Monday, 5 March 2018

Life Is About To Change

As some of you know we've been looking after young people in leaving care - so called Supported Lodgers. That was my way of earning a living. The latest lodger, 17 years old, was with us since October 2017. I felt very warm towards him and cared a lot. Just over a week ago, we had to discover that he had stolen my debit card details and had tried to buy items online amounting to over £1,200. We never have that kind of money on our account, so, those attempts were fortunately declined. I felt betrayed, heart-broken and shocked. How could a young man do such a thing when he had the opportunity to be safe, cared for and looked after; when he had been given the opportunity to start building a future for himself? Did he have no sense of sensibility? No respect? No conscience? Anyway - he had to move out the next day. It just didn't feel safe to have him in the house anymore. Within one day we lost our young person. We also lost my income of £1,000 monthly. That's when the penny dropped. The Universe was giving us another chance to jump. We decided not to take on another supported lodger and turn the small guest room into an AirBnB. We also spoke to our mortgage company in order to get a 3-month mortgage reduction. Ewan's salary would not be enough. But we decided that we'd let go of fear and have faith that everything would be okay, and that the house sale was going to happen soon.

Only a week later, last Friday, in the afternoon, we received that call that we had been waiting for since October 2017: Our estate agent gave us the good news that a first-time buyer offered us the (recently reduced) asking price, and that their lender had no issue with our house having concrete walls, and that they had a sufficient amount for the deposit. Wow! The moment I heard that I was actually not feeling much at all. My mind felt happy to hear this news. But it hadn't sunk in. When Ewan arrived home, a bit later, I held his hands, looked him in the eyes and told him. It was that moment we had been hoping for. Telling him the news made it more real for me and I started feeling the happiness in my body, but for Ewan it was the same like for me, it had to sink in. This is what it must be like to win in the lottery - quite unbelievable at first.

We hugged, we bounced up and down, and we decided to accept. I asked him to call the agent and let them know our decision.

When we walked into town later to go to "The Northcourt" to see "The Secret Police" (a "The Police" tribute band), we finally both felt it. Our lives had just changed dramatically. We were going to sell the house, and we'd have about 8 weeks to move. It felt and still feels amazing. This can only be a sign of having taken the right decision (unless we're delusional).

View from under Abingdon Bridge (down the river).
Views like this is what we're expecting to see every day around sunset from about May 2018.

Over the weekend we sat together at the laptop and looked for wide-beam barges. All the ones that we had been watching on "Apollo Duck" were sold or under offer; that was sad. But after a lot of research, we found 3 new ones that had most of our criteria, and we contacted the sellers for viewings. This Wednesday we're off to Reading to see a real big barge, and coming weekend we'll be off to see 2 more further away ones.

It's all of a sudden so much more real; our dream is coming true. Apart from a few of our closest family, everyone is so happy for us, it's wonderful. And those who are not amused are just worried about us, I guess, which is understandable from their point of view. They do wish the best for us, but they also seem to think they know what's best for us 😉

Our thoughts are now circling around what we need to do in order to make this move as smoothly as possible. We need to find an affordable solicitor. We need to put more energy into clearing out, especially the man shed and the kitchen. We need to start thinking about what can already go into boxes and what we will need until the day we move. There is so much more letting go of  'stuff'; and we decided that all our CDs must become files on our hard drives, so that we can give them to charity. That in itself seems an impossible task, but Ewan is on it. We will only keep what adds value to our lives. And some memories we want to keep are going into safe storage.

We've been good at sorting things out.
Lots more to do.

Finding the right boat  shouldn't be a huge problem. But will it still be available to us, when we 'exchange'? That really does feel scary, and I keep having to stop worrying about it. All we have is faith that everything is going to fall into place smoothly now. Last time I took a huge decision like that (moving to the UK), it turned out to be the best thing I'd ever decided. So, if the heavens are with us, this will turn out equally perfect.

It's an adventure - it's a jump into cold water (as we say in Germany).
But - Together we're strong.

We'll keep you posted.