A lot has happened in that year.
We have discovered that we don’t need material things and getting rid of our surplus ‘stuff’ has been a good thing.
We are no longer encumbered by things that we hoarded for no more reason than having them, and quite honestly I feel we are the better for it.
Speaking of better, we have survived a winter in a totally different environment and have remained healthy (albeit with a little excess poundage recently) living a life of simplicity. We are grateful that it was a mild one for our first, enabling us to find our feet, experiment and learn without wasting money or resources.
I have been able to visit my Mum on a regular basis which has thus put a lot of my emotional ‘baggage’ into perspective. To some extent that has given me peace of mind rather than my mind being in pieces from self doubt and not knowing what was happening, being kept in the dark, and being blamed for things beyond my control.
Do I miss the house ?
No, in all honesty, I don’t. I certainly don’t miss mowing the uneven lawn, fighting with fence panels after heavy winds, the noise from the main road, inconsiderate neighbours and the jets .
I miss the convenience of having a washing line and owning a washing machine though, and on rainy days being able to just let Maggie out in the garden for a wee instead of having to don full waterproofs and take her up to the dog walk to perform.
However idyllic you may think it is, Boat Living isn’t all peace and tranquility, river trips and enjoying Nature at close range.
There are fees to pay, licences to buy, boat safety certificates to pass and insurance is compulsory for taking any boat anywhere on the water.
For live-aboards like us, residential or not, there are also local taxes to pay.
It also entails maintenance, co-ordination and co-operation when working and living in a confined space, teamwork, tolerance, tidiness and making allowances.
It means thinking twice about buying anything, and instead of our previous
‘Do I want it?’,
‘Do I need it?’ and
‘Will my life end if I don’t have it’ pre-purchase questions to self, it is now
‘Can I wear it?’,
‘Can I eat it?’ and
‘Where will we put it?’
We have made new friends, people we would never normally have met, but there is no class distinction here, we are all simply Boat Owners. Everyone is friendly with no hidden agenda and happy to impart their knowledge, pass on the benefit of their experience and help out if they can if asked.