The End of an Era

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It’s three months since I posted on this blog, so regular readers have perhaps been wondering what’s going on.

Well, the time has come to finally bring you up to speed.

At the beginning of the year, my wife and I came to the difficult decision to relocate back to England with our now nine-month-old son.

I guess at this point the big question is “why?” and it’s certainly one I’ve spent a lot of time answering amongst family and friends over recent weeks.

The fact is that there simply isn’t one easy answer to the question. It’s more like twenty different factors, each contributing to five-percent of the decision.

Our new beach - not in Portugal but in the UK
Our new beach – not in Portugal but in the UK

We spent some wonderful years in Portugal. Some of our time there came close to how we dreamed it would be; some things were easier than we expected; some things were far more difficult.

We learned a lot about ourselves in the process too. We learned what we need for a truly happy existence; we learned that you can be content in the cold and rain, and thoroughly miserable with the sun blazing through the window. Ironically, we also learned to build careers that allow us both to work from home, meaning that we now have more flexibility as to where we live in the UK than we did before we left!

Perhaps this is all a bit cryptic, and I guess that’s intentional, as I intend to refocus some energy on the blog in the near future and discuss all the things that contributed to our decision, as well as reporting on the ups and downs of our final months in the country.

For now, I will reassure you that our decision, although heart-wrenching in many ways, was the one that we unanimously made, and one we are extremely happy with. When we left for Portugal we were far more young and carefree; Now we’re a young family, with a different set of wants, needs and priorities. We feel the UK ticks more of our boxes for this next phase of our lives.

Meanwhile though, Portugal retains the part of our hearts it captured forever, and will surely call us back soon, if only for a holiday. Who knows what that priority list will look like in another five years?


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  1. Ah Ben.
    Well, you know that I know exactly how you feel and, to some extent, why.

    You also know how I feel at the other end.
    Our working lives changed in much the same ways yours did: something which enabled us to work differently on our return also.

    Onwards and UPwards ‘n’ all that.
    Plenty more life to be had.

    And you do get used to the rain and the cold again……..I’m told!

    You know where I am etc.

  2. Oh that’s sad – and yet good news, if you are happy with the decision 🙂 When you have children they do kind of take priority when planning out the next step in life and as someone who both loves and feels the need to get away from the UK, I can see the pros and cons for both. There are lots of wonderful and beautiful places in the UK where you now have the flexibility to enjoy and live a different kind of life to that which you had before. Wishing you and your little family well in the next chapter!!

  3. I am sure you have made the right decision, but it must have been a tough one for you both. All the very best for the future in the UK (or wherever you may end up in the future). Saz x

  4. Hi Ben & Louise: Big decision for you but I’m sure you’ve done the right thing and Hey! Portugal is only 2.5hrs away!
    Lots of luck and best wishes for the future. Anne

  5. Thank you all for you kind words and support. It was indeed a tough decision but one that we feel is the right choice for where we are in our lives at this point. The constant sunshine that we have returned to in the UK is making it a little easier!

    Best wishes, Lou x

  6. The things some people will do to get out of the Cabanas springtime beach clear up, good luck and best wishes
    Jeff & Wendy

  7. Best of luck to you both. We read your book and it inspired us to buy a place in Portugal! Will gradually move over there but keep a flat in England.Really enjoyed your blog and the one on food as well.Hope you continue blogging. Take care and best wishes Steve

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