We’ve been dropping Benjamins like there’s no tomorrow on drill bits, smoke detectors, cleaning supplies, lumber, and all sorts of houseware swag. Yeah, baby, bring on all the hardware bling!

Casinos offer preferred parking spots for frequent slot machine players. I’m going to suggest this to Lowes. I know we’d qualify. Soon we’ll be nabbing primo parking spots right by the door. Yeah, baby, yeah. We’re big spenders at all the big box stores!

And That’s Not All, Folks!

The first two weeks here, we went to Target on a nightly basis! Yes, 14 trips to Target in 14 days. That’s got to be eligible for an entry into the Guinness World Book of Records!

And while some people come to Nevada to gamble, we’re living large in Target, dropping cash by the fistful, restocking our pantry on all those liquids the movers refused to “convey.” White vinegar, red vinegar, balsamic vinegar. We’ve got ’em all! Yes, all the finer things in life are now ours once again. Yeah, we’re partying like it’s 2021.

And to think, I once longed to return to New York City! Who has time to yearn for the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Saks Fifth Avenue, Broadway shows when bliss can be found hunting for supplies in Target at 8 pm. on a Tuesday?

In my youth, I dreamed of being on a first-name basis with the maître ‘d at some posh eatery in midtown Manhattan. Now I know the checkout lady at Target. Top that, Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen. Who’s cool now?

Trouble in Paradise

Of course, life here isn’t all mint mouthwash and drill bits. Even Paradise has its problems. Since we’ve gotten here, there have been — at most — five days of clear skies. Sadly, the terrible wildfires that are decimating homes, businesses, and acres of land in California have blanketed Reno and environs in smoke and ash for weeks. The sky is obscure, the air is unhealthy, cars are covered in ash, and eyes burn when people venture outside.

¡Olé! And Oy Vey

And while we have found the best Mexican restaurant in town and eaten there till our pants are tight, I haven’t found a spot to rival the fresh-baked, delivered-hot-to-my-door bagels of Boichik Bagels in Berkeley. So, life isn’t perfect in the Biggest Little City in the World. But what can I say? Home is where Handsome Hubby is, and man, if that’s not livin’ La Vida Loca, I don’t know what is.

So, here’s to middle-aged muddlers, constantly re-inventing themselves/ourselves everywhere!


And now, for a tuneful 🎶 endnote:

Ricky Martin’s monster hit, “Livin’ La Vida Loca” was released in 1999. Billboard listed it among the Best Lain Songs of All Time.

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