At the beginning of the film of The Fellowship of the Rings, Bilbo Baggins says that it is no bad thing to be able to celebrate a simple life. I agree whole-heartedly with the idea of living a simple life. However, I have altered this slightly to Living a Simple Life Richly. This is my aim.
We now live in the Riviera. If this gives you an idea that I have struck it rich then it couldn’t be more wrong. We have rented out our house in England and rent a tiny apartment here. It is, believe me, tiny. One little room, one dinky bedroom, a bathroom with a shower and toilet (and bizarrely, the biggest wash-basin I have ever seen outside of a hotel.) The total surface area is about 30 square metres. However, it does have a 10 metre square terrace. I am sitting on this now, typing out these words.
We would never be able to afford a house on the Cote d’Azur as big as the one we own in England. Unless someone like Steven Spielberg asks me for the rights to one of my novels. (Come on Steven, how about it?) We can, however, live here if we live a simple life richly.
I keep constant, neurotic track of our spending. Even though every day is different our spending is stubbornly sticking at about the same amount, 32 Euros a day. Yet, boy, does my life feel rich now. I glance above the laptop and can see the Mediterranean Sea. I have made lots of new friends.
Why didn’t I do this years ago, I ask myself. Oh well, I didn’t. But I have now.