The Winds Of Change

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 8.56.47 AM“Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change.”

― Mary ShelleyFrankenstein

I’m waiting, these days, to hear whether I’ll be moving within the week. In the last fortnight, the two friends we’ve lived with since discovering this dreamy, alpine retreat have returned to France. We’re back to the UK for a visit in August and hoping to escape rent bills on top of travel expenses, so it’s time to go. Meanwhile, this lovely place has been put up for sale. Leaving early wouldn’t really be an issue if it weren’t for the fact we signed a fixed term lease, locking us into payments until the house is sold or the tenants replaced, but life’s a learning curve. And if we’d planned for the unanticipated, we would never have ended up living here at all, so I don’t regret it.

The cottage rattles emptily at the moment. It’s also, now the season’s changing, colder than any house has a right to be. But I’ll be so sad to leave it. Leaving conjures feelings the antithesis to those that flavoured the post I wrote when I was about to move here – Home Sweet Home. But I am still excited about the future, still hopeful, just in a more subdued way. I’ve achieved so much of what I set out to do while living here – I’ve built up the business over the last six months, I’ve launched a website, engaged with wonderful writers, edited valuable work. And I’ve written the-book-to-be. Admittedly, every waking hour that’s not spent working is being spent rewriting the damn thing, but I’m still on track to publish this year. So all the big bits of life are where I wanted them.

So why the melancholy? Although I like to be on the move, I don’t like moving. It takes so much time, so much effort, there’s so much mess, and I *hate* packing. Thankfully, a wonderful friend is taking us in, but we’re losing a place of our own and I don’t know when we’ll have another. I’ll miss my window seat study. I thought we’d be here longer, be more settled. I thought many things. I thought this was my perfect pad, a utopian dwelling where everything would go right and nothing wrong. Instead, many things have gone the least helpful of ways.

Queenstown is a funny and unique place. It’s a high-octane, beautiful bubble full of comings and goings. Everyone’s on an adventure. That makes it an exciting place to congregate, and those who hang about feel a real sense of achievement just for being here above a couple of days. After a week, they call themselves ‘local.’ But there’s a saying here, ‘No one stays.’

Do you embrace change? I try to. Sometimes, I crave it. A change can be as good as a rest. It’s a fresh start, a new beginning. It’s freedom. Other times, it’s unwelcome. It’s exhausting.

You can’t always hold onto the people and places you want to. The main thing is to recognise and cherish the value they’ve brought to your life, rather than bemoaning their loss. The winds of change mess up all sorts of things, but they can’t sweep away the memories you choose to keep. Choose to keep the good ones.

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12 thoughts on “The Winds Of Change

  1. adstarrling

    Is that the cottage?! It’s gorgeous 😀

    I will leave you with some Dale Carnegie sayings about overcoming worry:

    1.Live in “day tight compartments.”

    2. How to face trouble:
    a. Ask yourself, “What is the worst that can possibly happen?”
    b. Prepare to accept the worst.
    c. Try to improve on the worst.

    3. Remind yourself of the exorbitant price you can pay for worry in terms of your health.

    So here’s to the exciting future you’re stepping into 😀

    Look forward to seeing you in August!

    AD Starrling XOXO

    Reply
    1. saralitchfield

      It is 😀 beautiful isn’t it – I’m so lucky to have ended up living here at all! Thank you for timely and welcome advice! So looking forward to seeing you in August 😀 I always have to remind myself we’ve not met in person yet!

      Reply
  2. Aussa Lorens

    Ah, wish I could come help you pack! It’s my favorite and I would make it so orderly and logical, your head would spin 😉 All my left brain qualities are wasted on the most insignificant of pursuits.

    Change can be scary… but it’s reassuring to think on the good things that have happened despite your best intentions. There are more things afoot! Though that place is beautiful and quite possibly stolen from a catalog because how on earth could anyone live somewhere so gorgeous?! That’s not helping is it…

    Reply
    1. Sara Litchfield Post author

      Packing is your favorite… Um… I don’t really know what to say, I’m trying not to be hasty and see this as a partner-in-crime dealbreaker… It actually Would help with that if you were to come and pack for me – just unfortunately can’t pay your expenses :p

      Sigh it is so lovely… I wonder if I’ll live anywhere so nice again!

      Reply
  3. Deborah Makarios

    Have you considered moving to the Wellington region? 🙂

    Last time we moved we had movers who packed for us – first time for me, and I decided in future I’d do it myself. It’s such a good opportunity to sort, purge, and start afresh – so invigorating! I quite enjoy packing, actually, as long as there’s plenty of time and nice strong cardboard boxes (wine boxes are best for books, I find).

    I’m still not as talented a packer as my mother, though – I suspect her of using extra dimensions to fit more in. She makes tetris look loose and sloppy.

    Reply
    1. Sara Litchfield Post author

      Lol windy Wellington! I actually lived in Johnsonville for a while, loved it! You’re right – there’s definitely things I can purge, I’m a hoarder! It’s the time I resent giving to it, movers are tempting! Lol your mother sounds a lot like mine :p

      Reply
      1. Deborah Makarios

        Yeah, moving is a real time-sponge. It helps to think of it as a time given to you to recreate your life – although this is definitely a lot harder when trying to work two jobs at the same time!
        If you go for movers, choose wisely – some of our furniture has never been the same…

        Reply
  4. ontyrepassages

    A wonderful post, and I can see why you’re enthralled with the home. Beautiful. If someone told me the photo was taken near where I live I’d believe it, for the land looks similar. Change is healthy, for it helps us grow, but I’m better about embracing it some times better than others. My last major move, this past February (the first in over 25 years) was difficult and reminded me how much I dislike moving. Yes, packing is terrible. At the same time, it was a move I dearly wanted and so embraced it. I would love to have a home base, a nest, from which to travel about this vast world to experience different locations, cultures, and people. Unfortunately, that seems to require funds I don’t possess. In the end, though, I see all the moves I’ve ever made as having been positive experiences in the end. I certainly can’t blame you for wanting to remain where you are, be it in that house or New Zealand in general. Lovely.

    Reply
    1. Sara Litchfield Post author

      I love looking at all the pics you post, it looks so beautiful there – a lot like here you’re right 🙂 that’s one thing I won’t give up – living somewhere surrounded by beauty that stops me in my tracks… The attitude to moving does have a big effect on it – mine needs adjusting, I’m sure I’ll find somewhere pretty to live in again! Just maybe not *as* pretty!

      Reply
  5. Tam Francis

    Not sure why this makes me sad for you, but it does. You have such a great attitude about it.
    I grew up with my dad being in the army and we moved a lot. One year I was in three different schools in three different states. I LOVE adventure too, but as holiday, not lifestyle. I swore I wouldn’t move my kids around and we only have once and it was in the summer. I told my hubby I planned on dying in our current house.

    Best of luck to you Sarah, it sounds like you’re determined to make it work. Go girl!

    Reply
    1. Sara Litchfield Post author

      Thanks Tam! It’s happening tomorrow – in the midst of a snow storm this week lol… That must have been an exciting childhood, but definitely unsettling… I hope you have a wonderful life in the house you’ll haunt when you’re gone – I’ll find mine one day 🙂

      Reply
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