Here’s the thing – when you’re snowshoeing up into the alpine and it’s cloudy and grey, you are surrounded by beauty: white, snow-covered and hoarfrost-clad trees – and all those ghost trees, skeletons reaching for the sky – it’s a beautiful place to be. I can recall snowshoeing to the top of Crowe Mountain with Simon two years ago – our first time up there – and the cloud cover was so thick we couldn’t see more than 8 or so feet in front of us – and both of us were gasping with the beauty of it all.
This is not quite the case down here where it’s raining, and dripping and the ground is soggy underfoot and – well – its just dark and gloomy. Case in point: it’s just after three p.m. as I write this, and all the lights are on because it’s that dark.
Is this part of the reason I am also feeling gloomy inside? Probably. That and several other issues. We went to Wendy’s house today – a house she is selling that was built over time by an artist and a craftsman – a house that is unique and quirky and very beautiful. But we can’t afford it and it’s part of a commune type arrangement that just wouldn’t work for us.
It was, however, food for thought.
Right after that, our realtor dropped by. She is relentlessly cheerful, positive and hard-working and I feel blessed to have her on our team. But here’s the thing, whenever Simon and I speak to anyone about our house, they invariably ask about our future plans – this is understandable. I would ask us the same thing. In fact, I do.
And my bottom line answer is, “I don’t know.”
I have so many viewpoints on this problem that are competing for attention.
Viewpoint one: I never did like the Slocan Valley (I love the alpine!). I would rather not have moved here. But I am here and I have come to know it and I think I could make it work lower in the valley and, at the same time, I don’t ever want to live in a place again where it’s an effort to be happy. I never again want to say, “I can make it work.”
I’ve moved around too much. I’ve been in this situation of buy and fix up and sell and buy and renovate and discover this place is really not for me – too often. I feel so damn done with that.
Simon and I both want a forever home. For Simon that place is probably Nova Scotia. For me – well, there’s no alpine in Nova Scotia. And the only place I’ve ever really loved in this entire country is the West Coast. I miss it a lot. I miss being way out there, having the ocean near, the colour green – the long springs. I miss it.
And then there’s the viewpoint of, “We can’t afford it. Vancouver Island was once a great place to live but now prices have gone through the roof as it becomes the number one choice for Canadians to retire.
And then I’m left with wondering what to do when we sell. And I don’t know. Simon and I sometimes glibly talk about well, we may have to part ways – one of us goes to one coast and one to the other. And it seems like such a simple solution. It’s not. We can talk about it easily but it’s never a simple or a happy thing to tear out your heart.
And then, in the end, my choice appears to be a place I love or a man I love.
And it truly, truly sucks.