Final thoughts for the year

Title picture is me and Jessamine watching a train go by. He so loves trains.

This will very likely be the last post of 2022. Tomorrow we leave for the airport at 530am, and hopefully take off for the west at 7am on a United flight. It will be a strange end to a strange year.

Southwest tries to reboot itself today, after the most spectacular operations and systems crash ever experienced by a major corporation. They’re going to have huge expenses due to the holidays debacle, and then again huge investments to fix what is wrong. Ironically, SW was the most profitable airline in the industry for 2022, with about $579M in profits. I’m pretty sure fixing what is broken is going to cost them more than that. And pretty sure that they won’t lead the industry in 2023 profits.

But even more than the money, what SW lost this holiday season was trust – their reputation is damaged, badly. I’m the most loyal SW customer you can imagine, and I’ll enter 2023 looking for alternatives to SW flights for every trip. I don’t trust them any more. They used to be cheap and reliable, and now they are neither.

Returning to Socal will be bittersweet. I’ll miss the kids and grandkids. But there’s a lot that needs attention at our western home, so there will be plenty to do. And the weather for January in Socal is typically very nice. My golf buddies and I will take advantage of that.

The next big home improvement project will almost certainly be a home battery backup system, used mostly for defeating the SDGE’s very expensive time of use (TOU) rates. TOU has cut our solar roof savings by 50% or more. With a smart battery system, I think I can drive our electricity costs back to near-zero again, plus get some backup for short power outages. Frontrunner at the moment is Panasonic’s Evervolt system.

As for 2023 resolutions, I have three:

  • Write more
  • Exercise more
  • Drink less

Very general, and very doable. I’m already moving in those directions, so just continued awareness on my part is all that it will take. The personal trainer sessions we started last month (and continued while in KY, via Zoom) are a firm foundation for these resolutions. With exercise, I feel less stress. With less stress, I drink less. And with both of those in play, I’m in a better head-space to write. Win-win-win.

And on that thought, I’ll call it a year for the blog.