It’s really nothing against the job, or England, or travel, or people. It’s been a good trip to Cambridge and the US, with some fun times, a lot accomplished, and a wonderful break up in Sweden.
But I’m missing friends and biking, keeping up with the language and days without meetings. I worry about the progress of my IND renewal, the business partnerships, the money vanishing into an apartment and parking space that I barely use this month. I think it’s a short-term situation, but plans to come back for a week or so have been repeatedly sidetracked by urgent meetings and overseas travel.
There was a similar time, maybe fifteen years ago, when I was forced to recognize that my sailing club membership had fallen into disuse. I used the boats with the kids several times each week, but now they were grown and doing their own thing, so the $180 per month went largely unused. And, without weekly sails, it was hard to justify the expense.
So I gave it up, but I felt very bad afterwards.
It wasn’t so much that I lost access to the boats: I could always charter. Rather, it was admitting that my life no longer had room for casual sailing. Boating would, henceforth, require planning and effort and be much less frequent.
I wasn’t sure I liked what this implied my life was becoming.
As the leaves start to turn to fall colors here and the rain moves in on cooler winds, I think the same concern is at work now. ‘Never as simple as a right/left choice, but a subtle, evolving reconfiguration of my affairs that risks gently making Dutch residence superfluous.
But, equally simply, I’m not ready to give up on that life.