At the end of this month, I will be of “no fixed address.” I gave notice on my current apartment. On April 30th I will pack up what little belongings that I have and on May 1st I will fly off this island.
I thought that I was ok with this, even excited about the prospect of leaping into the unknown again. Turns out I am anxious about having no plans past the next couple of months.
The world of the digital nomad seems exciting. Many months ago, I realized that I am not one. I never saw myself as being digital until I was forced to go virtual during the pandemic. I am grateful to be able to conduct business from Barbados. But a nomad I am not. I am the type of person that unpacks my entire backpack or suitcase even when staying a couple of nights. When I move into a home, whether bought or rented, I relish the task of finding a place for each of my things. A place for everything and everything in its place!
Oddly enough, I love the ending of a long stay. I have made it a challenge to eat through my “hurricane provisions” in the cupboard. I am baking at a rate to use up just the right amount of flour, oil, and nuts so that there is nothing left in four weeks’ time. I think that I have just enough shampoo and conditioner to get me back to Canada.
This desire to have a home has me looking at places to buy in Barbados. Everything here is expensive, but I have heard that real estate in Ontario is now ridiculous. The Canadian banks have always been generous to me with their money; here, it appears that they won’t give me anything. Being self-employed has always been a ticket to freedom; however, it isn’t that popular with lenders. Neither is being a non-resident.
Do I set off on my travels free as a bird, but without a home to come back to? Or do I find a place to live so that I can know that I have a place to return?
I love living here in Barbados. I love the heat all-year round, being outside and able to surf most days of the year. But the travel and hospitality sectors are picking up and the rent prices we enjoyed over COVID may disappear as the island recovers. I am not sure if my fundamental need to get value for money will allow me to stay here.
Do I buy a place to bring down the cost of living here? Long term can I live in a place that is so expensive?
This is the crux of the issue – I am having to choose between values. My need for freedom and to just take off and see the world is being challenged by my anxiety for security and having a stable home. I am hugely affected by my environment, a nice place where I am warm. Yet, I feel the need for my money to go far. Which needs will win out? How will I decide?
Maybe you can help: Have you ever been in the position where you had to choose between two things that meant a lot to you? How did you decide?