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Published: November 8th 2015
Traveling Backwards 3
Several months ago I put my house in England on the market. It was something of a knee jerk reaction to the fact that my tenants of more than five years were moving out, and also an attempt to distance myself from some very difficult and troublesome neighbours. To my surprise, the house had two potential buyers inside two weeks of it being marketed. But I got cold feet before the deal could go through, and withdrew the house from sale. It was difficult for me to make a final decision about selling my house in England while I was still living in Thailand. By coming back to my house for a few weeks, I was hoping that I could get a better understanding of my feelings for the house, its location - now in the wrong part of England - and my own situation.
I have to thank a good friend of mine - Tony - who some 15 years or more ago persuaded me to make the effort to move out of a pleasant but small rented room in a shared house, that I'd been living in for a couple of years,
and to buy a place of my own. I recall that his words were: "Your need to get out out there." As I've said earlier, I spent close to 10 years of my life, working evenings, weekends and holidays breathing new life into this old house. Living in terrible conditions at times and often being unable to see the end of such a huge undertaking, and at the same time keep abreast of a very challenging teaching position - Yeah, thanks a lot Tony!
We have kept in touch over the years that I've been traveling, and a few days ago I went to see Tony and his wife Pam, to catch up on old times and to renew our friendship. He had been very ill while I've been away and so it was good to see him back on his feet and tackling his new sport of golf with vigour. It was shortly after chatting to him that I came to realize that as regards living in this house in Staffordshire, it was time to move on. It's obvious really, I left this house in England so many years ago with no intention of living in
this country again. My only aim was to keep in contact with my daughter, and yet, I still kept hold of my house. True, the housing market was not good for selling at the time but even so .........
A meditation teacher many years ago pointed out in her dharma talk that we never let go of the 'ship' we wish to leave until we can get a firm hold on a lifeboat. So it's time to let go of this 'houseboat' and to tread some open water. With this decision made, I spoke to the estate agent yesterday and put the house back on the market. When I returned from shopping today there was a for sale sign attached to the front wall.
I feel that when you have done
something, there is no point in doing it again. There's nothing more to be gained; there's nothing more to be experienced. Nothing more to be learned, it's time to move on, time to let go. Living in this area, this wonderful house and its lovely garden is now d o n e.
I turned down a good offer when I stopped the sale
on this house, and who knows what will happen now? But that's the beauty of moving forwards, even though I had to travel backwards to see it and to talk with my old mate again. So thanks once again Tony.
I'd left some belongings in the attic of this house for the time when for whatever reason, I returned. I was totally impressed with myself when I entered the attic to discover that right by the door I'd left my kettle and a cup. Everyone knows that the English really enjoy a good cuppa after a long journey. So, buying some tea bags from a local shop on the way here was not a waste of time. This rising pride at the recognition of my farsightedness was followed by a very swift and thirsty fall, when I discovered that the box containing the kettle did not include the necessary electrical flex. Search as I may, I couldn't find this flex or make any sense of why I should have put it somewhere else. Neither did I have the luxury of being able to blame someone else, since the attic door had been locked since the day I'd
left. I've spent the past week boiling water in a pan whenever I've been in need of a hot drink. While waiting for the pan to heat up I would often view the kettle sitting there uselessly on the worktop with suspicion, incomprehension and shame. But today I took a closer look at something that showed white through the clear sight-glass on the side of the kettle. And yes, no doubt you've beaten me to this tale's conclusion. I had placed the flex inside the kettle so that it wouldn't get lost. A learning: if your going to do smart things, it's even smarter to remember that you've done them!
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