Dear all,

I have only recently realised that I have been living in Italy for a little bit more than six months. So I decided to give you a sort of update, an overview, whatever you would like to call it.

After having lived in Italy for six months, I’ve realised a couple of things. First of all, I’m not brilliant at not working. It took me at least four months to be able to deal with the fact that I don’t have a regular job and that I have to find a way to fill my days with something that gives my life some meaning and purpose. One of the means to fill my days has been, of course, learning Italian. I’ve definitely improved my Italian. I wouldn’t say I’m fluent, but I can manage. Another means of filling my days has been going back to basics when it comes to cooking. Now that I have time, I can really prepare as much as possible myself and I no longer have to rely on already prepared products that are being sold in the supermarket (this includes bread, but it excludes pasta (I can really not do pasta myself, not yet)).

Secondly, because of all this “natural” cooking, my health has improved massively. Not just because of the cooking, also the correct amount of medication has improved my health of course. But my way of eating, my diet more or less, is very important to decrease the chronic inflammation that I’m suffering from and this is something that my medication cannot help me with.

Lastly, since I don’t have a regular job or income and we are depending on only one regular income (which is more than enough), I’ve been spending less money. And I’ve come to one of the most important realisations of all; having a big house, being able to buy new clothes every other week, going out to restaurants on a regular basis, or spending time on a tropical beach to finally relax, are not at all what I need in life, fortunately. I would never have thought that I would be so much happier with less than with more and I can highly recommend it to anyone.

What do I see for myself in the next six months? I don’t really know and I don’t care so much (I’m now coming across as super relaxed about this, but I still freak out from time to time. I’m still me). I’ll definitely focus on improving my Italian, so that I can look for a more regular job in the near future and I’ll be focusing on my health (that is one of the most important things and neglected far too often).
Hopefully I’ll have some nice visits from my Dutch friends and family, who perhaps like to enjoy some Italian sun (which, honestly, makes life a lot easier as well). But I haven’t really planned a lot of things, so in reality, life could take me anywhere and I can only hope I’ll take my time to enjoy it.

From Italy with love,

Merel