Unfinished Business: Back in Nova Scotia


Wolfville, Nova Scotia

We have been back in Nova Scotia for a month now and it has been somewhat of a roller coaster ride since we left the sunny beaches of Guanacaste, Costa Rica. We accomplished everything we had hoped for and more during our first extended trip.


Playa Coco, Costa Rica, April 2016

We had promised ourselves that when we returned to Nova Scotia we would try to maintain the same feelings of optimism, relaxation, exploration and adventure that worked so well for us over the past three months. Things didn’t work out quite as we thought. Here we were in mid-July, the weather was very cool and damp and we were in the same house with our old routines and absolutely no interest even for a house showing. This left us to wonder if we were even going to be able to rent it before we left in September. We were starting to experience some of the same concerns and anxieties we experienced back in March.

Back Yard with Gardens

Back garden of our house

We took a deep breath and started to process it all again, but in a lighter way. There were plenty of routine things to keep us busy and the weather was excellent once the first week of chilly days passed. We had visits with family and tried to focus on the all of the positive aspects of the past three months and the excitement of our upcoming adventures, but little setbacks kept creeping in.


View from the Look-off near Canning, Nova Scotia

We couldn’t sell our house and had to try the rental approach. Some disappointments in that process also added to the reality of how much was out of our control when it comes to dealing with the housing market.

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Across the Grand Pre dykelands to Cape Blomidon, Nova Scotia

We also learned we are going to have to get used to the fact that not everyone is as excited or as free of responsibilities as we are. We have accepted the feeling of being outsiders in many ways as we set off on our travels. Other long term travelers have shared that they have experienced similar reactions. We are okay with this and will make everything work. We may never get this chance again and we want to make the best of this opportunity we have created!

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Taken from the London Eye while on our 2 day visit in 2009

However has been a lot of fun making the final preparations for our European fall. With the money we save by house sitting for a month we decided to treat ourselves to two weeks in London. We were there for two nights in 2009 and liked what we saw. We have rented an apartment and purchased a London Pass and Oyster card to become the ultimate tourists. We’ll let you know how they work out but they do seem like a great way to see many of London’s top attractions at somewhat reasonable cost.

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London Tower Bridge 2009

We also have our train tickets for the trip to Portugal in October. We set out to be aimless nomads but we already have apartments booked in Lisbon and Lagos, Portugal as well as a cabina in Ecuador for the winter. Perhaps we aren’t quite as aimless as we thought, but we certainly allow random ideas and inspirations to take over our planning. We have also found that in order to get rentals within our budget we have to book early or when opportunities present themselves.


Habitant River near our house in Habitant, Nova Scotia

In the last few days things have turned around and we have a renewed sense of excitement. The biggest step forward is that we have secured a long term arrangement for our house. So when we leave for London we will truly begin our nomadic lifestyle and won’t look back.


Dartmouth, Nova Scotia with our Son, Erik and Tim’s Sister, Jennifer

The weather has been absolutely perfect for the past three weeks, our blueberries are ripening and we have spent some enjoyable time with friends and family. By being back here for the past month we have learned that it is easy to slip back into the familiar routine that we had been in for the past 10 years and that isn’t at all what we want. Our time in Costa Rica gave us a brief glimpse at what we have created through our years of planning so now we want to see it through!



So we say farewell to Nova Scotia with fond memories and open ourselves to an amazing adventure ahead of us when we leave on September 4th. Unlike our time in Costa Rica, which was primarily for relaxation and contemplation, the next few months will be new territory for us. We expect to be challenged, educated and amazed with our new lifestyle.

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The sky is our limit….

We really appreciate that you have followed along so far and hope you will enjoy our stories. We will continue to provide practical information on the areas we visit and express how we feel about our homes along the way and our new lifestyle. We would love to hear from you! Please feel free to comment below with your thoughts on what we are doing or experiences any of you have had from embarking on the same path.


About timannehall

We sold almost all of our belongings and left our home in Nova Scotia in April 2016 to experience as much of the world as we could. We spent over a year slow traveling in Latin America and Europe. For the next stage of our journey we are going to be based in Portugal and traveling from there.
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10 Responses to Unfinished Business: Back in Nova Scotia

  1. It sounds as if you’re really on your way. When you said the feelings of excitement have started to return I knew exactly what you meant. We too find we fall back into old routines whenever we return to Vancouver even though we housesit when we are there. And Vancouver also always ends up being a lot about doctors visits as we take care of aging bodies. But it’s always good to see all our friends again.
    I’ve never been to Nova Scotia. It looks beautiful.
    Happy travels! When do you leave?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Blueberries – mmm. Nova Scotia looks like a place we need to put on our bucket list. 🙂 We visited Montana and Washington states last summer where we’d lived for several years and were constantly wowed by the beauty that surrounded us. It’s too sad that we had become inured to it while we lived there although the winters had a lot to do with our desire to leave! One thing we’ve realized over and over again is that dreams change and, while your home was perfect for you for several years, its good to follow your dreams in a new direction. Enjoy the familiar for a bit longer because soon you’re off on a whole ‘nother adventure that I’m looking forward to following! Anita

    Liked by 1 person

    • timannehall says:

      Thanks Anita. Nova Scotia is beautiful, and has a lot to offer. We’re definitely with you on winter though. It feels wonderful to be able to follow our dreams and see what lies ahead. All the best, Tim & Anne


  3. Kathy says:

    All the best to you both as you venture off on your exciting adventure and new lifestyle. What a wonderful opportunity you have ahead of you, take it all in and enjoy every minute! I’ll definitely be following along! Kathy xo

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Slow Travel in Retirement: First Year Reflections and Looking Ahead | A New Latitude

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