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All I could think about as I stared out at beautiful Lake Oconee is that I’ve been a fish out of water for the past seven years.
My wife Bernie and I moved south from Pittsburgh seven years ago, first to Florida and, later, Atlanta. Make no mistake, we found much to like about both locales, but in all honesty, neither ever really felt like home.
Don’t ask me to explain it. Certainly the climate here tops that offered in Pittsburgh, and we’ve been welcomed with open arms by everyone we’ve met. But it has been as if our roots were never severed up north, which meant we simply weren’t able to put down fresh ones here.
That is at least until now. That all changed when Bernie and I visited the Del Webb at Lake Oconee community in Greensboro and fell in love immediately. It was for us like a scene out of the movie Cocoon: We figuratively jumped into the pool and came out feeling all fresh, new and exhilarated. (We wanted to literally jump into the pool but our agent, Nikki Howard, thought it would make a bad first impression since we were fully clothed.)
This place has everything we were looking for … and a whole lot more. The ambiance is so real that I almost expect to see Andy Taylor and Opie walk past my house and invite me to go fishing. We saw a holiday parade recently and I could have sworn Norman Rockwell was sitting on the sidelines capturing the whole scene on canvas. Believe me, the community is that genuine and the people already make me feel like I am perpetually walking into Cheers and my name is Norm.
It all sounded too good to be true when first described by the folks at Pulte Homes & Mortgage & Sales. We were looking for a nice place to live out the rest of our lives. What we found was a community whose motto seems to be “Live, Laugh, Love.”
We found a home.
Kudos to Nikki, who did Pulte proud by making us feel like we were the only clients she cared about. Maybe we would have fallen in love with Del Webb at Lake Oconee and our new home without her help, but I’m glad we didn’t have to find out. She was, in a word, terrific.
I honestly don’t know what to experience first. The scenery is breathtaking and the lake offers a variety of activities, from fishing and swimming to just walking along the shore to—if you’ll excuse my baby boomer, ‘60s hippy history—be one with nature.
But it doesn’t end at the lake shore, either. This is a community in the truest sense of the word, with a list of things to do that, if it were your bucket list, would keep you active well beyond your 100th birthday. Okay, I don’t know that I’ll sign up for the Sassy Stitchers or Sew Much Fun classes, but I’m looking forward to billiards, the book club, Theater on the Lake, Lakeside Sunset Socials, Bocce Ball, maybe even tennis, line dancing, table tennis and water volleyball.
The beauty is, I don’t even have to decide for myself: this place even has a lifestyles director. Can you believe it? A lifestyles director. Up until now, my lifestyle choices have been limited to deciding plain or pepperoni or whether to shower before bed or in the morning!
I truly feel that Bernie and I have entered a new and exciting chapter in our lives together. It wasn’t easy to leave Pittsburgh and all of our friends seven years ago, but that hole in our hearts is being filled nicely on the shore of Lake Oconee.
We are finally home, again.
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