For most of us a lifestyle change at sixty five years old, may not be what most of us are looking for! However, having lived for most of my life in the predictable British climate, a warmer climate came top of my shopping list. Other stipulations were that it had to be in Europe, less than three hours flying time from the UK, it would also have to have a mild winter temperature allowing all year access to the great outdoors with impunity. In my case I felt the need to live a more open air lifestyle which in turn should force me to become fitter, slimmer, healthier, plus it may be possible to shake off a few years. Well that’s my theory at least.
I also needed to consider my single status as one needs to preserve one’s self for as long as possible, having been a successful lady chaser for the past eighteen years, indeed, why stop now, there is no stamp on my forehead revealing my age. I did reflect for a moment on both of my Grandfathers, somehow I could not see them chasing the ladies or going abroad to live, nor did they have budget airlines back in those days.
Which country would be suitable as my second home, bearing in mind my stipulations, there was only one choice, which was Portugal, it fitted the bill perfectly as many Brits can testify before me. Did you know the Brits have been living on the Algarve for two hundred years. Southern Spain did offer a close alternative as far as climate goes, however, in the words of some they are Spained Out, I can see where they are coming from. The Portuguese people are friendly, their traditional music a great bonus. Crime is relatively less than back in Old Blighty, fresh fish and fruit are relatively cheap and plentiful.
The plan needed a small amount of money, fortunately for me I had a couple of modest payments from pension companies which I had more or less forgotten about. My plan involved the purchase of a residential style static used mobile home which has an area of some 30 square meters, just a bit tight for longer stays. However, plan number two is to build on a further 30 square meters of space in the form of a pergola terrace with a tiled roof and patio doors, perfect to place large squashy sofas, bookshelves and dinning table. As I already had the offer of a plot which I am able to rent, everything should be straight forward from now, water and electricity are already on the 500 square meter plot located at Pera in the Algarve in the centre of a large vineyard, one can buy the local red wine at eight euros a gallon, take your own container of course.
Some work and expense is required to install the fossa or septic tank plus I have enlisted the help of a local builder. Work will start mid April 2010. My next article will be at the beginning of May 2010 when I shall report on my general state of fitness as well as progress on the abode.