We are living in temporary housing surrounded by suitcases and boxes…feels very strange being in someone else’s house. When I said we would be exploring in our retirement, this was not exactly what I had in mind – but still, it was fun opening cabinets and closets to find treasures.
We have chosen a space where you could realistically live full time – it’s really very nice with a good sized living room and adjoining dining area, a full kitchen and all the appliances you need; it has a washer and a dryer, a large bedroom and walk-in closer and a good size bathroom.
Our hosts have provided every amenity: coffee, creamer, sugar, salt and pepper, cooking oils, tin foil and plastic wrap, garbage bags, paper towels, etc. All the dishes, cutlery, glasses and cups, etc. are brand new. In the bathroom, there is a full supply of soaps, shampoos, conditioners, toilet paper, etc. The linens are all fresh and clean. It has a lovely patio to sit in with lots of plants and greenery all around. It’s all very comfortable and inviting.
But still – it’s not home…which is rather peculiar, since we don’t have a home right now! We sold last month, stored our favorite things, packed our bags and here we are. It took about a day or so to acclimate to a smaller space with a different routine. We do very little cooking – mostly take-out, we buy smaller amounts of food and other items for our daily use.
What is even more startling is when my laptop flashes pictures of our former home – I’ve taken pictures of all the rooms along the years as we redecorated and during family gatherings. The dining room where all the bookcases aligned the windows and the two tables that were joined together to create one long holiday table is my favorite because it reflects the happy family faces as they enjoyed my home-cooking and gave thanks.
I told myself and then Zaf, get used to it!
We are vagabonds for the next 8 months…going to Greece and Southern Europe, it will be hotels all the way; most offer breakfast with the price of the room which is indeed enjoyable as you sit on the balcony or patio and look at the view of the blue, blue sea or the majestic mountains. The perfect settling to pour over brochures to see what we should explore that day.
It does tug at my heart on some days when I see those photos – nonetheless, the die is cast. We are on the first leg of our retirement journey. What we planned over the last two years is finally here. Yikes! And Yeah!
Retire well, Helene 😊
Photograph of Zaf’s suitcase from The Personal Collection of Helene and Zaf
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