I accomplished many things in Arizona. I bought my first house. I found "Olivia," my beloved 1980 Eldorado. I also started writing Goodbye to Beekman Place a few weeks after my sister's partner's suicide. I have good memories of living in the valley, and the only reason I left was because I sensed the housing market's collapse. I sold my place in January, 2006 and literally escaped the financial crisis by two months. Many of my friends lost everything in the recession. I was lucky, and though I had to leave when I did, I fully hope to return someday. Phoenix was beautiful, and extremely gay-friendly when I was there.
Finally, this is my fourth blog in a year about homophobia. I'm not a gay activist - far from it. I just want to live my life in peace, especially as I hit 45 in a few weeks. It saddens me that in 2014, I've seen so many instances of blatant gay intolerance: Sochi, Phil Robertson, Cermak in Aurora, and occasionally from neighbors. There are many in this world that I don't like, but rather than lashing out, I found it best to maintain respectful boundaries.
I encourage Arizona to do the same.