Too much time indoors?…

A beautiful white lily in the garden of our holiday home in Campanario, Madeira.

There’s no doubt about it: we’re spending a lot of time in our hotel room. It’s somewhat like an apartment with a living room, bedroom area, kitchen, and roomy bathroom, with the convenience of daily maid service. All we have to do is dishes, using the full-sized dishwasher, and do our laundry every Friday.

Our free time is abundant without a garden, lawn to mow, house to maintain, oil changes, and shopping for household goods. Monthly, we pay off our credit cards online, review retirement financials, and annually, prepare expenses for our accountant in Nevada to do our taxes.

We never go to Home Depot and seldom visit Costco when buying in bulk is not in our wheelhouse. On July 1, Tom has a hearing aid appointment at Costco, but other than that, we had little reason to visit the crowded warehouse store packed with items we didn’t need.

These days, while waiting for my upcoming appointments at Cleveland Clinic at the end of August, we have little to do other than shop for a few groceries here and there and get together with family and friends. I have no interest in shopping for clothing, knowing I’ll only be wearing pajama bottoms and button shirts for months after the surgery. I’ll purchase the items I’ll need from Amazon when the time comes, never having to go to a store.

As a result, we have little reason to be outdoors right now. It’s been raining most days since we arrived. As much as I’d like to walk outdoors, the uneven pavement presents a tripping hazard for my unsteady gait. Instead, I do steps indoors in our room, often standing in place, setting my phone timer to remind me to get up from sitting for extended periods.

We cringe when we talk about how much time and effort it took to get our home ready for spring and winter in Minnesota and how doing so monopolized most of our free time. I recall the angst I felt over knowing I had to get down on my hands and knees and plant flowers each year when it wasn’t ever an interest of mine.

Tom worked 12-hour days with two hours of driving time, leaving little time and energy for home projects. But, he, too, lived up to the responsibility of outdoor home projects while I handled the indoor tasks, washing windows, keeping the house clean and free of clutter, and on and on.

I know many enjoy doing all the tasks and have done so with enthusiasm. But that type of enthusiasm was beyond our reach, although we were both relieved when the tasks were done. We did them all. Now, having the freedom we’ve had over the past 12 years has fulfilled us in a way that is hard to explain.

We commend and recognize those who accomplish these tasks with joy and dedication and are proud of their finished work. We have always longed for more time to enjoy our home and its beautiful surroundings freely. Instead, now and especially over the past years, we’ve cherished our free time and our surroundings, but on a much larger scale…the world.

We are grateful for our experiences in all areas of our lives, including those before we began traveling and time spent with family and friends, which will remain constant. But, for now, the simplicity of our nomadic lives, whether indoors on a nice day or not, continues to be fulfilling in many ways.

Be well.

Photo from ten years ago today, June 6, 2014:

This was the remaining tuna the truck fish guy in Campanario, Madeira, cleaned and cut for us after we gave Judite, our housekeeper, a good-sized bag, some of which we’ll cook over the next few nights. We sealed the remainder in Ziploc bags and froze them for future meals. For more photos, please click here.