Friday, September 10, 2010

BIG NEWS! (September 10)

As many of you know, Rick and I came here with a careful decision-making plan about whether to move here.  We very much wanted to avoid any decision that we would regret:  67 is just too old for a big mistake like that.  The first part of our plan has been to live here this summer, and if we liked it to live here for an entire year before making a final decision (well, to the extent that any such decision can be final:  the best-laid plans, and so forth).  The summer is almost up -- we'll be leaving two weeks from yesterday -- and have rented a house for next year.  So far, all is according to plan.

This week we realized that there is honestly no point in putting off the decision any longer.  If you have been reading this blog even just occasionally, you will know how much we love it here.  Rick had no hesitation whatsoever, but I did and had to think it through.  We have agreed we each have veto power on all major decisions, the only fair way to go about it, I think.

A couple of considerations entered into my thinking.  As you may know, we have rented a wonderful house with a spectacular view over San Miguel.  The downside is that the "street" consists of stairs up the hillside.  It is possible that we will find that the stairs are just too hard (most likely it would be I and not Rick who would), in which case we would have to find another house to rent on a real street.  Moving again would cost money and hassle, but it's do-able.  We were at the house this morning, and here's a photo of the front of the house, with Rick and the landlady.

They are standing on the bottom (garden) terrace.  Above them you can see the terrace off the two top bedrooms.  Above that, not visible here, is the rooftop terrace.  I wish I could have gotten a photo of the full width of the house, more than 40 feet wide, but I would have had to back up so much the garden would have gotten in the way.  The round purple thing is a sculpture, by the way -- the owners had a gallery here in San Miguel.  And look at the masonry!  Do you remember I posted a photo of masonry in that style in July?  I think it's so beautiful.

The second consideration was harder.  I have been sick quite a bit this summer, which is very unlike me. I had some kind of flu-type thing and later parasites.  Each lasted quite a while.  Although I suspect the illnesses were coincidental, I thought about whether I would want to live here if I am not as healthy as I normally am back home.  I gave it a lot of thought.  I finally decided that the life here is so wonderful that I would rather be well part-time in San Miguel than well full-time back home.  Although frankly I think it's unlikely that I'll be sick as much here in the future, it's best to take a worst-case scenario as the basis for a big decision.

You are probably thinking about health care.  We have Medicare in the US, of course.  We will maintain our Medicare supplement insurance and will go to the US for any big procedure that is foreseeable.  For routine and emergency care, both of which are available at high quality here, we will pay out of pocket (and it's cheaper here).  Of course it's emergency care that's the issue.  We're aware that it's a gamble but it's one we're willing to take in exchange for the benefits of living here.

So we are in the process of changing our tourist visa to a "long-term, non-immigrant" visa, called an FM3.  Instead of our previous plan to pack up all our furniture and store it in the garage to rent out the house, we will hire a mover and move it all here in December, and rent out the house.  The FM3 will allow us to bring in household possessions tax-free one time, so it's best to do it all at once.

We are very excited and very happy to be moving here for good.  Now you have an even BIGGER reason to come visit us here!


  1. That is truly big news, both seriously sad for those of us left behind and enormously happy for your next life adventure. I hope you will continue to describe and comment and observe, maybe turning it all into a book sooner than later.

    BTW, does this mean you are not coming home this fall or just that the To Do list will change for the few months you are here?

    What an auspicious way to start the year 5771. L'Shana Tovah in good health, joy, and continued growth.

  2. Here's to your next adventure! On my office wall, I still have that picture of you in the driver's seat of the rental truck smiling big time as you set off to Seattle to get more of what you wanted out of life. Once again I salute your courage and wish you much joy!

  3. This is so exciting--and you bet we are coming! I will miss you, but given how I am flying now, this may be no different really! I love that you are both so happy!

  4. Wow. I am so happy for you and Rick. This all sounds so amazing. I am glad it is working out so well!