I have a confession to make. It’s been brewing for a couple of months now. And my heart had been bursting to share for quite a while now. But my pragmatic Dutch husband asked for my silence until everything was settled. Now that all the contracts have been signed, sealed and delivered, the world can officially know.
My family and I going country bumpkin on you folks.
We are moving next month to Doorn, a small Dutch village nestled in the nature forest reserve area of the Utrechtse Heuvelrug (Utrecht Hill Ridge). The Dutch who live in a country that would be about 44% submerged underwater if it wasn’t for Dutch ingenuity would refer to this area as hills.
After seven years in the Netherlands, this expat-that-could is going to go where very little expats have dared venture out to, deep into the heart of the Dutch sticks.
Okay, maybe it’s a bit of an exaggeration. This is the Netherlands we’re talking about – a country where it only takes about 2-4 hours (depending on where you to start) to drive across entirely. We will still be only half an hour drive away from Utrecht and forty-five minutes away from Amsterdam. But Doorn feels like an entirely different world.
I have always been a city girl at heart, but it’s not who I am anymore. Not at this moment. Right now, I am a mother to a precocious and adventurous two-year old boy who loves nothing more than to play outside. And I find myself being more at ease and being able to enjoy the experience more when he’s exploring in a natural playground setting rather than the confines of an urban jungle, or non-descript suburbia.
Granted, there are also lots of dangers to learn about and be aware of like ticks and snakes for example. But it’s a trade-off we’re willing to make for wanting him to grow up close to nature and as my husband and I figure out what this whole balancing of parenting and being both career-driven personalities is all about.
And I’m also a writer. I’m craving the time, space and quiet to be alone with my thoughts. All this writing about happiness precipitated some serious soul-searching. I want to be an authentic, genuine voice – as an Asian (Filipino)-American mother, wife and writer currently living in the Netherlands (Europe). I have my heart set on bringing diversity to the written and blogging world. And I’m utterly convinced that moving to Doorn will be what I need to develop myself – a sort of healthy compromise between the real-world demands of my husband’s blossoming career and my need for a writing sanctity.
So we’ve notified our landlord, contacted the movers and are now are looking forward to a month of preparing for the big move.
Hope you continue following me on my adventures of making a home in the Netherlands. Here’s to Finding Dutchland, where ever you may be.