Firstly I would like to apologize for my laziness or my lack in devotion to write on regular basis. It’s 5 months since my last post and I do feel guilty about it – especially because I have so many things to share with all of you.
The thing is – that I actually wrote this whole piece (a sum of last 4 months) a month ago – when I was flying to Barcelona. I remember being very content with my written piece too. But – as you can imagine – I misplaced that little notebook somewhere – I hope that at least some stranger had a good day after finding/reading it.
My last post was about us arriving back to UK after long and much needed free time back home & in Croatia.
We are lucky enough that we have such good friends here in UK (our first bosses J&J) so that we could arrange things as we planned. They welcomed us to stay with them for the duration of time necessary for us to find a new job position here in England. We gave ourselves 1-3 months to find a perfect situation and after that – our savings would run out. So thank you again J&J for your acceptance and kindness you gave us in these 2 years that we know each other.
This time we managed the things differently – we attained a year and 8 months of working experiences in private staff sector for wealthy families. And this time – we knew exactly what we wanted out of our new position. And naturally – we got the opposite – exactly what we need right now – and not what we wanted in the beginning. And it turned out – that what we need right now is slowly becoming exactly what we wanted also. We applied to 3 different agencies that are handling private staff. They arranged 4 interviews on different properties around England all together. All very interesting – but 3 of them were certainly not for us – we know ourselves that much. And the 4th interview was here in Oxfordshire, where we are happily positioned the last 11 months.
I really can’t reveal much about this position – except that we are working for a high net worth family (as they call them here) as their house managers. Our employer and his wife (including their 3 children) are exceptional people. Very polite, interesting, down to earth, intellectual, easy to talk to – and we have a very content relationship.
This is such a beautiful property with a large country house, few flower/bush gardens with this magnificent old tress, food garden and grand swimming pool. This is their summer and holiday’s house, their main residence is in London. Apart from the stunning salary – this job came with an apartment free of rent/utilities detached from the main house. Our own space on the property – which we knew we need if we want to operate at our best here for these few years that we are settling. Yes, I’m settling for few years. J As I mentioned through my posting – concluded in various blogs – settling here is all a part of a bigger picture and much bolder plans. But to realize them – we need a few years of exactly this experience that we are having right now.
We are located in Cotswold’s – beautiful hills that just keep rolling and rolling. We are living in a village surrounded by 2 nearest towns Chipping Norton and Stow on the wold that are approximately 5 miles away by car. I absolutely adore this scenery here and the harmony it gives me. Our dog Gaia also seems to love it here – all the walks, animals that are everyday present everywhere we go (pheasants, sheep, cows, horses, deer, monkjacks, badgers…). The property is also very spacious and fenced – which means that she’s quite comfortable here.
We also quite like this little pictures town Stow on the wold. It has its charm with this tiny and odd coffee houses, traditional pubs and bakeries. It has a few places where we can indulge in veggie food or some vegan coffee of beer. Just a few places actually serve food between 2 pm – 6 or 7 pm here in England (except in bigger towns).
“Stow-on-the-Wold is the quintessential English town. Mellow Cotswold stone houses, shops and hotels are surrounded by the world famous Cotswold’s countryside. Sitting elegantly at the hub of the Cotswolds, Stow is a natural and historic meeting place. Stow has the a fine selection of Cotswold shops, luxury hotels and charming Cotswold accommodation. Stow mixes chic bistros, Cotswold inns, elegant manor house hotels, charming bed & breakfast accommodation with cozy tea shops. The rural informality and a fine choice of accommodation makes Stow the ideal destination for a Cotswold weekend break or holiday in the Cotswolds.”
And Chipping Norton is on the opposite side of Stow. Here we usually shop for food/ groceries; it has few good pubs and places to have a nice coffee and snack.
“Perched on one of the highest points in the Cotswolds, Chipping Norton has lately become synonymous in the media with the ‘Chipping Norton set’. While a number of celebrities do live in the area, few reputations are so erroneous: this is a not a town of Range Rovered London weekenders, but a bustling, lively market town with a strong community spirit. Chippy, as it is known affectionately by the locals, is the ‘Town of Ten Festivals’ with an enviable reputation for lively and entertaining events both great and small ranging from the busy little weekly market to the annual Chipping Norton Literary Festival, an increasingly influential event. As well as a modern leisure center with indoor pool, Chipping Norton has a community run Lido into which local celebrity Jeremy Clarkson, a keen supporter of the Lido, once drove a Rolls Royce during an episode of Top Gear!”
While we’ve been here – we didn’t explore a great deal of surrounding spots. I promise we will be doing more of that now – when this spring that we longed for finally arrived.
Apart from the colorful fields and tress that surround us – there is one quite remarkable place 20 min by car from our home here. It’s called Broadway tower – where this small fortress is positioned on the hill – and the panorama around is breathtaking. There are some footpaths around and a coffee house/restaurant where you can relax on the terrace, absorbing the sun.
“Standing 65ft high Broadway Tower is the second highest point in the Cotswolds and sits dramatically on top of an ancient beacon site. The brainchild of Capability Brown, Broadway Tower was built for the Earl of Coventry in 1798 by renowned 18th Century architect James Wyatt.
Known as the Highest Little Castle in the Cotswolds, Broadway Tower has a Saxon look with circular arches over the windows and entrance. There are three turrets, three canted sides and numerous gargoyles and balconies. On a clear day you can see up to 16 counties from the top of the Tower.”
Beneath the hill there’s a lovely village called Broadway – with interesting old local pubs.
Previous week we had our first visit here from our 2 Slovenian friends. They too were amazed by the surroundings and the English lifestyle. We took them to our favorite places; show them how our Life here really looks like. We had a good time together, they also went to London to meet with friends they know there. I hope they had a great time on these holidays and that they’ve got a feeling of this unique reality.
In conclusion I would like to share with you what this opportunity (living and working here for few years) really offers us.
Firstly – we are very grateful for all of this. We were working hard towards manifesting this reality since being jobless in Slovenia 2,5 years ago. And the most noticeable difference is the freedom this job provides us. We are managing our own working hours (since our employers are rarely here). We can give aside quite a large sum of money – and with what is left – we can have appropriate, comfortable life here. We can and will travel around quite often, people can visit us here, we can indulge ourselves a little, can afford pricey organic goodies and most importantly – we have the time to pursue our hobbies, to learn and love and grow beyond our past selves.
And secondly; it is very peaceful here and quite isolated from “normal social” life (at least for us). And I think I kind a prefer it this way. It gives me the opportunity to know myself better, to change and develop – to whomever I’m becoming as a future me – who will be living in next stage of my quest for Free-er Life.
“To offer no resistance to life is to be in a state of grace, ease, and lightness. This state is then no longer dependent upon things being in a certain way, good or bad. It seems almost paradoxical, yet when your inner dependency on form is gone, the general conditions of your life, the outer forms, tend to improve greatly. Things, people, or conditions that you thought you needed for your happiness now come to you with no struggle or effort on your part, and you are free to enjoy and appreciate them – while they last. All those things, of course, will still pass away, cycles will come and go, but with dependency gone there is no fear of loss anymore. Life flows with ease.” Eckhart Tolle