Finding Balance

Lately we feel we have reached middle ground. With the house sold, we are no longer home owners, and yet we are also not yet on the road. We reside here in the middle, in a place in between roots and wings. Our situation reveals that for all of the things we miss, there is another set of things we appreciate in this interim time, even as we anticipate hitting the road soon. Perhaps the perfect analogy for how life will be on the road; a juxtaposition of the things we leave behind and the things we gain from the leaving.

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Although I have no emotional angst at the thought of having left our house, there are certainly things I miss. I miss the two acres where the dogs could run freely. I miss my garden, which reached it’s zenith this year. I miss the dog door, OH how I miss the dog door. Mornings now require I actually put on clothes to take the dogs out to do their business, whereas before I simply opened the bedroom door for them to race out the dog door, announcing their awakened state to the neighborhood as they went. I miss our fantastic palapa, truly the reason we bought the house in the first place. I miss the general ease of life there.

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I do not miss IT, however. There has been not a single moment of doubt, wondering if we did the right thing. No single, solitary second where I have questioned this path we are on.

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And, as happens in all things, for every thing you miss, you gain something else in it’s place.

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In our cozy, temporary abode, we have downsized dramatically and still have more room than we need. I am relishing less STUFF. Although still burdened with more than I had hoped for at this point, there is simply less of everything and it makes my heart feel light. Our commute has been cut by nearly 40 minutes per day, truly cause for celebration!

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Although “town” has never been our preferred living space, our house is located across from a park, at the end of a dead end road, next to 40 acres of green space, absolutely marvelous for walking the dogs, hiking, and sitting on the front deck in the evening listening to the chorus of frogs.

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Living next door to Wendy & Ken has proven a blessing, making it easy to pop in for a drink or to say hi, although it may prove less a blessing for our livers at the end of our time in the neighborhood! We are walking distance from downtown Oregon City, walking distance to Dave & Anne’s and, for only the third time in the 27 years of living together, can entertain the possibility of PIZZA DELIVERY.

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Our lives today have some elements I may missย wayย down the road, but find little use for now. We need internet, of course, but sadly our antennae is not effective in this location and so we have cable tv. Never much of a fan, I find myself scrolling the guide, numbly being unable to find a single show of interest. Hundreds of channels of, well, crap basically. Oh yes, while I greatly enjoyed being able to watch a new episode of Pioneer Woman on the Food Network, ย I find myself reverting back to Netflix often. I have to laugh at my attitude, knowing full well that at some point down the road we will sit in a cheap hotel in a foreign country and spend a full day flipping through Spanish tv channels just for the sheer novelty of watching tv.

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Our routine has become somewhat set. Because of the dogs lack of a fenced yard, we have re-initiated the ritual of the morning walk. Aspen, ever up for adventure, and I are raring to go the minute the alarm flips over. Jim and Porter, not so much, and yet the whole family does an energetic 1 1/2 mile loop each morning encompassing both stairs and hills and we are all the better for it. The evening and weekend walks take us into the green space, where Aspen can run off leash and both have ample opportunity to sniff, mark, and release energy.

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Work on the truck and camper is in full force, with frequent Fed Ex and UPS deliveries of shocks, door locks, jerry cans and racks. I am shredding old documents and making photocopies of all of our important documents, all while fixing up the interior of the camper and determining the best material to use for new and improved camper cushions.

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It is an exciting time. When we first moved in we were both so exhausted from a challenging summer that we did not immediately appreciate the fact that this was REALLY HAPPENING. The dogs were happy to be with us but leery of new surroundings and schedules. Now that we’ve settled in, established a bit of a routine, and actually gotten in the camper for the weekend, equilibrium has returned.

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Our conversations now revolve around how much more money more we can save before we hit the road, of which project to work on next, on routes and border crossings and questions on vaccinations for ourselves and the dogs. Lists are made and re-made and checked off.

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Most of all we are practicing living IN THIS MOMENT. The sudden, and shocking, death this morning of one of my brothers good friends is a heartbreakingly perfect example of how important it is to live each day on purpose, not knowing when our own time is over. For now we will appreciate this middle ground and the love of those around us.

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6 thoughts on “Finding Balance

  1. An exciting time, for sure. We are at opposite ends of the spectrum as we are in the midst of a huge remodel on the home we just bought which sits on 5 acres. In some fashion I envy your upcoming nomadic ways, but in this chapter of our lives, Abi we like having a nest and now we have a nest just an hour away from our son and daughter-in-law rather than an entire country between us. Living on the east coast for the first time in our lives is a new adventure in itself, and we look forward to exploring the northeastern states. I smiled when I read your words about listening to Spanish television stations because when we were walking the Camino, we ached to hear an English-speaking channel just to get a bit of news, but it didn’t happen and I think maybe it wasn’t such a bad thing. I may not be remembering, but is it your plan to drive south through Mexico and South America? And you’re right, it will all happen when it is supposed to but I completely understand because even though we’re in the middle of this remodel, I am already figuring out where we can head as soon as we’re once again settled! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • oh boy Patti… a huge remodel on acreage! Sounds like you and Abi are in for your own sort of adventure ๐Ÿ™‚ Can’t wait to follow along as you make it your dream home. Yep, we’re driving to South America, planning on hitting every latin american country as we go. Good luck on the house.

  2. Sorry to hear about the shocking death, you are so right that these things serve as a reminder for us all to live every day fully. It sounds like your transition is going well and the dogs are adjusting too; I remember relishing having less stuff too, it’s so refreshing. Good luck with the planning ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Thank you Amy… a tragic incident for sure and yet it is a reminder that even a full life is quite short in reality. I am, if ever, a planner, so enjoying the list making and projects ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. It sounds like you and the dogs have settled quite well and have developed some good routines. A morning walk is a great idea and a good energetic way to start the day. My morning starts with a drive to my office or to the various clinics around West Dorset, most days I drive a lot and get very little exercise, so I envy your morning walk. I am glad your camper is coming on well, it is so exciting to think soon you will be setting off on a new adventure.

    • Thanks Gilda. I am a morning person and Aspen and I are LOVING walking morning and night. Jim and Porter, well, although they love it once they are up and moving it’s a challenge to drag them out of bed. I do know I’ll be slightly less enthused when the fall rain begins, but still a great way to start the day. What I can’t wait for is coming soon enough… when we can take our morning walk at 630-7am instead of 515am ๐Ÿ™‚

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