The Z in the willows

I should start by saying that I’m really just thinking aloud – if that is an expression one might use about blogging – and thoughts and hopes I mention here might not be what I opt to do in the long run.  I’m not usually one for the pipe dream, being rather more grounded in reality, but it makes me feel better, to think that I might come to a future that I choose, since my present situation is obviously not one that I want at all.

Tim’s observation that one should move ‘to’ rather than ‘from’ is absolutely valid, yet doesn’t tell all the story.  There are many reasons for moving from a place or a situation and it might not even be dissatisfaction with the status quo.  For example, I know a number of people who are stuck in houses that are far too big for them, too expensive to run and they realise that they should have downsized years before, when it was a practicable option.  That is at least part of my reason not to wish to stay here.  Thinking five years ahead and assuming good health, I would still be able to manage but the place would dominate my life.  It’s a fair bit of work and I don’t have the strength for all of it, so have to employ people to do the heavy work. I don’t feel able to just shut up and go away, I have to have a house-sitter.  Much as l like to be surrounded by fields, I’m a fairly long way away from any neighbours and there’s no one to notice if I don’t draw the curtains back or take the milk in (there is at present with Roses next door, of course).  This is fine now, but the time will come when it won’t be.  If I leave it another ten years, I might well be struggling to manage and I’ll wish I’d left when I could have done it more easily.   In twenty years’ time, if I’m still alive – oh dear, what a worry it would be to my family, having me live in this big house on my own.

I’ve been thinking about my options – the wider the choice, the harder it can be to decide – and my inclination is firmly to stay in Norfolk.  I like it here and all my children live here.  I love Norwich and would like to live closer – however, I’ve also got to know the Broadland area and it’s lovely.  So I felt that my choice was likely to be in a village just on the outskirts of the city, on the south side, or else north east of the city, a bit further out, possibly in a village but nowhere off the beaten track.  Then I saw that lovely house that Weeza’s friends have moved to and it made me think again and I realised how much I always loved living near water.

It was something I thought I would miss when I moved here, 28 years ago.  I lived by the seaside then and had grown up by the river.  I never lived more than a quarter mile from a body of water.  This place had many compensations and I didn’t miss the seaside as much as I expected because I loved it here – but now my options are open again.  One of the things I’m taking into consideration is how much my grandchildren would love it too.  I’m no swimmer or sailor, all I really enjoy is simply messing around in boats – and out of them.   I like lakes and rivers more than the sea and I like backwaters most of all.

I mentioned this to Roses and she said darkly – “three words – risk of flooding,” which was rather less constructive than I’d expected.  Actually, most of this village (though not this house) is reckoned to be at risk of flooding, not that it ever has.  Our further field has flooded twice in forty years, but it’s part of the Waveney Valley flood plain, lots of land alongside the river is covered in water for part of every year.  Clearly, I’d not choose a house that was at risk, but actually a house by the river is not necessarily more so than another, further away but low-lying – or  lower lying than its neighbours, anyway.

This might not happen anyway and it’s a while away, but it’s not impractical and it is something lovely to sustain me for now, which is what I can really do with.  I feel lost, when I stop and think about it, which is a good reason not to do so.  And I should say that my daughter and sister, both of whom I’ve mentioned it to, think that it’s a jolly good idea.

4 comments on “The Z in the willows

  1. Dinahmow

    I think your final paragraph speaks volumes.
    Yes, it would be a “big move.” But across the county is not quite like the far side of the world. Just don’t go too close to Sandringham or you’ll have all those dreadful tourists! 🙂

  2. janerowena

    It’ll come, eventually. One day you, and the house will be ready to part company and just the right house will turn up. One of my sisters moved out only this week from her lovely big house in Rickinghall, to a much smaller one in Avebury, where she had always thought that she would like to go, but could never imagine how such a move could fit in with her life. Now, many years later, it has all slotted in seamlessly, as if by magic. I shall miss her, but I know she will be very happy down there.

  3. sablonneuse

    Goodness, what a lot of catching up I’ve had to do. Is it that long since i read your blog?
    It won’t do any harm to consider your options about where to live as you are not pressed for time are you?
    It seems like a good idea not to rattle round in a big house when you get older and it’s very sesible to make the move before you reach a stage when it would be much harder to cope with the upheaval of moving.
    However, you can enjoy looking for yout ideal dream home without being under pressure to find something quickly. Enjoy your search!

  4. Z Post author

    I expect that I’ll try to sell before I even look for another house. I’d like to have the luxury of renting for a while – fewer responsibilities, try out an area to see if I like it and have cash in hand when I find the place I like.

    I don’t mind tourists actually, I grew up in a holiday town and, apart from staying home over bank holiday weekends, we never took much notice. But I’d not move there anyway, too far from Norwich.


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