In the end leaving the old house wasn't as sad as anticipated. The weeks of packing, cleaning up, giving the garden its final grooming and watering the roses for the last time, followed by the exhausting day of the actual move, went by in a blur. When we handed the house over to its new owners it was just a house, the things that had made it our home for so long were no longer there and I knew that I wouldn't be looking back.
By Friday evening all our possessions had been delivered to our new home in Betty's Bay and we sat out on the verandah at sunset drinking a toast to the start of our new life.
The next day my husband and I had to go back to Cape Town on business and while we were away my two lovely daughters and my darling sister descended on the house, unpacked boxes, arranged furniture and made up the beds. Whenever my sister asks me for a favour she always begins the question with the words "Above and beyond, my dear" and this was certainly above and beyond anything one sister can do for another.
My two gorgeous daughters relaxing after their hard work
After nearly three weeks of hard work and frustrating struggles to get the internet up and running, I'm happy to report that the house is looking like it belongs to us.
The paintings still have to go up and that's going to be a difficult task in itself; there's very little wall space so we're going to have to be highly selective, but the many windows, each affording beautiful views, will make up for having to pack away so many pieces. Some window blinds and curtains need to be bought but by and large the views are too lovely to hide. Rugs and a nice old kitchen table and chairs are on the list but those are minor details and there's plenty of time to think about them.
The Aussie daughter had to return home after a week but she fell in love with the place and plans to bring her husband and our two grandsons over next Christmas. It was wonderful for her to be able to see our new home and with the help of What's App we're keeping her well abreast of all the progress. Before she left, we celebrated in true South African style with a braai ...
... and watched the magnificent sunset.
We had lots of doubts whether we were making a wise decision moving from the city to a small seaside village but, settled in now, as we gaze at the mountains all around us and walk on the beach at sunset we know that this was right for us. No more traffic noises, emergency vehicle sirens, house or burglar alarms, just the sound of the sea and wind and the surprisingly loud singing of the hundreds of birds attracted to our beautiful garden.