Welcome to 2021

Wasn’t it a pleasant experience to wake up this morning to a new year where we can consider ourselves being handed a clean slate with which we can start afresh? In more ways than one, I’m very glad to see 2020 behind me as it’s been quite the remarkable year where there’ll be lasting mental “snapshots” of toxic conversations and un-warranted bashings. I’ll never fully understand how some believe they have such license.

I did a little more shoveling at my office this morning before getting prepared for my mid-morning showings which went as I’d expected. I was happy to be able to take a look at a home that’s been on the market for some months, and walked away knowing fully-well why it hadn’t yet sold. We both agreed that the best remedy for that homesite, would be to purchase it cheap enough, scrape the house and garage off, and build new. I’d say that site is where its true value lies.

After my buyer having taken a drive-by one of them prior to our meeting, it got nixed due to the location which I’d already questioned when given the address. As we all know, you can make all the changes you want with a given home, but you can’t change its location. I would be leery about living that close to a very busy commercial street along with being surrounded by rentals.

I did have an opportunity to take a look at my buyer’s home which will be sold if there’s a replacement found, and I couldn’t have been more assuring that it would sell in today’s market. Again, it’s in a very good location, exceptionally well cared-for, and offering the preferred number of bedrooms and baths. I actually couldn’t find one thing that I’d do to make it more marketable because it’s that presentable. Hopefully I’ll be able to find the right fit for its replacement.

One of my friends forwarded me an email she received from another which was a link to an online article recently published concerning the growing interest of our general public in contemplative prayer. I gave it a good read today, and was happy to find it now back in the limelight. Perhaps if all the more who’ve taken back-door exits from their communities of faith, would take the time to at least give it a try, as it doesn’t mean they have to leave their respective churches, but rather use it as a tool to deepen their existing spirituality.

I’m of the mindset far too many think of contemplatives as being those who’d give up all their material possessions and run off to far-away monasteries and never to be heard from again. No, that’s something you’d likely see in the movies with all the trappings of life in the Middle Ages. As a beginner, the only “tools” you’d need, is a quiet, comfortable and darkened corner, along with a little self-help guidance which would then send you on your way. The only encouragement I give, is to remain open-minded.

Speaking of religion, several days ago I was asked to start playing again for St. Paul Lutheran’s Services, and the first Sunday I’ll be accompanying them this month, is January 10th. I stopped over to their office and picked up their list of music along with spending about a half hour getting myself re-acquainted with their vintage pipe organ. Oh how the many months have flown by since I’d last played for one of their Services.

Before leaving, I stopped back at their office and announced to their secretary that for the strangest of reasons, I was far more comfortable playing it than I’d ever been, which I found most remarkable. I couldn’t help saying, “I think the old girl missed me enough to were she’s now doing everything she can to keep me coming back.” She thought it quite the possibility. I know that absence doth make the heart grow fonder, but perhaps in my case, absence doth make my “weak” abilities stronger.

With my real estate work completed, I decided to change my clothes and get back over to my stripping project. In spite of it being a tedious job, I fully enjoy my completely quiet time alone to where I have an opportunity to do some deep thinking along with discernment. Those several hours went by faster than expected, and when looking back, I could see definite progress having been made.

After getting back to my office, I arranged for another showing tomorrow of a home in Clear Lake. I’m hoping it’ll be a pleasant day to where the home will appear better than it did the last time we were there. As it’s been with some of my own listings, that home is in great need of some tender-loving-care which most buyers are refusing to do which unfortunately leaves them on the market for months on end.

I did have a long-overdue chat with a young man I sold a home to about four years ago. He’s also thinking about selling, and now wondering what value-added improvements he should be making to get top-dollar. I did give him my “nickel” windshield appraisal on what it’s now worth, but insisted he not hold me to it until I’ve done a good inspection and market research. I teasingly said to him, “Since I’ve not seen you for so long, you haven’t grown fat during this pandemic?” He laughed when replying, “Well, I have put on a few pounds but doing everything I can to not gain any more.” I couldn’t help sharing with him how all the many have grown noticeably larger and not being age or gender specific. I do know from past experiences with others that when most are stressed, they tend to eat more, and likely due to nervous frustration. Unfortunately, I take after my grandmother because whenever she was stressed, she’d quickly drop the pounds. As much as I would’ve liked to visit with him more, I had a ringing phone to answer. Before hanging up I said, “Welcome to 2021, and wishing you the best of it.”

Tonight’s One-liner is: Most people really don’t want freedom, because freedom involves responsibility, and most people are frightened of responsibility.

Joe Chodur

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