Today we signed the agreement with the property management company to rent out our house. I initialed thrice and put my signature at the end, alongside my husband’s. It’s really real now: we are leaving our little house and moving far, far away. Even if we were to back out of the trip itself, we would have to find somewhere else to live. How strange.

The strangest part, however, was when the agent asked me somewhat sheepishly if we were married. Not knowing whether we were legally married or just living in sin, she had drawn up two agreements, one with  my husband on it and the other with both of our names. By reflex, I almost told her to use the one with his name on it, because in my mind, he is still the owner of this house. He is kind enough to let me live here, but even after almost two years, it still hasn’t completely sunk in that, by law, I am a co-owner of a house.

Last year’s garden project and this summer’s manic bout of painting, scrubbing, building, etc, has certainly made it sink in a lot faster. I am putting all my heart and energy into this house, ironically just as we’re getting ready to leave it. But to this date, nothing has made me feel more like a homeowner than signing a rental agreement to let someone else live here for a year. Isn’t it strange how that happens? You don’t realize how much somewhere is home until you leave. Now someone else will get to spend a whole year sitting on this lovely patio that we just finished a few weeks ago:

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But that is life, and we will come back to it. In the meantime, here’s some more photos from today’s door painting efforts:

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