All You Have

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“Be grateful for the home you have, knowing that at this moment, all you have is all you need.” ~~ Sarah Ban Breathnach

13928526677_bf4dbea619_bI’m tired of avoiding, or trying to minimize, where we live. I tend to say “the desert”, which it is, or “20 minutes south of the strip”, where we are. Yes, I’m embarrassed to admit to living in Las Vegas. I never even liked it when I was a kid and my parents would drag my sister and me to a long weekend vacation here. And yet, here we are. The business of life does not usually accommodate where you get to rest your head. Sure, I want to live in a small town like Fontanarosa, where my family comes from and where, I’m told, we still have relatives. But would I really be any happier? I moved here in 1999 to help take care of my grandfather who retired here around 1985. I met my wife in 2009. Online. A free dating site called “Plenty Of Fish” (probably because we were both too cheap to actually use a pay site). How romantic, right? But if I hadn’t moved here, think of all I would have missed. These have been the happiest days, weeks, months, years of my life so far. (OK, maybe a slight exaggeration but chances are she’ll read this one day!) What would I have been, where would I have been, if not for Las Vegas? No we don’t live in Las Vegas. We live on the outskirts where we “occupy the southern rim of the Las Vegas Valley stretching west of Boulder Highway to just east of Interstate 15. Features include … access to the Colorado River, Lake Mead and Sloan Canyon National Conservation area, along with Black Mountain River and McCullough Mountains.” But I work in Las Vegas. In an industry unrelated to hotels and gambling and restaurants. Yes, we are just like any other suburb of any other city. And this week we celebrated our second wedding anniversary. And this year my grandfather will be 92! And maybe next year I’ll be able to rid myself of this damn insecurity.

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25 thoughts on “All You Have

  1. Congratulations on your upcoming anniversary Emilio. Those of us who freeze to bits the majority of the year envy your location. Its all about perspective 🙂
    How is your sister in law doing?

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    1. I miss snow, howling winds, torrential rain. Really. Thank you for your wishes and remembering about sis-in-law. She is doing fine. Waiting on the results of second MRI, lawyers circling. But she rented a car Saturday and is going to physical therapy. Back to more or less normal.

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      1. Glad to hear she is doing better and continued good wishes for her full recovery.
        You miss the snow, I want some heat….the grass is always greener in the neighbor’s yard. 🙂

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  2. Do you have to wait till next year ? I wonder if the place itself is contributing …? Like, maybe the fact you enter into a total artificial place every day (almost) is having an effect on your conception of yourself …

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    1. No, M-R, I don’t have to wait till next year. I’m working on it right now. This was my “first step” in my personal 12 step program! But I’m not sure what you mean by entering into “a totally artificial place every day” having an effect on my conception of myself. Just because we have replicas of parts of Paris, Rome, Lake Como and New York doesn’t mean I think I am adrift in a Hollywood backlot! I think the overweight tourists in shorts with exposed bellies keeps me grounded!

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      1. Then maybe it’s so repulsive a sight that makes you wonder if you’re actually allowed to feel such repugnance … and thus start doubting yourself. [grin]

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        1. Now I’m totally confused. Thank you. The sight of the buildings and the tourists on the strip I find enthralling, not repugnant. I could spend hours, days, staring at both. But I do not want to be associated with them. Is that repugnance? OK, maybe. But I don’t doubt that our forefathers would roll over in their graves, setting their powdered wigs askew, if they were actually to witness how far we have fallen. Or maybe this is exactly what they had in mind?

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          1. How could ANYONE plan for vast hairy bellies to be displayed ? – or ones far too old be be seen … You are allowed to be confused, though: I often confuse myself. [grin]

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  3. well first of all – I love that Sarah Ban Breathnach quote – and it brought me a peaceful smile to read.
    and next, I love the tone of the photo you give us here – it really fist the mood of your post – and regarding that – yeah baby – nice stuff here! congrats on the anniversary – happy b-day to the grandfather- and cheers to you for “blooming where planted” – and just sharing your thoughts about contentment and insecurities and all that – enjoyed this. 🙂 have a great week

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    1. Thanks, Y, I appreciate your thoughts. Grandpa is doing great. Just gave up driving this past year, voluntarily. Still lives alone. Unassisted. I visit twice a week to take him food shopping but he never wants to go anywhere else.I hope at 91 I can still get out to take photos

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  4. ahhh – that old adage about the grass always being greener ….

    I’m at the opposite end. I’m far from my original roots and sometimes long to break bonds with the city life and retreat back to my small town roots. For me, I think it is just a lust for change 🙂

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  5. Such a great photo! I’ve never been to Las Vegas but I imagine it as a well lit concrete jungle. Your photo gives evidence of green / nature! Loved reading your story, and am so glad that you found your wife after moving to help your grandfather. That’s pretty darn awesome!

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  6. Only the strip is a “well lit concrete jungle”. Would you believe I have very few photos of it at night? We only go there when someone we like is performing in concert. It is usually too crowded and hot during the summer when most people visit. Right now is gorgeous! All the hotels are well landscaped and watered even though, for the people who live here, planting grass and having any outdoor water features is prohibited due to the drought that has been going on for 14, maybe 15, years .

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  7. Everyone lives somewhere, unless they are homeless and then they are still homeless somewhere. Vegas would be a fine place to live, especially in the winter. I play hold-em there, but I know there is life outside casinos and resorts.
    Congrats on your anniversary. You strike me as a good man, and your talent includes wit and wisdom. And we are all insecure, but mask it with bravado and pretense. It is part of the human condition, insecurity.

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    1. The winters here are great. If you go back over any of my posts from the winter months you will see I rarely let anyone complain about their weather without telling them about our “freezing” springlike days! And now in spring we are experiencing weather of 80 and 90 degrees. (My wife says this weekend is supposed to be near 100. So now I suffer.) I am glad you appreciate my “wit and wisdom”, Mike. I certainly appreciate yours. Along with your photography, and editing, and writing….

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  8. Really would like to share my thougths with you when seeing this great pic and the one from Arizona some days ago. But I fail, as english is not my native language.
    I really felt like ‘big great world and I am part of it’. Kind of not being lonly maybe. Being connected. Sharing & caring 🙂
    Sometimes, I like feeling unsecure as it feels like I am still not fixed on few strings.

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    1. There is no problem with your English. You do not fail at all. Thank you for your comments and compliments. I think one of the best things about blogging is the sense of community and the “friends” you make here. Hope to keep in touch with you!

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  9. Happy anniversary! There’s nothing saying you can’t ever move from Vegas, though- if that’s where your hearts lead you. In the meantime, I hope you can find peace with where you live.

    I lived in Phoenix (also the desert!) for 25+ years (my husband was there longer) until we traded it in for small-town life north of The Valley. We were both tired of the traffic, population and oh, the summers.

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  10. Thank you. We live here for now to help take care of my grandfather but we do have plans for future travel and small town life. Neither of us was raised in a small town but that’s what we’re leaning towards.

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"I take anything other than 'you big pig!' as a compliment." ~ Albert Brooks

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