I didn’t even see the apartment in Monza before we moved in. Desperately trying to finish school and save money, searching for an apartment overseas was not the easiest. Seeing that we were lagging, Marco’s mom served as our realtor, finding for-rent signs and ads and driving to multiple places on her own; touring, deciding.
Finally she called us with one option. Sad, yes, she said, but full of potential. The entirely empty and white apartment was a bit sad, but its large balconies and huge windows more than made up for it. We were living above a family with no one around us, like a lighthouse over the courtyard. Slowly we filled the white in with color, adding a bright red rug, African paintings, plants and our general mess (or more accurately, my general mess.) There was even room in the garage for my bike!
It became my home much more than I had ever expected.
Still the apartment was meant to be temporary, a way for me to move, for us to see where things would go (and oh how they went!) So when we had the opportunity to move back to Marco’s hometown, carving out an apartment for us in Sovico from the family’s villa (see some pics here), we said yes. In August we set the idea to move in motion. We would move out of our temporary apartment that had grown not-so-temporary, into our very own house!
The race began in January when we started searching for kitchens and continued high-speed until just this week, when we realized the house was finished enough to live in.
Now, a year and a half since my move to Italy, I feel like my “home base” has changed yet again, only this time much more permanently.
Living and working in Monza, it grew to be my home. I often saw my students and their families walking through the center or at church in the Duomo. I regularly ate lunch with my grandma-in-law and even have a library card. I was able to ride my bike everywhere and knew where all the bike stands in town were located. Though I’m very familiar with Sovico and the house, it’s still quite a change.
It’s scary to set down more permanent roots and it’s scary to have such a responsibility and it’s scary to have such an expense, but just like when I first decided to move or even to get married, I’m still convinced that it’s better to say “yes!” It’s impossible to know every move, plan every step, life is an infinite board game of possible outcomes, decisions need to be made with each draw of the cards.
So after finishing the last of the packing on Sunday, I took my bike for a ride – from Monza to Sovico.