Living a full life

Since the last blog post, things have been hotting up for me as the registrations for Cyprus Open Studios started coming in, resulting in intense concentration and sitting at the computer for long hours. But, it was all worthwhile as I’m quite happy with what we have achieved so far. For interest’s sake, here is the link to our website and, while you’re there, click on the BLOG button. We are, of course, also on Facebook – join us by liking the page.

But, as this is not a business posting, I better start telling you about the other things happening in my life.

Jo – Joey for many people – has settled in brilliantly. Oh, locally she is known as Johanna, which is the same as the Greek Ioanna.  She’s not looking back for one moment and is in the process of meeting new people and finding more enjoyment each day. Last evening, we watched the last two episodes of MasterChef Australia – something we’ve been watching once a week over many weeks! We’ve also been trying out new eating places each Wednesday – what fun! I’ve suddenly realised I will have to start sorting out images… there are plenty! However, I found a few… to whet your appetite.

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Wine with a view – each time!

And we mustn’t forget that the chickens need feeding and that we need to cook our own as well – the fresh produce is outstanding, especially if you can pick it in your own veranda garden!

My grandson, Schalk-Willem, has moved to the Netherlands at the beginning of this year to do his Masters Degree at Tilburg University. He is doing extremely well and will start his internship with a dream company called 3D Hubs in Amsterdam on 5 August. His girlfriend, Brittany, also moved to the Netherlands. She works for an advertising company very much involved with Facebook and lives in Haarlem, where the two of them now share accommodation and both work in Amsterdam – a short train ride away; apparently the rest of his curriculum is available online whilst he writes his thesis. We are overjoyed for them! They are really starting their own lives now.

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Schalk-Willem and Brittany – the new Dutchies, at home in Haarlem.

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Here he is part of the team that came second in a competition held in Berlin

a couple of months ago – big WOW!

Since I finished putting the COS catalogue together for the printers, I went a little bananas… I enrolled in 3 courses that I thought I’d do during the summer break. Oh, dear – it’s manic! The most important one, I think, is the Financial Freedom course, which is intense! The reason for taking this one is because in my previous life, Donald took care of all the financial dealings. Of course I was included in meetings and decisions, but I knew absolutely nothing about how the world of finance worked. That’s what I’m learning about now! And also to make your money work for you; I found out that I am termed as a ‘passive earner’ as other people earn my money for me… at a price, of course! An ‘active earner’ is one who works for a living – and long may they live!

Another course is one that was offered by the man who was – still is! – trying to teach me to do Impressionist painting. Yes, he offered an online course which, in a different way, is as intense as the financial one. I got quite stuck in the mud about The Method as it’s something I’m not happy with: other people’s methods – except when it comes to cooking! But, sometimes it helps to take a breath and stand back; during my little afternoon siesta yesterday, it dawned on me that I can do it MY way – not HIS way. As long as the end result is what it should be. As they say, the proof is in the pudding…

The third course I won’t tell you about, as it’s a little whoo-whoo, which is why I’ve decided to put it on the back burner until the winter; all about Shamanic healing methods… told you!

One thing I probably will never get my head around is the fact that my landlady and my one neighbour provide me with FOOD! Many days when I thought it was time to prepare something to eat, one of them stood at the front door – or in my kitchen – with a dish or two. I would say that 98% of their offerings have been extremely welcome; the other 2% was probably because I’m not a local, as they were acquired tastes. And I only had to say that I was vegetarian once – they remember!

Jo with my landlady, Fanula, and a few of the things that walked through my door…

We have also learned that it is REALLY bad form to object or refuse. Accept everything gracefully and if there is something that you truly don’t like, be honest. If you lie about it, you will get it again and again – and that’s a waste of good food for some!

Having moved into “the village” has been quite an experience. It is totally different from where I used to live – totally! I thought we had moved to Cyprus in 2001, but what we actually did was to move into an enclave of ex-pats who were/are isolated from the real Cyprus.

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Tala village square – the square is the life of every village worth its name!

My advice for anyone who wishes to change countries is to rent a property and get to know the place before committing yourself to buying or building; find the place that suits you. Many ex-pats move to countries where they try and change everything to suit them instead of living the local life. I’m not just talking about Cyprus – you get it in almost every other country. We were quite amused when we were on the Algarve in Portugal and just about every restaurant offered classic fish ‘n chips and Sunday Roasts… it’s the same here! I must say France is quite resistant!

Well, my well has dried up now – will have to wait for some inflow! Until the next time when I catch up with you all, have a wonderful life and enjoy whatever it is you are doing. Every now and then, stop and… smell the roses – or whatever is around! Just take a deep breath. Over here, we are staying cool…

S8A5200 One of the Venetian bridges in Cyprus – you didn’t know they have been here? Oh, yes, they were!

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Jo, me, Dave and Pauline – good friends!

P.S. The image at the top is the view from Jo’s home… to die for! Well, it doesn’t seem to show, so here it is:

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