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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Charting the future

Sandpoint woman resolves to seek new horizons in Spokane Valley

Lisa Wright stands outside her home in Sandpoint on Dec. 22. She plans to move to Spokane Valley in 2015 for less expensive housing and better job opportunities. (Kathy Plonka)
Lisa Wright stands outside her home in Sandpoint on Dec. 22. She plans to move to Spokane Valley in 2015 for less expensive housing and better job opportunities. (Kathy Plonka)

Lisa Wright is doing 2015 big.

After 35 years in Sandpoint, this 60-year-old baby boomer is uprooting her entire life and moving with her two dogs to Spokane in search of better work, cheaper rent and a new adventure.

“I feel like you can’t sit and grow old,” Wright said. “If you’re not where you want to be you have to do something else. I’m not afraid.”

Wright doesn’t know anyone in Spokane, yet thanks to the Internet and a few visits she’s found the perfect apartment in Spokane Valley – not a retirement facility, because this gal plans to keep working for the foreseeable future and wants to enjoy the mix and energy of living around people of all ages. She’s also looking forward to the fitness center and swimming pool. The place is new and safe.

The valley is a central location and close to walking and bike trails and tennis courts, activities that keep Wright fit and busy. There’s also more opportunity for entertainment, proximity to the airport and –for a woman raised in Hawaii – more sun and less hard weather than the more northern Sandpoint.

Mid-April is circled on the calendar for the big move, not really a New Year’s resolution but more of just the next step in life. It all depends on when her Sandpoint home of 11 years sells.

Wright initially moved to Sandpoint to live near her aging parents. Life changed dramatically for Wright in 2008 when the real estate market tanked and she lost her 25-year career as an escrow officer at a title insurance company.

Wright works seasonally at H&R Block and plans to transfer to Spokane. Retirement for her is not an option, really not even a desire. Besides the tax work, she hopes to get another part-time job at a retail store.

“I plan to work as long as I can,” she said.

An AARP survey released earlier this year found that 70 percent of Americans plan to work in retirement.

Like many boomers, Wright doesn’t feel older and muses, “When I say it it’s like a slap in the face, I don’t feel it” when she reveals her age. She said people shouldn’t be afraid to make changes, no matter their age. Find the courage.

Wright said her friends are supportive, adding that the move isn’t a wild hair but a realistic and well-planned decision.

“It’s not like I’m moving cross country,” Wright said. “I know and love Spokane.”

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