In the week and a half before leaving for Nice, all kinds of stuff started happening. There was a fire in our coop building in New York City. This made us worried about damage, but also gave us a couple who wanted to rent our apartment – neighbors whose apartment had to be gutted. But then they were worried about water damage/mold that might affect our apartment, so they backed out. So we went to our insurers and got the building to hire a mold specialist who said we were okay. So the couple reconsidered and is now in the apartment.
In our Pennsylvania house, the furnace conked out. Twice. This required replacement of multiple parts. The chimney sweep said he saved our lives by pulling out fallen terra cotta liner from the chimney flue and installing stainless steel. Then there was a shortage of the antifreeze that we needed to put in our baseboard heating system, so that got changed the day before we left.
So, mere weeks before leaving, instead of packing in a calm and organized fashion, and practicing French, we were dealing with insurers, mold experts, furnace experts, plumbers, chimney sweeps – and biting our nails over the Presidential election.
So was the universe telling us not to go? (Stay home! All hell is breaking loose here!) Were we being tested? (How much do you really want to do this?) Was our intelligence being tested? (Of course you shouldn’t go – you need to stay here and make sure your assets are secure!)
But the universe giveth and the universe taketh away. (See: tenants who backed out, then came back. See: market down, euro down.)
And in the end, sometimes you just have to push onward. And we did. This was a goal of ours– to live in a foreign country, not just be tourists.
So we stayed up until 2 AM packing – like we always do.
And here we are.