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It was nine years ago this month Jay and I closed our front door in Wiltshire for the last time and headed north. I had a rough idea of the location we were heading to, sounds crazy now, but we had rented a cottage unseen in an area we had never visited. Our trip to Scotland the December before had taken us to the west coast and we had travelled no further east than Inverness. The whole thing was a huge adventure. Jay, his Dad and brother had driven most of our furniture up the week before and Jay’s only comment was “don’t get upset when you see the house”. An ominous start.

It was a combination of things that helped us decide to make the move. Infertility was a big part of it. We had both been through the wringer for many years and I especially needed to break free from that. Jay’s brothers had both moved to Devon a few years before and his parents had recently moved back to the Midlands, so Jay’s anchors to the town of Westbury were gone. It just seemed the right decision for us.

So there we were, on the first Friday in June, doing a great impression of the Clampets in our little Nissan Micra with our three-year old dog, Willow and our cats (rest in peace Rolo, Smartie and Blossom, we still miss you) in the back. We towed a trailer with the last of our stuff which did not go in the lorry the week before. (Including the TV and Sky dish. It was the final season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer… no way was I missing that!)

I remember stopping on the A9 at about midnight and marveling over the fact it was not completely dark. We finally reached our destination around three in the morning, threw the duvet on the bed Jay had put up the week before (we had been camping in the living room of our Westbury house for the last week) and crashed.

We woke a few hours later and it may sound crazy, but I think it was the quiet that woke us.  There was no banging of car doors from neighbours heading to work, no traffic on the road out front, in fact the only sound was the rushing of the River Spey as it flowed past. The cottage was small and scruffy with grass that reached my waist, but we soon made it home.

Time has sped by since our big move. We have lived in three houses. The cats who travelled with us have all passed on, but Willow is still here. We have added and lost four pawed furry pets. We have both made some good friends but most important we adopted our two girls. The biggest adventure of all.

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