Thursday 25 January 2024: Flying visit

Image by Anja from Pixabay

I’ve been a bit AWOL these past two days, and this is a flying visit. I don’t really have a lot to say other than I’ve been busy doing one thing, and doing one thing is a bit boring to write about. Especially when everything is still going really slowly and extracting every word is like pulling teeth.

We did book a weekend away for my birthday, as it’s a big one and I don’t like to be anywhere near home for big ones. We’ve booked a cottage on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales where they join the Lake District, in a place called Ravenstonedale, not far from Kirkby Stephen.

It’s a bit late for us to be booking a holiday for March, but the truth is we didn’t know if we’d still have the dog or not. Back in May, we were told ‘It might be a month, it might be a week,’ and here we are, thankfully, 9 months later. And hopefully, he’ll still be coming with us in March. We couldn’t leave it any later to book, really. Several cottages flashed up as unavailable as we were scrolling down them, so we had to act.

Since the initial diagnosis in May, the dog has also had a stomach ulcer that nearly killed him and his liver has been protesting at the medication to help his back and legs. He had to go from taking anti-inflammatory tablets every day to having an anti-inflammatory injection once a month. He’s still on the pump inhibitors twice a day, but we’ll be weaning him off those soon, we hope.

It’s all been a bit pricey, and if he’d had insurance, they would have refused to pay it, due to his age and his condition. We’re only grateful that we’ve been in a position to pay. Once upon a time, I would have been borrowing money to pay for his vet bills. I won’t pay for insurance because they refused to cover my last dog’s cataract removal, and they can refuse to pay for a lot of procedural stuff, so I do wonder what’s the point.

I’ve also been watching the housing market. I would far rather not be moving house again any time soon. Every two years is just too much. But my spidey senses are tingling a little, and they’ve rarely been wrong before. This time, though, we’re looking at purchase prices. Retirement is on the horizon, for both of us, and it’ll soon be time to settle somewhere. We won’t need to move to suit the poet’s job.

I’d buy our current house in a heartbeat tomorrow, but we think they want about £150,000 more than it’s worth, and remember, we’ve been living here for the past nearly two years so we know what’s wrong with it, what needs doing, and how much it’ll likely cost. The village is super, though, and our doctors alone are worth staying for if we can. We just might need to rein-in our preferences. At least for the next 4 years.

We’d love to move to the seaside, but for as long as he’s still working, we still need to be fairly central.

So, aside from wrenching words, this is what I’ve been doing.

6 thoughts on “Thursday 25 January 2024: Flying visit

  1. I figured something was up. I hope you find the perfect place soon! Putting it out there, knowing what you want, is half the battle. Would your landlord negotiate with you at all? Or is it very much a seller’s market there? Moving every two years is a lot.

    1. I think she would, if we weren’t such a distance apart. We could buy a whole house for £150k if we wanted. She did put it up for sale before refurbishing it to rent, but even the locals said it was way overpriced. It’s a nice refurbishment, but she did some strange things, like take out a second toilet, remove a pantry, steal a chunk from one of the bedrooms to make the bathroom bigger when she could have just put a shower over the bath, and, we think, block up all the air vents and the chimney. It needs the damp addressing, a new roof, a new garage, and new windows, so there’s definitely wiggle room. She’s missed a trick because after a hike in prices post-lockdown, they’re now on their way down again, so again, there may be wiggle room there too. I always keep a close eye on prices, though, for renting and for buying, and when we put my mom’s and dad’s house up for sale last year, I hit the valuation on the nose!

  2. Poor Rufus and poor you. It’s hard when a dog is ailing and old. Hope he keeps going a while yet.
    Good luck with any decisions made for the future. We would love to live by the sea. We seriously considered Scarborough for a while. As it happens, John’s mum needed to go into a care home and we chose Holmfirth. (She lived in Warrington, but all the family were elderly). Meantime both the girls, with grandchildren, returned to this locality. We simply didn’t run fast enough!

  3. Moving to the sea sounds great, I wanted to do that ten years ago when my mum passed away but ended up moving into the house, we’ve got itchy feet again, hubby was 60 at Christmas and I’m 60 later this year and we’ve talked and made plans but I don’t think anything will happen, why? Because my selfish son sees the house as ‘his inheritance’ and doesn’t think we would like a life, a future, he even ask if he could borrow £200 the other day to get a dog on freeads!

    1. If it’s what you and Chris want to do, then do it. He’ll still have an inheritance! And if he doesn’t want to live by the sea, when it’s his turn, he can sell up.

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