space and distance

After living in their bus for nearly two years, my older son and daughter-in-law have moved to a rental.

It’s an adorable little house with oodles of natural light, high ceilings, tons of open space. Well, it’s not tons tons, but after living in a bus for two years, it’s pretty darn palatial. (“Overwhelming,” was how my daughter-in-law described it.) 

The new place is twenty, maybe twenty-five, minutes from our house, all the way on the other side of the county, but after having them live so close — every time we drove into town, we passed by their road — the new place actually feels super far away. Like, we’ll have to make it a point to go see them. Not that we actually ever really went to see them before (remember: BUS), so maybe it’s the space, not the location, that matters most in this case?

Anyway, last Saturday we met up at the new house for a cleaning party: washing windows, scrubbing bathrooms and cupboards, airing furniture, etc.

They live close to the river, so the move is just in time for summer: we can go hang out by the river for the afternoon and then pop over to their place for supper.

That’s my plan anyway. 

So over the weekend they moved far, far away, and then Tuesday morning my older daughter flew off to Ireland where she’ll be solo traveling for the next two and a half months.

After Ireland, she’s going to Scotland and England, and maybe Amsterdam. She has one WWOOFING gig lined up, and a couple of her cousins are gonna meet up with her for a few days at some point. Another girlfriend will join her in London towards the end of June and then the two of them will come back together on the Queen Mary 2. (Apparently the Queen Mary 2 has the biggest library on the ocean; considering that both girls are insatiable bookworms, I imagine that’s where they’ll spend most of their time.) 

She arrived safely and has been sending me photos of her pub dinners, gray skies, and rocks. She left her water bottle at the airport in Shannon, but other than that everything’s going just fine. 

It was pretty hard to see her go — transitions always heighten my feelings of sadness, loss, and anxiety — but now, even though the tracking app on her phone tells us that she’s 3365 miles away, I’m one cool cat. Everything’s up to her now, not me. Live it up, kiddo!

This same time, years previous: the quotidian (4.17.23), sunshine cakes, the coronavirus diaries: week six, both ends, it takes a village, in the night air, with an audience, cheesy popcorn.


  • Candace

    I’m jealous of your daughter. The Queen Mary 2 is on my bucket list. My grandmother (who is 105!!!) came to Canada via the original Queen Mary, which I have toured in Long Beach, California. I would love to retrace her journey.

  • bradtstacy

    Wow, Jen! You’re one brave Mama bear! But your kids are SOOO far advanced and more mature than 90% of their peers with your awesome parenting and homeschooling. Well done, to have raised such a smart, talented and adventurous daughter.

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