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I did this a year ago, so let’s again. A lot’s changed, a lot hasn’t, and maybe I’ll be saying the same in a year. Or, maybe, I’ll be building on where I am now.

Austen completed her Masters at KU Leuven, and we moved back to Texas. Departed Brussels on July 31, and eventually arrived in Austin on August 1. We already had a lease, a bed, a mattress, and other essentials. We’ve since filled out the apartment, and added two young cats. The apartment isn’t yet home, but is increasingly comfortable.

Austin itself feels like an old pair of shorts. I fondly remember that they fit, but trying them on again even only a year and a half later, they no longer fit the same. I’m nostalgic for when they fit, and I don’t know how to bring that previous state into the present. And, like the shorts, I’m aware that the change was in myself — not Austin.

In the last year, other parts of my life have changed. My parents sold the house I grew up in, and are moving into a new house of their design — I’ll be helping to move in their furniture in just two days, and like a vulture, scavenging through the remains. There are already two Corbu lounge chairs and a pony lounge in my storage unit, but we don’t currently have the floor space. However, the dining table that was my paternal great-grandfather’s will soon find a comfortable home in my apartment. He used to butcher chickens on it, and now we’ll be eating veggies, seitan, and everything not-meat. Times change.

Moving is stressful, and on top of that, I’m spending most of the day in the Zello office. The days feel too short, and the time that remains to me after work for my own projects, the apartment, and hobbies feels increasingly lacking. I want to work out, meditate, and read when not at the office, but I want to do more than I’m able to make time for.

This will improve with time, and it’s reassuring that unlike in Belgium, we’ll have enough Winter light in Texas so as to have reasonable days in the coming fall and winter months. The Texas heat will lessen while always looming over the horizon, and everything will become easier.