Our first year, part 1
When I moved to Slovenia in March 1995 to be with Bine, we had spent exactly 1 week together. Despite this very short period of time, we both knew we wanted to be together and so the decision that I would move to Slovenia was made quickly. Bine was a truck driver at the time and had a permanent job, while I temporarily worked in an office for an employment agency. Neither of us had anything, no savings, no possessions. At that time, I was living at home again, Bine rented a room in the house of an elderly lady. The boss he worked for back then, offered us his basement room to live in temporarily until we would find something else. There was a bed and a closet and there was a small bathroom. My mother quickly sewed some curtains for the windows and a month after meeting Bine, I returned to Slovenia with the intention of living there forever and building a life together.
It was a bit strange to see each other again after that month I had been in the Netherlands without him. Very uncomfortable. Fortunately, that did not last long. Actually, I was going to look for a job, but once there I really didn’t want to be left alone in his boss’s house every week while Bine was on the road driving the truck. I didn’t know anyone else there, didn’t speak the language, had no transport, and felt lonely and miserable. I insisted that I wanted to go with him and not just stay “at home”. That was a bit difficult but luckily I got my way :). The year that followed was a rollercoaster. We have had some very nice and very difficult moments. Still, I am grateful that we had that time together. We were, of course, thrown in the deep end because we had only just met and were suddenly together 24 hours a day. I enjoyed the driving and the feeling of freedom that it brought back then. We got to know each other very well in a short time and that was not always rosy and moonlit of course. In addition, the cabin of the truck was very small, and sleeping in it was a disaster. Every night we had to throw pillows over and Bine still slept with his legs over the steering wheel. Fortunately, we were still young and flexible, but when I see the photos now and think back to….. jeez.
After a while, we found a house that we could rent. It was the top floor of an empty house somewhere outside a village. There were 2 rooms and a toilet. No kitchen, no bathroom. A friend of ours, who was a carpenter, made some kitchen cabinets and a countertop. We felt on top of the world :). Until winter came …… because there was no heating either, just a wood stove. And because we were away from home all week and only came home on weekends, the house was not heated during the week. It was so terribly cold when we got home on Friday evening! We also didn’t have a bed and slept on mattresses on the floor with several layers of clothing on. We bought an electric heater for next to our »bed«, but that didn’t help much either. We couldn’t get the house warmed up in just a weekend and we often had to leave again on Sunday evenings.
But the surroundings were beautiful, and I was on skis for the first time in my life that winter. Bine borrowed them from his mother to teach me to ski a bit. They were very old ones, with “normal” leather shoes that you hooked into them. But what fun we had! And of course, I had never experienced so much snow in the Netherlands before. So many memories …… more next time.