Three weeks and counting….
Three weeks on Tuesday, we get the keys to the new flat. That’s the day we check it out with the building company to make sure that the appliances actually work and all the doors fit etc. The builders then have the rest of the month to fix anything that needs fixing before we move in. And after twenty-one months in a ‘temporary’ flat, I can’t wait to hang up pictures and put out all the little ornaments and souvenirs that have been in packing cases for the duration.
So our next removal is imminent. It’s an art, moving house. There’s such a lot to keep in mind…
A – Arrange to take at least a week off work. Your purse might not thank you, but your sanity will.
B – Boxes. You can’t have too many. Large, medium, small, cardboard, wooden…
C – Calculate how many helpers you need, and then add two for emergencies.
D – Don’t forget to buy a few sturdy paper carriers too – these can be filled with odds and ends that you don’t want in a removal box. Like the coffee machine, which you’ll need to use within a few minutes of arriving in the new place.
E – Energy drinks. Or bars. Or energy anything, really… Worth a try even if you’re sceptical, because energy is the one thing you need tons of when you move.
F – Fill your tank a day or two beforehand. You don’t want to run out of petrol halfway to your new home.
G – Goodbye round – make sure you catch neighbours a day or two beforehand as well. They’re the ones you won’t necessarily be in touch with again, and it’s nice to say goodbye.
H – Heaven. And it will be heavenly, seven weeks on Friday when you’ve unpacked the last box and sorted (most of) the teething problems. Hang on to the thought.
I – If you have animals in the family, make appropriate arrangements for them. You do not need a homesick dog or a freaked-out cat in the mixture, the first day in your new place.
J – Joy. See H.
K – Kettle. See D. Not everyone likes coffee.
L – Leaving your old home is tough, whatever the circumstances. Be prepared for a few tears as you drive away. See N.
M – Make sure the kids are well-prepared for the move. Have a good supply of treats and hugs ready – moving house is just as emotional for them as it is for you.
N – Never. What you never do is look back when you turn the corner out of your old street. Seriously.
O – OMG. This will be your most frequent utterance during the last few days in the old place and the first days in the new. Accept it. Move on.
P – Post-its. If you’re going to use these to label anything, get the super-strong ones. Normal ones fall off too easily. Even better is simply masking tape, the kind painters use. It’s easy to write on and guaranteed not to fall off.
Q – Quick. This doesn’t often apply to a removal. Even if – like us – you’re moving 200m down the road, it all takes TIME…
R – Removal men. They do this much better than you can. Don’t get in the way. Reward with doughnuts.
S – Sanity. As in yours. See A, D, W and Z. And most of the rest, too.
T – Tissues. See L.
U – Under the circumstances, you’re doing very well. Say this to everyone, and try to believe it yourself, too.
V – Valuables. Pack and transport these yourself. That way, if anything happens, you know who to blame. (I’ve already broken a little china dog that was older than I am…)
W – Wine. Enough said.
X – All suggestions welcome.
Y – You are bound to have some regrets about leaving your old life. Accept this too and look forwards. See T and W.
Z – zzz – you may want to sleep for a week after your removal. See A.