“All the leaves are brown
And the sky is grey
I went for a walk
a wintersan autumn day.”
Mamas and the Papas, California Dreaming
I can’t tell you how many beautiful things I have let go of, passing them on to young friends hoping they will enjoy them for as many years as I did. I often need to remind myself that I am doing this – downsizing – in order to follow my wanderlust.
Occasionally there are items I miss, but mostly it’s been great. I saved the things I use that are right-sized for a gypsy life. Especially those that have a story, like this old Crown Ware muffin tin.
Years ago, I went to stay with a dear friend outside of Santa Fe as I sorted out my life. We took long walks in the arroyo. We took that delightful trip to Ojo Caliente. And one morning I awoke to a blanket of snow enveloping everything. It seemed to be a sign to make a fresh start. I came home renewed.
While I was there, I found this tin in a thrift store and it reminded me of a cast-iron cornbread pan my maternal-grandmother had. Now this tin reminds me of my friend, and how much more enduring our friendships and memories are, than things.
Lately I’ve begun feeling a bit like Goldilocks. “How so?” you ask. Well, I’ll tell ya. The hunt for our motorhome has begun in earnest, and I’ve cozied up to of lots of motorhomes looking for one that is just right.
On some we loved the colors, but the interior choices didn’t work. Some looked great, but they were smoked in and they smelled. Some weren’t well-maintained and in others the mileage was too high. We finally narrowed it down to two manufacturers, a model, a length, and an age range. Now that we know what Just Right looks like, we’ve built it, so it will come.
We also made the decision to jump in and go “full-time,” living in it rather than maintaining a small home, too. This requires a final “down-sizing event,” but we can deal with all of it now, or leave it for someone else to deal with when we go to the Big Party in the Sky. May as well do it now.
Our lease is up in seven months, but we are giving ourselves only five to have everything in place. That feels just right. . .and gives me some leeway!
Wanderlust: A strong, innate desire to travel. A love of experiencing new things.
Our house has sold, and we moved 12 days ago. Everything happened more quickly than we expected and we worked harder than we have ever worked in our lives in order to downsize, get out, and leave everything immaculate for the new owners on time.
At midnight one evening I joked with my sweetheart, “It’s kind of like Survivor, or boot camp, huh?”
“No. I’ve been to boot camp, and I’d rather do that again.”
Our new, much smaller, place is taking shape but we still have too much stuff.
Next goal: Sell more. Gift more. Donate more. Discard more.
We both feel our energy and excitement returning.
We are already experiencing pay-offs for all of our grueling work.
Soon we will be free to travel and to experience new things.
Our wanderlust beckons. Does yours? Will you answer?