Freedom isn’t always free – making choices.

While walking the Camino de Santiago last September Bill and I talked about moving to Da Nang, Vietnam and volunteering. We had such a moving experience there in May and felt a huge tug to get involved on a deeper level.

As the kilometers passed and the backpacking communal living added up we started talking about the “S” word.

Settling (down).

The following 3 months, living in Salamanca Spain, had us researching colonial towns in mainland Mexico.  Ones that offered old world charm.  We would live in an antiquated hacienda with crumbling walls and endless verandas.  Bill would plant a garden and I would paint and take photos.

I reminisced about living in San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas 3 years earlier – romanticizing the simple life – cobblestone streets, fabulous restaurants…

Bill recalled the rain, rain and more rain. “Rain means bugs and humidity.”

I flashed back to our last chubasco experience (a hatching, hundreds of thousands of crawling and flying bugs invading our bedroom and the kids’ room while we slept) and said “I’m not doing bugs and humidity – there’s nothing settling about that.”  The Yucatan was out!

114 beds in the past year, yes were ready.

So we made a list.

Non-negotiable items: climate has to be dry, a fireplace, a view (mountains or water), quiet and surrounded by wide open spaces.  Not surprisingly, both our home in Nevada and the home we share with friends in Southern Baja include these characteristics.

After 3 short months in Nevada we had concluded that Baja fit the bill. Settling down meant travel a few days here and there – nothing more.  We would take advantage of those travel days when the house was used by our partners.

The car was loaded from top to bottom – sewing machine, paints, computers, vegetable seeds, walking sticks, yoga mats and more.

Ahhh…. settling in.