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Published: March 11th 2017
Spending winter back in the US? Yes, some thought we were crazy to come back to upstate NY in the winter, but a few things dictate that decision. One is the weather of course, not so much for when we are in the US, but the best times to be on the boat and moving! Yes, we enjoyed our 6 weeks in Paris and could definitely use more time to explore, but we want to travel through the French canals to the Med and need to wait for the spring and summer for that. We also want to spend time with family over the holidays and see some friends while in the US. Now that we own a house back in the US we have quite a few projects to complete on the list and winter is a good time to work on them.
We have been talking to others that have been cruising in Europe and found that it is possible to apply for long term visas which gives us the ability to take our time when we cruise down the French canals and enjoy places along the way to the Med. This has to be done back in
We came back in time to rake leaves
and of course work on getting the mower working!
your home country; therefore trips to NYC to accomplish this were also on the list of things to do when in the US.
Everyone told us that it isn’t that nice weather-wise in Paris during the winter and the boat will definitely get “chilly” with only a small space heater, so we booked flights back to the US in mid-November in time for Thanksgiving. We arrived back to the house to see plenty of fallen leaves on the ground so we started with cleaning up the yard. First step we found was to work on the garden tractor as it needed some “coaxing” with a little help with Bob and his tools.
It was nice to have the house to come back to so we were able to bring a few things off the boat that we found we hadn’t been using there. They seemed to be absorbed back into the house without a problem! It is interesting how we can live on a 40 foot sailboat with limited storage and then easily expand into a 3 bedroom house when back in the US.
The holidays were enjoyable as we were able to get together with family
members on both sides of the family. It was also fun to decorate the house for the holidays even if we still have insulation on the walls in the living room! Annual doctor appointments are the norm every time we return to the US and this year was no exception. Both Bob and I had been having a few new pains that we wanted to get checked out so we both were busy with some physical therapy appointments as well. Now we both have sets of exercises to do to keep those “pains” in check. Fortunately we were able to work with our therapist to adapt them to be able to perform them on the boat as well!
Bob worked on getting his woodshop set up the way he wanted to – for anyone that had seen his shop in Trumansburg you would be very impressed with this one as it is well planned out and organized with a great dust collection system. He has been working on his plans of where he wanted to locate his machines for quite a few months while still on Tsamaya as he wanted to be ready to put it in place when
Troy has some beautiful buildings
You don't have to go far from "home" to see them
we returned. With a few more tweaks to his plan he has worked it out to his liking - Bob is happy which means Janice is happy! With all his work on the woodshop I wasn’t sure if he would be willing to leave and go back to the boat, but recently he has even stated that he is looking forward to exploring Europe more – really good news with Tsamaya located in Paris!
The major project that we wanted to accomplish this winter on the house was working on installation of the radiant heating system. Definitely not a fun job as a few of the rooms have to be done by working on your knees in the crawl space, but those two rooms are now done. With the help of our niece’s son, Peter, we got 3 more rooms completed – that is great news as that means all but one room on the first floor is completed. We didn’t do any more in the upstairs as we have to hold off until we install a new beam in one of the rooms – that will be a job for next time we are back in the US
– something to look forward to indeed!
We want to take our time when we return to the boat cruising down the French canals to the Med. We decided that to do that legally we would apply for a long term visa for France. It meant filling out quite a bit of paperwork, getting some help from our friends in France and making two trips to NYC to visit the French consulate, but after all of that we were successful and now have a one year visa for France. Fortunately it will also be useful for other countries in Europe as well (those that signed the Schengen agreement) so we won’t have a problem when we cruise over to Italy once we enter the Med. We decided the best way to travel to NYC was by train making it much more relaxing. As our main mission was to deal with applying for the visa we didn’t have a lot of free time for other sightseeing, but we did have time for doing lots of walking. We took a look at it as we do other cities we have traveled through – enjoying the architecture, comparing the similarities (i.e. –
the rental bike systems, the food carts, fruit stands) and noticing the differences (skyscrapers are the norm in NYC). We did find that there is a place similar to the Promenade in France where an old railroad bed has been converted into a very popular walkway elevated over the city streets. We did get a chance to walk on part of it to get a taste of what it was like. It was a beautiful sunny day in NYC so it was quite crowded, but an enjoyable way to see a part of the city from a new height. Next time we are in NYC we will definitely put other parts of the “High Line” on our list of things to do.
It is hard to believe that our time in the US is almost over, but we now have our flight booked back to Paris. We will return there on April 5th
giving us some more time in Paris before we start this season’s travels down the French canals. It has been wonderful having time with family and getting a chance to visit some friends. Two of Bob’s previous students from Trumansburg made contact with him and connected
while they were up in Saratoga for a few days. That always means a lot to a teacher when previous students make the effort to connect - thanks Andy and Eric. There were many others we would have liked to have seen, but the time flew by so quickly - we will have to check in with them the next time we are back.
The newest member of our family just joined us on March 9th - Hannah Margaret Patton! It is great that we will be able to meet her before we head back to Europe - congratulations to David & Laura and "big brother" Gabriel. We are great aunt and uncles again!
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