I approached the task with rigor, writing lists, sorting things out beginning one month prior to our big move. For two weeks this was all I could talk about, frequently asking Mark what he thought: Should I bring both of Zoe's duvets or just the small one? Should we keep the big lamp that I loved, but which would need rewiring in Europe? Would it make sense to ship the $1 wine glasses that we never used? He eventually got really annoyed and we snapped at each other, he accusing me of worrying too much and me accusing him of not helping out with the decisions. Instead he kept talking about more abstract things such as the fact that we still hadn't heard from the estate agent in London in terms of where we could pick up keys to our flat, things we couldn't do much about other than try to call them during opening hours (which was never when he expressed his concern). Eventually we found a middle way, me managing most of the household stuff, putting lamps on craigslist, him endlessly surfing the internet for estate agent news and, to his credit, showing and finally selling the car.
Almost everything was ready a few days before the movers arrived, now I just needed pack and decide what things we could not live without for 2 months. It was tough, but I managed to squeeze everything for Zoe and me (Mark took care of his own stuff) into a large suitcase weighing 71 pounds. This was clothes (including light winter clothes, we won't see our boxes before November the earliest), two of Zoe's favorite teddybears, important papers such as immunization records, an inflatable tub for Zoe, two books for me and her cup and bowl. We were also bringing her small collapsable stroller in a separate cover so we could check it in.
For some reason those last days of packing melted into one another with us trying to make the most of it, seeing people for goodbye dinners, goodbye brunches and goodbye drinks. The Friday before the movers were coming Saturday morning was the most difficult day because Zoe had to say goodbye to her lovely nanny, something I still cannot even write about without getting tears in my eyes, and something that is worth a whole other post. I was in a blur, trying to finish some work, managing a new study (yeah, I had just started a new study 2 weeks before we moved, how smart was that?) and on top of that we sold our car, so I had to look after Zoe while cooking for the dinner party we held for our nanny that very evening. When our guests finally left just before midnight I realized that I still had to label everything that the movers were not to take, such as still unsold lamps, suitcases and furniture we were getting rid of. Mark went to bed and left me to it; around 2 am I tumbled into bed, my head still spinning, hoping for the best.
|Zoe and the all-important cupholder|
Flash forward to the evening where Mark had handed over the car to its new owners and finally, the movers had emptied the apartment and left us with the bare minimum to live with for the remaining two days. We went out to goodbye dinner with a couple of friends and were having a relaxing conversation when I suddenly realized, getting a chill down my back, that when I had put Zoe in the stroller so Mark could take her out that morning, I had taken off the cup holder because I knew he hated it (it was apparently in the way of his hand), and put it in the coat closet. The coat closet where the movers had packed everything from, including cup holder. How could I be taking Zoe for walks around London without a cup holder? How could I get my caffeine fix now? I interrupted everyone with my serious realization to the laugh of particularly Mark who did not share my distraughtness. After a bit of grumpiness from my side, he looked at me and said: If that is the worst thing that went wrong today, then we are pretty well off aren't we. And I agreed. We dubbed these small problems that we deal with 'cup holder problems', which reminds us everyday that we are so lucky to have what we have in terms of each other and Zoe, and wonderful people around us. And now I am off to spend £15 on a new cup holder because I really miss it here in London.