Transitions on my Mind

Transitions on my Mind


1 year ago in July of 2013 our house in Bavaria was getting packed up for the move back to the USA
A year ago this week my husband, two cats & I were moving out of a spacious & bright three level house in the small Bavarian village of Seubersdorf that we had called home for close to three years. I was about five months pregnant & excited about the change.
Transitions for me are not only about saying good bye to one place & hello to another, although that is a compelling key feature. The momentum & chaos of moves is perhaps something I have come to enjoy from an organizational perspective: the challenge of all those moving pieces. I also so often enjoy the process of adapting & that in-between time of living out of your suitcase, wrapping up loose ends & doing all the final tightening up of travel & movement arrangements. That in-between space is an area I have traditionally enjoyed being in.
We have two cats. I adopted Ronja, approximately 9 years old now, in Ithaca, NY in 2005 & she has been my sweet, trusty feline sidekick through several moves over the years. Murphy, a Neblung like beauty who captures everyone’s hearts, was the one my husband & I chose to adopt at Fort Rucker, AL in 2009 when we decided it was time for Ronja to have a friend.
Lo & behold, best friends they did not become. On any given day at home,  Ronja prefers a mainly solitary & relaxed frame of life while Murphy, ever the socialite,  prefers company & frequent engagement.
Both cats have now been on two cross Atlantic moves & the recent, not entirely breezy, relocation to Hawai’i from Germany. What’s interesting is how different they become in transit. Timid Ronja gains a spunky curiosity that we almost only see now when moving & gregarious Murphy becomes surprisingly skittish & nervous.


The first time I moved to Hawai’i was in 1996 for a several months stint on Oahu & then onto the Big Island for a few years. After graduating from University of Hawai’i at Hilo in 2000 I was ready to set out & explore. Most of my moves since then have been motivated by curiosity of place. Jobs or study program followed. Since flying away from Hilo as a young adult in the Summer of 2000, I’ve lived in 4 countries & over a dozen cities. It’s probably as much restlessness as it is a genuine enjoyment of “starting from scratch,” no matter how good or reasonable it might have been in the placeI  left.
As I get older & my priorities shift, this boundlessness may no doubt change or begin to express itself in different ways.   I welcome the changes, as I have done in the past.


~ An extraordinarily boring photograph, the subject of which has a lot of meaning for me.
We are perched to do deep research about places to move next & as usual my mind is all over the map.
I love lists & often write to work things out so hung this in the living room to scale some thoughts down.
But I love how clean & Zen the blank paper is.
I think I will have to leave it like this ~
I remember back to one of my first big moves as a child (FL > CA). The living room was stacked with moving boxes in such a way that there was a corridor where I can recall being very happy to play in, comfortable & abuzz in the atmosphere & space of transition. I think about that time now, when I was a child.  Going with the flow, ready to jump. Like our cats, bound to land.
We have a couple more seasons left here on Oahu.  The possibilities & (more importantly) interest in staying are slim.  Our focus is on other areas but unlike many of my previous moves, the process feels different.  Almost radically different.
It is perhaps, as I am different too.