Well, I signed the largest check I've written in my life, I filled my car with gas, and I made the drive south to sunny Arizona, armed only with my sunscreen and pastry bags to keep me alive. I was fortunate enough to land myself an8 month lease in a lovely penthouse condo that sits about four minutes away from school. (To your left you will see my view of Scottsdale from my balcony). I admit, I was a little aprehensive upon arrival, considering I had never seen the place before, but as it turns out, I have a pretty nice set up here. Let the gloating commence: Here at Scottsdale Shadows, residents enjoy 24 hour security, tennis courts, a private golf course, pools, jacuzzis, saunas (for those who have lost their minds and want more heat), a gym, a library, billiards room, art studio, woodworking studio, and ceramics studio, to name a few. Why the crazy amenities? Well, actually, I have a confession. I have checked myself in to a retirement community (or, as my friend Brandon so kindly put it, "grandma country" -no offense to our senior population). Now, while it may be true that 0% of my neighbors are datable, and the social scene is pretty limited, particularly after 8 pm, there are some wonderful advantages to living in a retirement community. 1. Peace and quiet. I almost never have to tell Bertha to keep her rock and roll down. 2. Safety. Though I still do, I probably don't need to lock my door. I think it's more likely that someone will accidentally wander into my apartment thinking they're at their place than somebody breaking in to rob me. 3. Dear dear neighbors. Joyce and Phyllis on the fifth floor are simply delighful people. In fact, everyone I've met has been delightful. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that nobody has to go to work or study for finals. 4. Ego boost at the gym. Remember those horribly embarrassing days at the gym or pool, when you know you're out of shape, pasty white, and perhaps a bit chubby or unshaven, and you want to slip down the shower drain as you look around at all the beautiful triple T's (thin, tanned, toned) around you? Well, I'm still out of shape, pasty white, and perhaps a bit chubby, but for the first time in my life, purely by virtue of my age, I am quite possibly, by default, the prettiest thing around. So if you're feeling a bit down on yourself, I highly recommend paying me a visit. (Besides, you'll get to sit on my awesome retro L-shaped couch pictured above.)
I've been fairly impressed by my little town as well. Scottsdale seems to be fairly arts-friendly, and has quite the nightlife. There are many a restaurant and jazz club I am anxious to try.
School starts bright and early 6:30 Monday morning. I've just been to my orientation and picked up my uniforms and books, so it finally feels like things are starting. Granted we won't get into the kitchens for another three weeks (sigh), but I'm very excited nonetheless. I don't think I've ever stayed up so late reading ahead in my textbooks before school starts (and considering some of the fascinating psych books I've had, that's saying something). I really like the chefs here. Our Executive Chef Jon Paul was describing this chocolate he once tasted (made by the company who will be giving us a demo next week- yay!), and he got so passionate, with his arms flailing and the adjectives flying, he reminded me of a very enthousiastic conductor in the middle of Beethoven's fifth I once saw on PBS. I think I've found a kindred spirit.
I wish you all well as the school year starts and you head back to school, send your children to school, or take on whatever adventure life sends your way. Much love, Liz