As I am writing this, Eric is peacefully sleeping next door. It is almost midnight on Bonaire Island and 7 hours time difference were not such a big deal as I would have expected; the little guy needs some more cuddles before sleep and woke up extremely early (like 5:15, even before the sunrise) for a couple of days, but now things are starting to settle. I still have lots of questions and doubts about our life plans, but as I see him full of joy and laughter the whole day and people saying he seems to be very happy, I know we are in the right place. Now that he sleeps, sweet and relaxed, babbling from time to time as he dreams, I get the chance to see how much he grew and I can’t believe how quickly time passes… almost two years and a half! Soon he will be a big boy and will need us less and less; we need to spend time with him now, because these years will never come back!
We are in the Dutch Caribbean, thousands of kilometres away from home, family and friends, just the three of us in a completely different environment than what we are used with. The first week passed quickly and now things are starting to settle. We rented an apartment, unpacked all our stuff (which of course is way more than what we need) and we are slowly getting a sense of “home”. We will stay here for a while and decide where to go and what to do next.
You probably never heard of Bonaire Island, most of our friends didn’t neither and even when we said Dutch Antilles it didn’t sound familiar for most people. We have to admit that, one year ago, we didn’t knew about this place neither. So there comes the logical question: why Bonaire?!? We heard this question hundreds of times during the last few months, in various forms and asked with different attitudes, from amazement, to disapproval or curiosity. Well… it’s complicated :). It was Andrei who had the idea to make a change in our lives, take a break and try a more relaxed life. It was clear to both of us we need be away from home for a while, to be able to do this properly, to completely detach and disconnect from the busy and stressful lives. Travel related activities were a natural addition to our plan, as this is the thing we like the most and consider it to be extremely beneficial for kids as well. As Andrei is a big fan of sunny, hot islands and totally hates grey weather, with foggy, rainy days, we started looking for never ending summer locations, not very touristic and where life happens slowly. I just wanted a very safe environment from all perspectives (crazy mum, I know). I mean here from climate (no severe weather conditions), to social and political stability, no serious local diseases and proper healthcare system, of course, in an English speaking community. Honestly, I would have preferred something closer to Europe. I know I will get homesick at some point, but, on the other hand, we have enough time to visit places closer to Romania after we return home.
We’re not sure yet for how long we will stay here, maybe 1-2 months, maybe half a year or even longer. We try not to force any decisions and let go with the flow, even though I am not yet used with it. We chose Bonaire Island to be able to have some stability and stay longer in case it will be difficult for Eric to travel often, even though it doesn’t seem to be the case. It took him couple of days to readjust to the timezone and location and now he is excited to have new things to explore each day. He often mentions, nostalgic, but not upset, our home and dear people from Romania. I encourage him to do so, as I want him to remember as much as possible. We look through pictures every day and talk about what he was doing back there. Modern technology is of great help on this and he is lovely video-chatting with grandparents (I never dreamed they will be willing to learn to use a smartphone, but they actually enjoy it a lot).
I will come back with more detailed posts about Bonaire Island soon, after we visit enough places here and to make a true impression about it. So far, Bonaire seems a wonderful vacation destination, far away from the usual touristic crowds that you see in many parts of the Caribbean.
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