Mature Life Features

Cecil Scaglione, Editor

Posts Tagged ‘Phoenix

We Haven’t Made it Yet . . .

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. . . even though we moved in at the end of last month. Reality of the change still has to sink in.

After several decades in our Pacific Beach home that was air-conditioned by Pacific breezes, we relocated at the end of last month to an Independent-Living apartment complex in Gilbert, abutting the Phoenix suburbs of Mesa and Tempe in Aridzona.

The quarters are spacious and comfortable, the location is handy to everything we need – banks, eateries, shopping malls, post office and medical-care offices and clinics – all our meals are provided when we decide not to prepare anything in our own kitchen, the folks are friendly, and we’re just 15 minutes from our daughter and the grandkids.

The move requires leaving our son in San Diego and adjusting to community living as well as the dry desert climate that, we’ve been told by everyone, is H E L L for four months every year.

Besides the voluminous amount of phone calls and document changes, we’re also snowed under with too much stuff. Getting rid of that has become a major priority. No. 1 is changing auto registration and driver’s license. No. 2 is lining up doctor appoints. Stuff-elimination is No. 3.


Written by Cecil Scaglione

April 7, 2017 at 9:24 am

The Best Present for any Birthday …

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… is being present, followed by the presence of family and friends.


And what a birthday party I had this past week.

Bev worked hard on this gathering and it showed as what felt like dozens of people poured through the front and back doors last Saturday (after my 80th birthday Dec. 2) shouting Happy Birthday and tossing hugs at me and each another.

Brother Lou and his wife Jean flew in from Toronto for a two-week visit. Joe Brown, a longtime friend and former newspaper colleague from Kitchener, Ontario, and his wife Edith drove over from their winter digs in Phoenix. Daughter Heather with husband Steve and the grandkids, Dean and Melia, flew in from the Valley of the Sun. My daughter Cris, and her mother, Peg, from Culver City arrived about the same time as my son, Mike, who lives nearby. Rounding out the group were close friends ex-TV staffer John Beatty and wife Pat, our masseuse Ofelia, former neighbor Dru, and current neighbors Keri and Dave who live in Dru’s former house.

The weather was grand so the group gravitated to the back yard and everyone chatted with everyone else and – the key to any good gathering – enjoyed each other’s company. Bev (and I) forgot to point out in the invitations that gifts were not part of the day. As a result, I amassed a hoard of loot.

Thickening and sweetening the icing on the birthday cake were calls from Kay and Jerry Salyer, despite his disturbingly debilitating illness, and from Colleen and Fernando Cicci from Toronto to wrap up the weekend. The success of the entire event was due to Bev’s planning and pains.

The socializing continued into Sunday when the kids and grandkids came by and we tangled at dominos and on to Monday when Mike dropped in for a few hands of scopa and scopone  It really didn’t end until this morning (Tuesday) when Lou and Jean were dropped off at the Air Canada terminal for their flight back home.

While the motion and movement of people in and around the house have ended dramatically and abruptly, the memories will only become burnished as this time slips slowly and silently into the past.

— Cecil Scaglione 

Written by Cecil Scaglione

December 9, 2014 at 11:51 am

Movin’ Madness ‘n’ Manners

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By Cecil Scaglione

Mature Life Features

The next person requesting assistance for a move will have to speak with my attorney. Everything in, on and around me hurts from dragging boxes, lifting furniture, climbing stairs, jumping  off trailers,  dodging characters carrying stuff, and just trying to stay alive. The soft warm rain we had Wednesday made the entire week survivable. As an aside, on our way to Phoenix, the saguaros that  began appearing alongside Highway 8 east of Gila Bend looked scrawny and scorched. On our return trip to our soft and comfortable beds, they appeared saucy and sated and green with the water soaked up during the week’s storms.  

Having moved into  a half dozen homes during my married-with-kids  period, several rules and reminders popped up as we transferred a household acquired by two adults and two youngsters over the past decade.

1 – If you’re not carrying anything, get out of the way.

2 – If you are carrying something:

            don’t drop it   

            don’t bang the walls with it, especially in the “new” house

            don’t leave it sitting in the middle of the floor — get it out of the way

3 – Make sure relatives, friends and neighbors who volunteer to help show up.

4 – Make sure they show up on time.

