In June 1992, I moved to Arizona and stayed with Andy in his studio until I could get my own studio 10 days later. This was at the Vista Ventana apartment complex. I started in a ground floor unit. The guy next to me was a pervert and the guy above me was nice but walked like an elephant. I ended up moving into a second-story studio behind Andy and next to a lesbian named Andrea who drove me crazier than Mark and Robert had. She was Mexican, and they tend to have large families. So when she had her 15 little siblings over in her 400-square-foot place for the holidays, you could say it was like quite an earthquake hit the place.
The most memorable neighbors during the near year I lived at this complex, both good and bad, were Donna, Rosemarie, Ellie, Tonya, Tara, Rachel, Mary, Stephanie, Leslie, Randy and Kara. The manager Stacey was a real bitch and did some things that were overstepping her boundaries, but I had a crush on her nonetheless.
Before leaving this apartment complex I started working as an exotic dancer for several months, then eventually moved to a 2-bedroom apartment at the Crystal Creek complex. The guy who lived a couple doors down was a customer of mine that told me about it. This "friendship" soon ended when he proved to be quite a liar and just not who he said he was.
Right next to me was my future husband, Tom. Shortly after I moved in, he helped me move to the back of the complex in an identical apartment, away from the busy main road. At this time, he bought his brother's house. His new wife had a nicer home to move into.
The more Tom and I fell for each other over the summer, and the sicker I got of living attached to others, I decided to take a chance and move in with him in September 1993. It was a corner 2-bedroom house just a few feet from the neighbors, and as I would be quite dismayed to learn, people in houses aren't always quieter. In a culture that often forbade dogs as household pets but more like something you stored outside and brought food and water to, the neighborhood was filled with tons of barking.
When I first moved in with him there was a family next door with a couple of dogs, but they moved a month or two later. Next came a large Mormon family, followed by black welfare bums, followed by Mexican welfare bums. Each drove me progressively crazier. The last two did some horrible things to me and my family, but I'll skip that... for now. Anyone who's that curious can still ask me about it.
While we lived in Phoenix, I had surgery done to create an ear canal on my left side. I was born with it fused shut. I got a little bit of hearing, but not much. The main purpose of this surgery was to make sure I didn't have any tumors or anything nasty growing on the inside since I was having more and more sensitivity. The problem turned out to be the frame and that was dismantled.
In the late 90s, I ceased all contact with my family. He lost his father to lung cancer around this time as well. We would then be horribly used without much compensation by others in his family until we finally put our foot down, needing to hang onto our money and live our lives for ourselves.
For pets, we switched from having guinea pigs, mice, hamsters and gerbils to rats once we learned how intelligent and sociable they are. They're the cutest of the rodents too, in my opinion.
After about 18 years of smoking, I quit the ciggies in 1997.