Well, tomorrow is another trip done. I'm going home, briefly. Months ago, I booked a long weekend trip in the Blue Ridge mountains, and so we're packing the car as soon as I get home and headed out Thursday morning.
It's been a minute since I did a road trip with Inappropriately Hot Foreign Wife, who is a good travel companion, once we get out of south Florida, anyhow. She is an absolute pill when it comes to highway driving close to home for some reason, but once we're a bit out of town she settles right down.
I don't plan on being home for the holidays this year. It's my year to work Thanksgiving, Christmas AND New Year's day, anyhow, and this year we've been in the final stages of a BIG project that has been in the works for about 3 years, and finally got enough of our ducks in a row to pull the trigger.
I bought us, I suppose I should say WE bought us, a house in Brazil. Closing is next week.
I bought a house in Brazil about 8-10 years ago, a tiny little place for my mother-in-law. I paid for it and put it in her name, so technically we don't own property in Brazil yet. The old house itself is too small for anyone but her and her maid/caregiver, my MIL being blind as a bat. It's also across town from the rest of the massive giant family, which makes visiting happen less frequently than it should.
So, yeah, my pasty fat ass is going International.
The new house is in a city named Vitoria Da Conquista,(Victory of the Conquest, because conquistadores were badass mofos) in the state of Bahia. It sits on the leeward side of a ridge on a plain, giving part of the city a gradual slope with ravines cut in it from a few streams and rivers. It's arid land, very temperate- when I was there in August, it was winter, and temps were about 60 at night and 70 in the day, while summer sees temps that usually max out in the low 80's because of the altitude.
Yeah, I am not a city person. I hate urban areas, and yet I will now have about half an acre in an established urban area. And me, a guy who likes water and green things, am in an area that is about as dry as Oklahoma. It's NOT a pretty city. It has its parts, of course, as it's an old city built on the crossroads connecting the fazendas, the massive farms with hereditary family workers, as well as coffee plantations, and the port of Salvador, the nearest seaport with intermodal cargo transportation about 300 miles away.
The house and property? It's pretty gross right now. It was a family home for ages, but the family moved to Sao Paolo, and the property has been vacant for a decade or more. The house is a 3 bedroom, 2 bath behind a gate and a facade facing the street, which is a quiet neighborhood, in Brazilian terms, anyhow. It's 70's tile everywhere, with a laundry shed and 2 additional bedrooms detached in the yard.
Being an arid and temperate area, there's a lot of outdoor living, which appeals to me, as do the massive walls that surround the property, which, while ugly at the moment, will give great privacy and potential to use the large yard as I damn well see fit. Thank God labor is cheap there, because there is a lot of it, and while I don't relish not being there to do much of it, I'll have to trust the architect and construction company who will do the work, which will be done in steps- first to made the house adequate and cozy and neat so I can move my mother-in-law in and sell off her house, second to landscape in preparation for major upgrades, including putting in irrigation and a pool, and third to build a masive open outdoor kitchen, living room and cabana with 2 really nice bedrooms over it, on the far side of the house, which will be for our use when we're in town.
If I survive to retirement, I will snowbird it and live in Brazil for a few months a year. Since Brazilian banks don't want to get involved with Americans right now, the current leftist shitstains in both the US AND Brazil in power being dicks, paying cash for everything is a hellacious burden, but OTOH, no big monthly bills.
But OMG what a dump it is at the moment. I'm being ordered to view it as a canvas, a velvet Elvis, ready to be overcoated and redone to our taste. I've got the Mrs on it so I don't need to worry we'll trade velvet elvis for dogs playing poker, at least. She does have good taste.
Owner is a childhood friend of Inappropriately Hot Foreign Wife.