Categories
Wellness

What It’s Like To Have Your Family’s Lived For Decades In A Hotel

Two friends and I live on the same road in the countryside, and are constantly in communication; we’ve done all kinds of things together. We have shared our homes, kitchens, cars and memories: our son’s graduation from high school, our son’s wedding, our kids’ wedding, our granddaughter’s first day at her new school, etc. Now we’re moving to a house on the same road, our new house will have a courtyard, and the whole family will live on the same grounds.

As my daughter-in-law told me, it’s not a huge change of scenery, but it is a change of house. They are making it so that now my son will have his own cottage. (As a bonus, he’ll also be able to eat his own dinner all by himself.) When I talked to my friend, she said, I don’t know, it’s not for me. My son is more than grown now.

I think these changes are a little too far in the future for me. Maybe at some point they will be too much.

This all sounds really weird — but not really. I am not crazy. I’ve gone through a lot of changes of my own, over a long period of time. I think it’s just me being a little bit of a loner. And we are the same people: we both go to work, we both eat our own meals, we both cook our own meals. This is one of the biggest factors.

At the moment I am doing exactly what I always do, which is going back to work. There were a lot of changes when I came to work in the early 1990’s. In 1990, I had no choice; I was an employee as at that time the companies were all on the verge of bankruptcy. But then I started my own consulting firm in 1992 and we expanded steadily and I have had the privilege of working with amazing people all over the world.

I’m a software engineer by trade. I’ve worked for lots of different companies. We were on the verge of bankruptcy, but now I’m doing software engineering and being paid to do it. I don’t think anybody can ask anything more from me. In the meantime, I am looking forward to finishing up my master’s degree and then moving back to my family-owned cottage in the country for the summer.

Doing a master’s degree sounds pretty boring — but it’s really not. So much of software engineering is not about programming — it’s all about communication with stakeholders and understanding a process and how to navigate around it. As far as I understand, one of the advantages of doing a master’s degree is getting a chance to get involved in some projects in a much more immediate way, compared to doing a PhD. Then you can do really cool projects.

I think all these changes were great for my career, although obviously I am far from being done. The one I think was the most difficult of all was that of getting a job. Once again, I could have gone back to work at the consultancy, but in my mind there are so many more cool things I want to do and I want to do more interesting things in software engineering. I’m not the sort of person who wants to work the same job day in and day out.

I suppose one of the things that was so exciting as I was leaving my old job was that now I would be able to start my own consulting business. That is what I’d really like to do, but I am not sure I can do it. The whole project to move to my own cottage took ten years. I was going to buy a house in London, go back to my parents’ house in the countryside, spend the summer with family and start selling books with my partner. (He’ll be selling his books too, by the way, in November and December.) Then I’d move back to my old house with my father-in-law.

I suppose we both need to keep looking — we are so different — but eventually I just want to travel. I want to be back in the country and I want to see my family again.