Ironically, all of us were experiencing very mixed feelings about leaving Valencia so soon. I was worried that we would not learn Spanish as quickly in a community like Javéa, and being more remote was going to make further travel more complicated. Also having Anthony here to guide us has proven invaluable. He - with his wife Victoria and 2 small children, Isabella and Antonío - has a wonderful family and we would miss them terribly. Having experienced condo living for our entire married lives, Bill and I both keep craving an outside space. However, we seem to be very drawn to more urban areas because we really enjoy the stimulation and accessibility they provide.
So, yesterday, as we sat searching the web for someplace to go next (our current lease ends Friday), our doorbell rang. It was Anthony checking in to see if we had finally figured out how to use our new phones (that's another whole story). We knew that our apartment would not be available after Friday because he was moving his parents into it (they were supposed to only be here for a week but ended up needing to stay much longer after his 75 year old father took a nasty fall on their second day).
Anthony had previously mentioned that he has several apartments around the city that he rents out, but we knew nothing more than that. Bill explained our situation to him and asked what he might have available for us. He took us upstairs - to the apartment across the hall from his - and showed us a very large, 2-story (loft) unit similar to the apartment that he and his family live in. It is currently rented to a man from New Zealand whose lease is up at the end of the month. Provided that the tenant does not want to renew (his secretary has apparently told Anthony that he doesn't, but Anthony needs confirmation), the apartment would be available for us. It would only be a little more expensive than the house in Javéa (actually less when the cost of utilities, car rental and extra charges are factored in).
Though not a yard, the new apartment has a nice sized terrace with a pretty view where Bill could put some potted gardens in the spring. We would be in the neighborhood that we are finally starting to become familiar with and we can walk, bike or take a short taxi ride to anything we need (Anthony has 2 bikes that he will let us use and we can rent/buy some for the kids). Travel from Valencia is easy, with different kinds of trains and an airport nearby. We have a multitude of options to begin some intensive Spanish instruction and, perhaps, some art classes. Like anywhere else, we still need to investigate the schools, but being in a larger city affords us more options.
As the other apartment would not be available until the end of the month, we will be temporarily homeless yet again. Bill - brilliantly - realized that now would be an excellent time for us to utilize our Spain rail passes and get some traveling in. Monday will be Henry's birthday, and we had already promised him that we would try to spend it in a castle (pretty cool place to turn 9), so that is what we will do. Plans aren't finalized yet (are they ever?), but we want to take the night train to Granada on Friday, stay a couple of days, then go to Seville for a few days more. From that region, we will likely head north and try to fit in Barcelona and some northern towns. Luckily, Anthony is going to give us some storage space while we are gone, so we can travel very light!
I slept very well last night, feeling at peace with these recent changes of events. I realize that it isn't finalized yet, but being able to stay here for awhile satisfies many of my previous misgivings. And who knows, tomorrow I may just post something else entirely different - this is an adventure, after all!