It’s been about six months since the notifications that forced all of the changes. My company in the UK was awarded a major (and much appreciated) research grant, but it required me to spend about a third of my time in Cambridge running the project. Meanwhile, the Dutch business was making steady progress and breaking even with consulting revenues as it approaches it’s first full year in business. I want to keep one foot in the Netherlands and good links to the US. But my landlady, 87 and with the prospect of heart problems, asked that I vacate within six months so that she could put a caregiver in place. And, as fond as I am of my road-worn Locomotief fiets, it isn’t much good for getting to the ferry docks for England.
My strategy was to downscale the Dutch apartment, using the excess cash to support a pied à terre in England, taking pressure off of renting room at the College for 50 gbp / night. I didn’t want to make long-term commitments for either rental; the business hits some crucial milestones this summer and I qualify for permanent residence status in the Netherlands next year, able to buy property, so I don’t want to long-term leases or furniture purchases. I also needed to get a car to move between the two jobs each month (and provide some weekend mobility during the summer days to come), but don’t want to live for eternity with the wheels I can afford today.
So, after much work, it’s coming together.
- In the Netherlands, I’ll move directly across the river to a furnished (and cheaper) flat, adding a bedroom/office and retaining the view of the iconic Stone Bridge.
- In England, there’s a small, furnished spot in the village of Barrington, just southwest of Cambridge, fronting on the village green and with space to walk and ride.
- And I’ve found a 2-year, 30 km/yr lease arrangement on a blue Ford Fiesta that is about 2/3 what the dealer bid. This came after both banks turned down my loan request, saying that the business needed three years of working history before they would consider it.
- <-- My mind’s eye view of the smokin’ hot little bug. Sadly, reality is more like:
It’s still a bit wobbly in spots: my landlady is threatening to hold me to a June exit; the lease company wants to review my business plan, and I’m leaving for the US for 10 days on Sunday. But, it’s progress…