Since the beginning of May 2018, I have been homeless. Not literally true because I have been living with my daughter while buying another property I hope to call home in the same delightful little Georgian market town in the West Midlands. What I mean is that I have not been in control of my own ‘four walls’ for the first time in twenty years after arriving back in UK from Cyprus where my husband and I had hoped to retire until his untimely death left me longing to be back where I felt I belonged.
There were the same anxieties at that time, but the period of gestation was not so prolonged; once the right place had been found in Carmarthenshire, surveyed and then bought, I was able to move in while the refurbishment was underway, and all was plain sailing amidst the usual paint, dust, detritus and debris. But the place was habitable and we, my three dogs and two cats settled following their six months in quarantine, so that a few months down the line we were able to welcome some old friends as our first house guests for Christmas.
This is my eighth move and has to be among the worst of all those experiences; but thankfully, time has intervened so no pets to worry about. It didn’t look all that daunting initially; nothing that some cosmetic refurbishment and a few coats of paint would not render inconsequential. The reality has been so different with unexpected hitches, not revealed by the house-buyer’s survey, appearing – and each having to be overcome. So, some eight months after the initial move, I am no nearer living at the house I have bought than I was when I bought it. I am aiming to have the place habitable by 1st March, but the ‘getting-there’ will be a steep upward grind that is going to need all the resourcefulness and resilience gained over the last eighty-two years of getting on with my life – so here’s looking to St David’s Day 2019.