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Creating an Idyllic Life in Adakavas

We recently had an article featured in our local newspaper, Tauragės Žinios. We’ve done our best to translate it for you. Some phrases just don’t translate that well – I hope we haven’t lost any of the original content or sentiment with our translation. Enjoy!

From his native Adakavas a decade ago, like many Lithuanians at the time, Arūnas Vladička decided to go abroad to work. Although he planned to spend only a few months in Ireland, while there he met his future wife, June Molloy, and ended up staying for longer. Now they are creating their idyllic life back in Adakavas. June bravely, albeit with an accent, speaks some Lithuanian. They are about to finish completing their new home beside Arūnas’s parents house. It’s easy to sense from the couple how much it all means to them – the house renovation, the fresh Lithuanian air and life without constantly rushing.

Not everyone understands
On Tuesday, when we visited the family home, there was a great atmosphere. Arūnas says that in a few days they are expecting to move into the new home. Their faces glow – clearly showing that June and Arūnas embrace the little things, creating for themselves a life that many of us can only dream of. They do not pay the slightest attention to any skeptical and questioning glances they receive.

Arūnas says they are often asked why they are building their family nest in a rural area of Tauragės, but the smiles on their faces are the best answer – they are simply happy here.

Went away to work – brought home a wife
Arūnas nostalgically remembers their first meeting. He explains how a decade ago he met his future wife, June, in Co. Clare, in a local bar where he was drinking with friends after work. Their unexpected meeting was crowned three years later with a wedding.

Arūnas told his how, in Dublin, he worked for a time as a personal trainer, then later had his own clinic where he practiced neuromuscular therapy.

Together, this 40-year-old woman and 33-year-old man have seen and done a lot so far – they have travelled a lot and seen many countries. June’s sister lives in Australia, so the couple also considered moving there. However, considering the distance and difficulties keeping in contact with people back home, as well as the fact that Australia is quite expensive, they decided against it.

Now they are enjoying the sense of freedom, peace and quiet that they found in Adakavas. Asked if she sees any major cultural differences, June says it’s harder to connect with Lithuanians. She says Irish people are more open and friendly – always ready to say hello and to chat.

Wife is considering a bigger farm
They couple have been in Adakavas for about a year now and are almost finished renovating their home. They have started to grow fruit, vegetables and herbs and they bought 12 hens. Arūnas said it was not a big cultural shock for June to come and live here as they have been visiting his homeland regularly over the years. They are married now for seven years. Arūnas says that the most important thing right now is to finish the house and then they will figure out what they will do for a living.

Arūnas joked that June would like a much bigger farm with cows and pigs, but for now they have enough with what they have. He told us that in general his wife’s passion is everything to do with food – including cooking from scratch and growing a variety of crops – and that possibly this might gradually turn into an additional source of income. She already has her own blog, where she shares a wide variety of photos, recipes, moments of family life in the village and their travel experiences. For more details see http://www.adakavas.lt or https://myfoododyssey.com/. It includes very positive emotions, new experiences and discoveries – I have no doubt you will find something you like there.

Taurages Zinios 2

High praise for Lithuanian countryside
While we’re talking to June and Arūnas, the smiles never leave their faces. I get the impression that they are always this optimistic. Arūnas says that their philosophy is to start with yourself and how you look at life. According to him, if you want you can see only the negative things, but if you choose can always see the bright colours in everything.

In essence, if you decide to be negative you will only see the negative around you, not even realising what you’re doing. He was saying that, for example, we do not watch TV and choose very carefully the information we let into our heads. And we live a lot healthier for that.

“Sun, forests, fields – it’s beautiful here”, echoed his wife, who likes walks in the countryside on hot summer days or relaxing at a nearby river enjoying a barbecue.

Arūnas believes that many Lithuanian’s live more to show what they have than for themselves. Lithuanians are quite closed, often feeling unhappy, which he said he particularly noticed when in Ireland. He recounts many stories of Lithuanians overseas who work hard to receive a good income, but who are locked in small groups, avoiding integration and thus feeling alienated from Irish society.

Many of them would like to come back to live in Lithuania but don’t know what to do here – they have become used to an easier life and easier money. Of course, they can afford much more in Ireland, but their hearts remain at home.

Speaking about life in Adakavas, Arūnas says that to live here is quite cheap, especially as the couple use natural food that they grow in their own garden.

Considering several options for the future
When asked to imagine their lives in five or ten years, June and Arūnas said they were looking at several options. They might start their own business as Arūnas has experience in the health industry and June is also a qualified massage therapist. Another option is for June to continue developing her blog and possibly create a food product.

(From Tauragės Žinios Newspaper. Original article available here.)

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31 Comments Post a comment
  1. Tanya #

    So nice to see this bog …..im in the middle of the move to Lithuania( have the house but one leg still in Ireland the other in Siauliai )and Its encouraging to see you made the plunge and it worked out so well

    Liked by 1 person

    March 13, 2015
    • Oh wow, Tanya – how interesting! I always assumed I was the only Irish person here (outside of Vilnius!) Hope your move goes well for you. If I can be of any help or if you have any questions (or if you get here and fancy a glass of homemade wine and some Irish-style banter!) just drop me a mail.

