We finally got confirmation that Lauren has a place for next school year at the French school in Lisbon. She has been on the waiting list there and in Porto since early this year, and the response has always been that they were full, until we finally got a notification that she has a place, just as I was seriously starting to contemplate a move to France!
I want to keep her in the same system she has been in up until now, as it suits her, gives her three languages, and also has a great deal of flexibility, eventually leading to the IB in either French of English, giving her plenty of options. The possibility of doing another year ‘online’ is also attractive, as who knows, maybe we will manage another trip before she leaves home :-).
Speaking of ‘home’, we at least know now where we are headed. Lisbon, capital of Portugal and a hot destination for digital nomads right now. Rents have gone through the roof, and its scary what a simple 2-bedroom apartment can cost these days. My image of doing the odd consultancy and living an easy life has been replaced by the need to rake in some serious dough to afford both the city and the school. Not to mention the surfing lessons she seems dead keen on…. Oh well, I’ve had a year off, can’t exactly complain!!! Better start polishing that CV, its been a long time since I had to go actively looking for work.
Of course, the main upside of a move to Lisbon is that we will be close to the rest of the Ennis family. Lauren is already making a list of all the yummy things she wants my parents to make for her (she is a child that thinks with her stomach) and the cool things she can do with my brother on their mysterious ‘uncle days’ (I suspect there may be food involved in these plans also). Being close to her cousin who is now 5 is also a main draw.
For my part, I don’t feel at all ready to ‘settle back down’ but I must admit I am looking forward to working again. I’ve done the odd bit on the road but miss the intellectual stimulation and satisfaction of working hard and doing a good job and feeling I’ve contributed to something bigger than me. I’m ready to re-engage. I have mixed feelings about being back in Portugal, I spent my adolescence there and it wasn’t the happiest experience (but then whose adolescence was?!) but then that was a small village nearly 20 years ago, not the buzzing capital city in 2018. Hopefully we will have lots of visitors.
But first, we have a third of the globe to cover – Xi’an next to see the famous terracotta warriors, then Beijing, then through the Gobi desert to Mongolia, where it seems we will be sleeping in the wild in a Ger, then on to Moscow, Brussels, Lisbon…..