Destiny makes an offer

Searching for our dream property in Calabria was like putting the pieces of a puzzle together with your eyes closed. We just had this vague idea of “some place in Calabria” and we were open to investigating anything that struck our fancy (within our budget). We were looking at anything – whether it was a nice landscape or seascape, near a large town or a mountain village. The longer we spent on real estate sites the more our ideas evolved about what we wanted. We were definitely lucky in meeting our extremely patient real estate agent Yvonne. Originally from Manchester, Yvonne moved to Italy with her family and had local connections and contacts in the area.

It was an absolute bonus to have someone who spoke English and who also understood what it would take to just up and move to another country. Our search was so much easier having a bit of a kindred spirit to help with the endless parade of documents. While we were perusing her property website, we had found a lovely apartment with amazing views that caught our attention. We were seriously contemplating making an offer, when it was scooped up. At the time we were bitterly disappointed but once again disappointment saved the day!

After losing the opportunity of the apartment, we decided to revisit ideas of a more radical nature. If we missed out on a flat – how about a farm instead? If you told my purple-haired twenty-year old self that in twenty years I would be suggesting to my sister that we buy a farm in Italy – I would have laughed at you and then added in some colourful language regarding your mental health. However, there it was…let’s be farmers.

What do we know about farms? Other than visiting them as children….nothing. However, we did have a large family garden growing up and the thought of moving to a farm basically came down to…if I can cope with modern office life …how bad can chickens be? Of course as I write this, we haven’t dealt with chickens yet so there is plenty of room here for yelling “I TOLD YOU SO” in the future.

With our newly revised idea of “farming in Calabria” Yvonne had a few agricultural properties for us to go and visit when we arrived on vacation. We had seen a property on her website that really stood out….12.5 acres, olive trees, fruit trees, beautiful views of the mountains and  sea, close to the airport, close to the beach….just about everything we had envisioned.

It really was love at first sight. Sure it needed work but standing on the balcony over looking the valley and on to the sea, breathing in the scent of wild flowers and listening to the distant tinkle of bells on the sheep – we just hated to leave. There was even the added bonus of a castle ruin to add to the romance. It was like destiny was making us an offer and tempting us with another view of another life. All we had to do is accept. What do you do when destiny calls?

Get a mortgage.

The view from the balcony - the village of Cleto, Calabria

Laura Hamilton
Laura Hamilton


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