Honey We’re Home!

After over 5,300 miles, five separate living accommodations, dozens of prospective homes viewed, thousands of kilometers driven around the countryside, nine trips to Ikea, numerous interactions with the Portuguese bureaucracy, living without WiFi for over a month, fifteen arguments about whether the GPS was telling us to veer slightly right or stay straight within the three seconds allotted between the decision and running straight into the divider, countless cappuccinos and pastries (setting us back only a couple of bucks each time), and just a few batatas consumed… we are home.IMG_4614

We love our new house. It’s in the countryside, where it is amazingly quiet. Well, that is until you go outdoors, where you can hear dogs barking, birds chirping, a turkey warbling, a rooster crowing, bees buzzing, and a continuously annoyed goose honking from just up the road. But as soon as you walk back inside, the blood coursing through your ears is about the only sound you hear. Unless it’s at night when either of us can hear the other snoring. I think we’re alternating snoring nights, but I’m sure I have a few more than her.

We’re busy furnishing the house right now, so inside pix will have to come later, as well as an opinion piece about Ikea, which alternates from heavenly shopping and appreciation of its genius, to looking at the 154 pieces intended to make a nightstand and calling the manual the Instructions from Hell.

Carolyn predictably wanted to change the wall colors, so we decided, being retired and all, we’d just paint it ourselves. The bathroom ceilings were an awkward light blue, so that was the first on the agenda. I taped the walls, stirred the primer, dipped the roller, and proceeded to drip whiteness everywhere except the blue ceiling. Any primer that happened to stick to the ceiling only served to make the blue just slightly lighter in streaks. The rest of the blue more or less spat off the primer, as if taking offense to the idea that we wanted to cover it up. It was having none of that, and the thin primer was complicit.

The stuff was so thin that I spent more time trying to catch the drips than rolling more of it onto the ceiling. After only about eight rolls, we decided to bring on the calvary.

We are very fortunate in that the seller of our house was a very detailed English gentleman who left us awesome notes about everything we need to know about the house, including who painted it for him in the past. So we rang up Luis, he showed up the next day to talk about it, and the day after he’s waxing paint poetic on the walls. Best money we’ve spent so far!

Luis saves us from an eternity in Hell due to all the swear words we didn’t have to utter. On the right is the old color, on the left the new.
Our crack transition/realty team celebrating the purchase of our home. We couldn’t have done it without them, and in addition, we have lifelong friends in the bargain.
This is us toasting our new apartment. We kinda didn’t get around to doing the same thing in the house because we have been near exhaustion getting everything taken care of. We’re working harder in retirement than when we were working! And the pay sucks!
Carolyn enjoying her one-course dinner at our makeshift dining table.
This is the view from my office in the attic. You can barely make out the line of the ocean there, but it’s there. If you were to take off as the crow flies and fly some 4,000 miles, you’d land in Brazil, with virtually no land in between.
Carolyn has really turned the corner into becoming Portuguese. After insisting that we needed to have a clothes dryer no matter what, she’s finding out that the air drying thing really does work! It’s faster, cheaper, and very green! To the left is our very own lemon tree… I’m enjoying hot water with lemon wedges just about every morning.


This is the view that greets us when we leave our little street to head toward Sesimbra. In the distance is the west side of Lisbon, which includes Cascais. In front of that is a long, beautiful stretch of beach that has been called the most beautiful in all of Europe.
I had to run an errand to the local hardware store about 10 minutes away to get a part Ikea forgot to include, and when I was turning the car around, I spotted a little road and decided to see where it led. Five minutes later, I had this view of Sesimbra. We haven’t even begun to explore!






2 thoughts on “Honey We’re Home!

  1. At long last, huh? What it took to get to this point even happens in the US at times but no one is willing to fess up to it!
    Looks great and IKEA my favorite, soon Carolyn will have a real table huh?
    Sounds great my friends


  2. Beautiful! We are so excited for you and happy that you are finally settling in. Pictures look great. Can’t wait to see Carolyn’s handy work. Keep us posted now that you have WiFi.

    Trish and Jeff


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