Everyone, meet Chewy:
Chewy is a "Chug" or part Chihuahua, part Pug. In reality, she is a mutt that fetches (no pun intended) lots of money because she has a cool neobreed name. Puppy mill rip off or not, Chewy was a sweetheart. She belongs to the people who did the Texas inspection on my RV. She and I "bonded" while the work was being done -- mostly because I had the audacity to sit in her chair, so she felt compelled to sit in my lap. She is a little bit bigger than the traditional chihuahua, and full of self importance and pride. And a really cute under bite.
Her human, who is around 19 or 20 years old, is getting married this weekend. She has lived her entire life in Livingston, and will finally get out of Texas for the first time for her honeymoon in Louisiana. When I was her age, I had been to Montana and Niagara Falls in the U.S., the Canadian Rockies and Montreal in Canada, and Paris, France. I knew that there was more to the world than Bridgeport, Michigan. It struck me as sad that this girl's entire world view was Livingston -- a nice place for me to call my "domicile," but a small town by almost any yardstick.
Livingston's best shopping opportunity is Walmart. I know some of you have a problem with Walmart for putting "Mom and Pops" out of business, but here in Livingston it is the only place a lot of things can be purchased.
Livingston has no Target or Best Buy, no major grocery stores typical to the East, no Staples or OfficeMax, no Barnes and Nobles or Borders, and just a single movie theater with a single screen. No Trader Joes, no Cold Stone Creamery, no outfitters of any type, not even a mall. It doesn't look like they have ever had them, or anything close.
However, it is summer year round in Livingston. I asked the same girl if she had ever seen snow, and she said no. I also asked a 48 year old the same question, and she said once -- and then told me how much the thought of driving in it had terrified her. Tomorrow a cold front is going to drop the highs to somewhere in the 60s, but they should be back up in the 80s in a day or two.
Despite the low-key atmosphere, I plan to stay here for a short time while I relax and recover from the rather frenetic pace I've kept up since I went full time. It is great to be in shorts and shades when the snow is falling in Michigan!