After 2 years of counting down and 1 wrong start (we were supposed to leave at the end of September 2020) we have finally moved to Portugal!
Monday the 29th of March finally the time has come🥳 Around 9 o’clock we started, together with our friends Carola, Andy, Rick and Karl, we loaded the truck with our stuff in Aalsmeer. Somewhere around 11:30 our house was empty and the truck completely full, to the rim! It sounds easy but how much stuff could someone own?😅 But this was not the end of it…..
From Aalsmeer Eugene, June and Andy drove to Utrecht. There was an even bigger truck waiting. Our belongings were moved into this large truck. The big truck we shared with Astrid and Serge who just like us, were moving to Portugal. We got to know them during the process towards the emigration. They are building a small scale holiday resort in Fuseta, Celebra a vida! What a coincidence and lucky that we could arrange this together. Everything went well, even in Utrecht. So far so good. Meanwhile I needed to take the car to the garage to get 'export’ license plates. When I arrived at the garage it all went wrong! The man who was supposed to help me fell ill and was upstairs, ‘resting’. If I could return around 16:00? “Uhh… No sir, I am in a hurry! I am about to move to Portugal…” I quickly looked for another garage where I could be helped at such a short notice. Found it! “Of course, you can come over”. Great! When I arrived there this gentleman asked me “Where are the license plates?” he asked. I yelled in shock; “You make those right?”. Something about miscommunication huh😅 Luckily he knew someone in Vijfhuizen, 20 kilometers further, a colleague garage that could make the plates. So, on my way to Vijfhuizen. In this garage I had great service and received the export plates. Quickly went back to Aalsmeer. Picked up Eus and June and said bye to grandpa and grandma! And there we went again this time to my grandma. I find it hard leaving her behind. She is 89 years old. Too old to come with us, she did not want that. So, we bought her an iPad and gave her a crash course to FaceTiming. She is a talent at it already, she FaceTimes us every day since😉 To get some sleep before our long journey starts, we stayed the night at our friends Dorine and Chantal. Tuesday morning we got in the car really early. On our way to France, Where we stopped around 19:00 to get some sleep in Poitiers. We would have loved to get some extra kilometers in but the French curfew ruined that for us. Wednesday morning around a quarter to six our journey continued towards Bordeaux/ North-Spain. Through Spain we drove to the south of Portugal. Exact 22:00 we crossed the border. Until then every border was easy to cross, but here we were stopped. Passports, check, and the question “ What are you doing here? The border is officially closed”🥴 "Well sir, we are here to reconstruct our farm!” He wanted the papers just to be sure, check! 20 minutes later we were on the road again. With a small stop at the McDonalds, we finally drove onto our own property. And there was our new Home!
On Good Friday the truck arrived in Olhão en drove to Astrid and Serge to get their belongings out first. We helped to get everything out, when we are done here we can start at our place. 2 hours later we were done and the chauffeur drove to Moncarapacho, to our farm. With help from Dima, Miguel (and even a bit of help from the driver) we too, were done after about 1,5 hours.
Because it was a holiday in Portugal Dima, Miguel and the driver went home to their families. There we were. Outside. With all of our belongings around us. Quickly we continued to organise. Some things could go into the house and others went into the container. Good it is a 40 feet container😁 With the weekend in front of us, we had enough time to organize and to clean up, no problem. Now, time to relax after a long day. With a glass of wine, we cheered to a beautiful future!
Besides the move, there is so much that comes with it. Finishing things in Holland, like work contracts, the selling of our old home, the ending of insurances and subscriptions etc. And getting all of that back in Portugal. One thing is quicker and easier to arrange than the other. Registration was easy. Just go by the Junta de Frequesia (government office) in Moncarapacho and after a signature of the mayor, you are outside in no time. The import of the car in a different story. Eventhough we are making use of a company that does it for us, it did not happen in 14 days unfortunately. Now, maybe good Friday and easter had something to do with that. You don’t know, it is just how it goes here in Portugal. Now that we have no transportation the coming days, we did some extra groceries.
The upcoming days we have enough to do on the land. Between the fruit- and olive trees. Enough to do before the building of the farm really starts. Of course I will keep you up to date😃
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