As some of my readers may be aware, I am soon to move house – assuming I am able to find one (fingers crossed for tomorrow’s inspection). To occupy my time, to prepare and in an attempt not to spend any more time in the shops during the Christmas period, I have begun to pack.
Packing for me, is a marathon event. I don’t think I have that much stuff. I would say my hoarding levels are pretty average and I have downsized quite a few times over the years so I don’t find that I have things like old school newsletters, snippets from magazines that have long since gone out of circulation or random childhood toys lying around the house gathering dust. I don’t even have as many books as I used to – those were hard to get rid of and another the Kindle is useful, I don’t actually like it… I love the feel and smell of a good old-fashioned book.
Anyway, what I have discovered from all of this packing is that it takes bloody ages. Yes, it can take a little bit of time to wrap up breakable objects so that you don’t open a box to find a million shards inside, or possible worse, find an unfortunately decapitated figurine. That kind of packing is expected to take a bit. However, the bits that I have found that take up the most time is anything of any kind of sentimental value. Instead of throwing photo albums into a box, yes, not all of my albums have made it to digital – I know… don’t judge, I find that I have to sit down and flick through them. Random bits and pieces found at the back of closets that have spent a couple of years in the dark suddenly bring back memories from days gone by and the room that should have only taken an hour to pack, has suddenly taken 2.
I don’t know if everyone else struggles with this kind of thing. Yes, I have most definitely been accused of being too soft at times. I tend to travel relatively light but some objects and items are just irreplaceable. I remember having a jelly bowl. Nothing special, just a Pyrex glass bowl that can be found at many stores and when moving with my ex, it ended up with a chip out of the lip and had to be binned, since according to him it wasn’t safe. I cried for an entire day at the fate of that bowl. Not because it was a bowl, but because it had been my Grandmothers and I could remember all the jelly that had been served up at family barbecues. Little Freddo frogs would be included in the kids jelly, assorted fruits and more healthy treats in with the adults. It was just so innocent.
I have 3 boxes full of different bits and pieces that I have been given over the years from various people and it would be another jelly bowl incident, if anything in these boxes were damaged. I think I have included enough padding inside to protect even the most breakable objects on the planet and written FRAGILE, on ever available surface. Even so, I am sure that those boxes will find a way into my car and not into the moving truck. You just can’t be too careful about these things.
The other thing I have noticed is how much space boxes take up. I have moved the chaise which usually occupies a room of my study into my fiance’s office so that I can keep as many boxes as possible in my room and away from the rest of the house until moving day arrives. It is amazing how the contents of a couple of drawers that seem rather empty can end up taking up a box in itself. I am one of those people who tries to keep boxes separated by rooms as much as possible, although I also find that scarves, pillow cases and tea towels are great at wrapping valuables so a good portion of my wardrobe ends up in boxes destined for the kitchen or living room.
I have also discovered that packaging tape is pure evil. I bought one of those tape dispensers, I have used them countless times in the past. This time, the one I purchased decided to be difficult. I am quite certain it isn’t user error. The thing is just stupidly designed… You will just have to take my word on this. Anyway, I ended up tossing the dispenser in the bin and now I constantly fighting with the rolls of tape and trying to maintain a folded over edge so I don’t constantly have to drag my nails over the surface trying to find where the blasted stuff starts. I have begun to suspect a packaging tape elf has invaded my house and takes delight in messing with the ends of my tape. I know I left the edge slightly folded over to create a lip, not enough to waste much tape but certainly enough for it to be obvious and my packaging to go off without a hitch. But no. Every time I go to use the roll the edge has magically disappeared.
If I find that elf, even the big man himself won’t be able to save him…I would blame the other half but he hasn’t gotten into the spirit of packing yet. That will wait for the lease to be signed. By then, I will probably have most of the house done. What can I say, I like to be organised.