As the time approaches, I am starting to worry about the actual move.  When one is moving, one spends time thinking about the theoretical move, but anyone who has moved more than once knows that what you imagine and what actually occurs are poles apart.  First of all, every bit of organisation you have put in place is ignored completely.  The movers don’t care that you have a system, they want to get in, get it over with and get out.  Preferably in time for lunch, or at the very latest, tea.  

Last time we moved, we had a bit of an adventure.  The truck came into the driveway and knocked into the wall between our house and the neighbours’. They all piled out of the truck and stood around.  Suddenly one of them shouts “Watch out!”  A young man stepped to his left, and a huge stone ornament that had been sitting atop the partition wall fell and smashed where he had been standing.   We were lucky because if that had hit him, he would have very seriously injured, if not worse.  They were apologetic, and offered to bring someone round to clear it up immediately.  About half an hour later, a van comes to pick up the mess left by the massive stone sculpture smashed in the driveway, and while he’s reversing, he backs into a tree in the drive way and knocks it clean over.  I wasn’t outside at the time, but they were so worried about my reaction, they sent my brother J, to break the news.  So now the driveway has two trucks, several kilos of smashed stone and a felled tree lying across it.   They quickly volunteered to bring someone with a chainsaw to chop up the tree and clear up the mess. At this point I am thinking there isn’t anything else for them to knock over, except us. My brother and I didn’t stand in the middle of the drive until they left.  It seems I hired Mr Bean for the move and he showed up in all his glorious incompetence.

 Incidentally, the felled tree led to a call from me to the council to make sure that it was not protected as there were quite a few protected trees in our area (a fact we discovered every time we wanted to cut a tree back or something).  If I thought that talking to the council was difficult before, imagine how I felt after being unable to answer any of the questions she asked me.

 “What sort of tree is it?”

“Er, It’s leafy and green at the moment. Quite tall, but not enormous.”  (I stopped myself from mentioning it had a trunk and branches)

“Is it deciduous?”

” I’m not sure; it has pretty dark pink blossom on it in springtime.”

“Where is the tree located in the driveway? North, South, East, West?”

“It’s on the far left as you stand with your back to the house.” (I am not in the military for goodness’ sake.  I can’t give precise coordinates)

I think the woman just got tired of my unsatisfactory and frankly ignorant answers and said,

“Don’t worry, I don’t think the protected one has pink flowers.  You’ll be fine.”  Another satisfactory dealing with the council.  Result.

This time, although I no longer have a driveway for them to destroy, I am just as concerned that all my attempts at being a bit organised will be ridden roughshod over, and I will be left with another set of indecipherable notes made by one of the movers whose shorthand is comprehensible only to him.  

So with 10 days to go, I am now starting to think about the actual physical move.  I am nervous, not so much that I won’t be ready, but more that I won’t be able to maintain any feeling of control over the situation (all feelings of control in these situations are imaginary, but I still need them okay?)  Still, hopefully these guys will just sort out the move and not give me added worries, like knocking down my house and ensuring I never get my deposit back.  I noticed today, that on the tall wardrobe boxes they sent for our clothes, it says,

HANDLE WITH GREAT CARE

DO NOT DROP

It got me thinking.  Maybe all the boxes should say that.  I mean it’s a fairly safe bet to assume that nobody wants you to drop their stuff.  Under what circumstances would you drop a box?  Is the fact that the other boxes don’t say it an invitation to drop them?  I hope not.  I would hate to have to go around all the boxes (60+ and counting) and write ‘do not drop’ on them.  Perhaps we could add a few more instructions on them.  

DO NOT DROP.

DO NOT SHAKE.

DO NOT TURN OVER.

DO NOT SET ALIGHT.

THIS IS NOT A CHAIR.  

OR A COFFEE TABLE.

I just found it funny that these instructions were on the wardrobe boxes.  Typically these boxes are filled with clothes hanging on a bar that runs high up the box., and people tend to chuck their shoes in at the bottom.  If ever there was a box that contained unbreakable stuff, this is it.  Even if the box is dropped, the worse that can happen is that your clothes fall off the hangers.  So why would they print the BE CAREFUL instructions on those boxes? It is the equivalent of printing THIS WAY UP, DO NOT TIP WHEN FULL on all glasses. Or KEEP CLOSED WHEN IN MOTION on car doors. It should be a given.  All boxes and other stuff should be handled with care whether is says so on the box or not. 

By the way, this blog comes with implicit warnings too.  Perhaps I should be a bit clearer.

 DO NOT READ WHILE DRIVING OR OPERATING HEAVY MACHINERY.

DO NOT READ WHILE PERFORMING SURGERY.

DO NOT JUDGE ME FOR MY CLUTTER.

DO NOT READ IF YOU DIDN’T ALREADY KNOW THE ABOVE.

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