      Like

      March 13, 2015
      • Tanya #

        that would be nice thanks as i to thought i was the only Irish one in a Lithuanian village too….and the wine yes as i may need it as i only have 4 walls, windows and a roof(and and a very nice loo with a view in the garden) as my new home so with wine goggles on it should look much better :))

        Liked by 1 person

        March 13, 2015
      • Those loos in the garden are pretty special, aren’t they?! We’ll have to swap war stories some day. I’m less than an hour away so give me a shout any time.

        Like

        March 14, 2015
  2. You both sound very happy and are where you belong. You are much more ambitious than I am. Can’t wait to see the pictures.

    Liked by 1 person

    August 14, 2014
  3. longchaps2 #

    Well I think the title of this article sums it up perfectly. It was fun to hear how you two met and a little about your lives together. Your house turned out amazing. A labor of love. There is something to the idea that positive thoughts bring about positive results. I’m a believer myself. This is the proof and I eagerly await more chapters to your story. Congratulations June.

    Liked by 1 person

    August 13, 2014
    • Thanks Susan! It is hard work but I wouldn’t have it any other way. We love our lives here. We’re still scrubbing up the house and adding finishing touches. As soon as it looks like a home I’ll start posting photos – hopefully in the next few weeks. (That thing I mentioned to you a while back is happening in two weeks – yikes! – so the pressure is on to finish!)

      Liked by 1 person

      August 13, 2014
      • longchaps2 #

        Ohhhh….two more weeks…okay NOW we’ve got a time table, lol. Will be keeping my eyes peeled. Hey, and looking forward to those pictures too.

        Liked by 1 person

        August 13, 2014
  4. Congratulations on the article! Hopefully it will bring you some well deserved positive attention.

    We are also starting a garden and fixing an old house. We moved from the United States to a small village in Ukraine. We find your blog to be very inspirational. Keep up the good work!

    Liked by 1 person

    August 9, 2014
    • Thanks, folks. Just had a peek at your blog. It’s good to see some positivity in Ukraine despite recent events. I very much look forward to seeing your cob house!

      Like

      August 9, 2014
  5. Great article June. I admire how you have built such a life for yourselves. I hope you weren’t too upset with the journalist for giving away your age like that. Not that you look it. Must be the great lifestyle. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    August 7, 2014
    • Thanks! If I hadn’t already posted about my recent milestone birthday I think I would have just lied. My stock answer us 32!

      Like

      August 7, 2014
  6. Fantastic article! Congrats on finishing the house and moving in – how exciting!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    August 7, 2014
    • Thanks Daina! How was your trip to LT? Hope it went well and that you got some nice weather!

      Like

      August 7, 2014
      • Thanks for asking, June! The three days my friend and I spent in LT were wonderful!! We stayed in Palanga (at a place called Senoji Palanga – just perfect!), and spent a day on the Curonian Spit (which I really enjoyed – loved the peaceful nature and cute towns), checked out the Cold War Museum in Zemaitija National Park (definitely worth a visit!), hung out in Palanga, and stopped in a few places (including Hill of Crosses – which I’d been to about a decade ago) on our way back to Latvia. Because I’d previously spent time in Vilnius and Trakai, I think I have a good feeling for Lithuania now, so next time I’m in Latvia I’d love to see more of Estonia if I have the time. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        August 7, 2014
  7. What a great article June! You positivity and quest for a happy and simple life is inspiring!

    Liked by 1 person

    August 7, 2014
  8. I notice Beelzebub’s got his back turned in that picture… it’s more than clear what he thinks to all that 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    August 7, 2014
  9. Great article and congratulations on moving in…. I can imagine you’re excitement. I’m presuming the top photo is in your new home…. love the windows and the view 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    August 7, 2014
    • Thanks Margaret. Yeh, the top photo is the conservatory across the front of the house. It gives us a wonderful panoramic view of the surrounding area. It looks beautiful now, but I also can’t wait to see it in the snow!

      Like

      August 7, 2014
  10. Sounds like you really are living the dream! Well done on following your own path. It’s not that easy to do. x

    Liked by 1 person

    August 7, 2014
  11. Tracy O' Grady #

    Well done!! The very best of luck and success for the future, enjoy settling in to your labour of love!

    Liked by 1 person

    August 7, 2014
    • Cheers Tracy! Loving it all so far!

      Like

      August 7, 2014
  12. What a lovely article! You both look very happy. Great that you are just about to move back into your newly renovated home – exciting!

    Liked by 1 person

    August 7, 2014
    • Thanks Karen! It really is exciting moving into the new house – I’m like a child at Christmas!

      Like

      August 7, 2014
  13. Nice article 🙂 Thanks very much for sharing. Glad to hear you’re about to move in, or maybe you’ve already moved into your new home, huh? And I love the pics, the journalist was right – you do look very radiant

    Liked by 1 person

    August 7, 2014
    • Thanks Asta! Nothing like the country life to give a girl a glow! We moved in last Friday. We still have lots of cleaning and finishing to do, but so far I just love it!

      Liked by 1 person

      August 7, 2014
      • Vow, that’s awesome! Happy home warming and many many happy years in this house. Home is where your heart is, as they say, and seems you’ve found and rebuild yours already 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        August 7, 2014

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