I made a decision today about my housing situation: I’m not moving. I’ve thought long and hard about this, and even said some deep prayers to the great divine, asking for help finding a safe, happy home for me and my crew. Today I realized that I already have one. So I have to commute a few days a week. Big deal! The dogs have a yard, the cats are safe going outside, we can hike in beautiful conservation areas a few minutes from my house, and I get to live in an incredibly beautiful place. Really, what more could I ask for?
I had a talk with my roommate and she has decided that she is going to move out and get her own place. As neither of us knows what we are doing in anything beyond the short-term future, it will be easier if we are not dependent on each other’s decisions. Furthermore, there is no work for her where we live. There’s no work for me either, but the house has a lot to offer me because of the animals, whereas she is not bound to such restrictions. So she is going to move to a nearby little town in May, and I’m going to stay put at least for the summer. And to be honest, if I stay for the summer, I will likely stay for the winter as well. I’m really hoping that I will find a permanent job after this next contract (ie. for July 2011) and that will definitely require a move. Why move in September and then again in June just to avoid commuting 2-3 days a week? It’s not worth the hassle.
This decision became clear to me this weekend after I spent some time house hunting. I went to the area I want to live in – ie. the location on the map that seemed the most convenient for work and dog training – and was sadly disappointed by what I found. There was one little valley that was really pretty, but the homes were gigantic and clearly very expensive. The rest of the area is very depressed. And worse than that, it is heavily industrially farmed. While I don’t mind living in a small house, a home that is cut out of a corn-field is not an option for me. This is what most of the houses for rent are like. The land owner (I won’t say farmer because often corporations own such land) cut out a quarter of an acre and put a house on it, or sold it to someone who did, and then GMO & heavily chemically sprayed corn or soy fields run right up to the garden fence. I can just picture my cats running out in the morning to chase a mouse and winding up dead from pesticides. I don’t relish the thought of what those chemicals will do to me either.
As I drove around, I became increasingly depressed. All I could think of is how much I didn’t want to live there. It was such a relief to get home. I live in a beautiful valley, at least a couple of miles from the nearest pesticide soaked crop, and right on the lake with a prevailing wind off the water. There is no truly healthy place to live within hundreds of miles of where I am currently situated, but my little home is definitely better off than many. My view is breathtaking, the location is safe for cats and I have enough property to let the dogs stretch their legs and play a little ball.
I feel really good about this decision. It feels right, and takes a lot of stress off my shoulders. I no longer have to house hunt, or pack, or move. Yipee! I’m so happy about that. There is a lot I want to accomplish this summer, and now I’ll have the time and energy to do my best to tackle it all. There are so many reasons to stay put that I don’t know why this wasn’t clearer to me sooner. But sometimes we have to go through this sort of process to appreciate what we already have.