Over the years, Terry and I have lived in apartments, houses, both rented and owned, a parsonage and now in our retirement we live in two manufactured homes,
one in Kentucky on our daughter and son-in-law’s land and one in Florida on Walden Shores Land. Actually, although neither have wheels…they are both portable, so when people speak of the sort of people who live in ‘double wides’, I must acknowledge we are among them.
We live in temporary housing on land that belongs to another. Which by the way is not unlike living in our temporary bodies in a world that belongs to another.
Back in 2006 we could have chosen differently, but like the two roads emerging in the woods of Robert Frost’s poem, we chose the one less traveled by and that made all the difference.
Rather than move from the parsonage in Pembroke to rental property while we decided where to buy a home, we chose to accept the generosity of our children and agree to their terms. We would put a portable home on the property. The most permanent building is our barn sized garage, but it will someday make a good farm building.
We choose this lifestyle, because of the enormous benefits provided. One is the opportunity to live close, down the road close, to one of our children’s family, to know Graham can ride his bike to Papa’s house to see if they can go fishing, that Abigail and Jordan can come and go as they wish. In the nine years since we left the parsonage, we have been blessed over and over by this arrangement. My only wish is that all of my children’s families were so close.
Another benefit is the opportunity to live in two communities of folks during the year. Watching the snow accumulate in zero degree weather in Kentucky from poolside in Florida cheers me considerably. Also, we have met so many great people and explored new places, because of our choice to be ‘snow birds.’
Choosing to live in temporary housing, choosing to live without heavy mortgages simplifies our lives allowing us to be content within the boundaries of our retirement incomes. We can live and we can give. We are not wealthy, but wealth is a demanding master. . .and hey! we retired to reduce the number of our earthly masters.
So this Free Range Old Hen has come to terms with living in a ‘double wide with a satellite dish on the side.’ In fact I am glad we made the choices we did. I am pretty darn sure that my heavenly mansion, the one being prepared for me, has a wide porch that wraps around the whole house….AND that is my permanent home, after all. Until then I am content, happy to be alive and kicking, blessed to wake up next to the man I love.