5 – Start early; moving stuff after dark is boring, tiring and unnecessary…

6 – … unless you’re moving in the desert, in which case you should start early, take off for siesta during the heat of the afternoon, and resume in the cool of the evening.

7 – Move ALL the big stuff first (see No. 8).

8 – The exception is COMPUTERS. Get them up ‘n’ runnin’ asap.

9 –Stay out of discussions on where things should go – “put the dining table there, the big mirror on that wall, the entertainment center in this room, etc” Let the moving family square up on that stuff.

10 – Before moving, measure all your beds and dressers and appliances and furniture to see if they will fit where you would like to put them. (e.g. The fridge hole in the new house was almost a quarter-inch too small for the fridge being moved. It had to be squished into its stall. A sofa set was too large and bulky for the site the family selected originally so it had to be taken back down the stairs it was laboriously manhandled up and replaced by a less formidable sectional set.

11 – Don’t forget the moving dolly at the “new” house because you need it to manhandle stuff onto the trailer or truck (or moving vehicle) at the old house.

12 – Plug in a fridge at the new house to cool water, lemonade, beer and other refreshments to make the experience more bearable.

13 –Pack a toothbrush in your pocket so you can handle that chore on the first night and morning in the new house without having to scramble through piles of boxes, bags and bins to find it.

These rules apply primarily to short moves done by families and relatives and friends and neighbors who know nothing about moving  and for which moving vans and moving people have not been hired.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

July 7, 2012 at 9:12 am

Still Sizzlin’

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Made it Monday through the heat accompanied by dozens and dozens of sand spouts that erupted about mid-way between Yuma and Gila Bend and kept decorating the landscape right into the southern portion of metro Phoenix. We even drove through one that danced onto Highway 8. Fortunately it was a baby but it did “whump” the  Highlander a good one.

Moved the kitchen fridge with a dolly onto a trailer and to the new home right after our arrival. It had to be squeezed into the fridge space created by the kitchen designers. We creased the fridge but didn’t break it or jeopardize its integrity and operation.

Tuesday was up-and-down-stairs day with sectional sofas, an exercise anyone who’s moved that type of  furniture will readily ID with.  And you’ll also recall that sectional furniture — just like refrigerators — fits best only into the first place it was purchased for. After squeezing the massive three-section corner sofa/sleeper out of the old house and into the new house, it was decided (after a lengthy committee meeting) that it would fit and feel best upstairs in the new house. So that’s where it is now. It took with it several thousand calories, a few quarts of sweat, an aching arm, and a dead shoulder . 

Most of the kitchen cupboards have been cleared in the old house and filled in the new. Next come beds and computer furniture and nits and gnats. The old  house has to be ready Thursday for a week-end real estate open house. Wish us luck.


Written by Cecil Scaglione

July 3, 2012 at 6:37 pm

This is crazy!

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It’s one thing to take pride in not following the crowd but it’s stupid to head into a burning building just because everybody is running the other way. So we announce with profound pride — and substantial stupidity — that we’re going against the flow.

We’re leaving our pleasant Pacific Ocean-cooled community to spend the week of the frying Fourth in Phoenix at a time when the cosmic collective has known for decades that ‘Zonies have been escaping the Hades heat of Arizona by flocking to California beaches since wheels were round.

We’re dashing headlong into the Valley of the Sun to help kids and grandkids move into a new home. The mission is meaningful, but the  brain boggles just visualizing heat waves shimmering off the simmering stuff being toted from one set of closets to another.

There is some good news: the new place has a pool and it’s filled with fresh water.


Written by Cecil Scaglione

July 1, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Holiday Heads-up

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(Somehow, this item got tucked into here, waaaaaaay out of date.)  Got the suitcases and coolers to air out for next weekend’s packing. Driving to Phoenix Monday Dec. 20 to spend the week visiting with the kids and grandkids. Will also be neighbors with Joe and Edith Brown from Kitchener in a mobile home park near Steve and Heather. Joe was a photog at the K-W Record when I worked there, which seems like a long time ago on a galaxy far away.  Should be a comfortable week. Have to get to the discount houses there and pick up some new wardrobe items since I’ve given all my XL clothing away and need to replace them with mediums..

Will update this with some of the thoughts and things that mark Christmas commemorations in the desert sprawl.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

July 17, 2011 at 6:44 am