Our decision to simplify our lives and travel for a few years left us giddy, our friends speechless and our children baffled. The pieces fell into place so quickly that two months after announcing our plans we are packing boxes, parting with long-treasured furniture and artifacts and placing a beloved pet with a new family. The house sold in one day! More than a little anxiety nibbles around the edges of our delight.
“The Plan,” developed as we were enjoying our evening drinks in the outdoor living room of our dear friend Sally Gibson’s luscious house in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. We have been visiting that Colonial Mexican city for many years and have owned a couple of properties there in the past. The place is magical and encourages fanciful thinking and the notion that all things are possible. The group of friends we have developed there are fascinating, well-traveled, accomplished people whose company we always crave. We feel very much at home there and will make it one of our refuges.
The initial “what if” conversation began as we sipped our drinks and watched the January sun fade over the mountains in the distance. Golden rays licked the small graceful statue overlooking the rock lined pond. A cheerful blaze crackled in the outdoor fireplace, and we began to chat about how much we love to be on the road, discovering new places, meeting people with stories to tell, and embracing languages and cultures not our own.
We learned that for fear of hurting one another’s feelings, we had kept our desires for one more big adventure from each other. Each of us thought the other was content with our situation, and the truth was a revelation. The instant we confessed “The Plan” began to take shape.
The first concern was money (the underlying reality of great plans from love affairs to war). It turned, out after some number crunching and deep and meaningful conversations with our financial advisor, that it’s less expensive to sell the house (even at a slightly depressing loss) and live like the locals in the places we want to explore than to continue meeting the overhead in Paso Robles.
We settled on Argentina as our first destination, with a three month stop in San Miguel just to get reorganized and oriented to our new lifestyle. We’ve rented a darling apartment in a great section of Buenos Aires and will make short trips around the country during our stay.
We have arranged to rent a house in Cambria, California, where two of our daughters and many friends live, for May and half of June. This will give us time to solve the minutia – bank accounts, drivers’ licenses, travel insurance, and also make plans for our movements for the next couple of years.
Tim is the travel meister. He is in touch with every home rental company, airline, car rental agency, ferry operator and hotel chain in the world and spends much of his time waiting for the computer to catch up with his hot pursuit of all of the above.
Currently our plan is to leave Cambria June 15, fly to Florida to visit daughter Amandah and her husband Jason and little Sean. We’ll return to LA, visit with our dear friend and innkeeper Kaye Lewis for a few days, and then hit the road.
You’re welcome to come along for the ride and we’ll try to post with photos when we have things to share which might be of interest to you.
For now, it’s back to the mundane part for us.