After all the anticipation and planning the day finally arrived.  Today the movers came to take almost everything we own to storage.  At 8:30, a big truck with 5 containers in drove right past the house.  10 minutes later, the familiar and annoying sound of a truck in reverse signalled the re-arrival of the truck.  He had to reverse almost all the way up the road.  So, a good start then.

Five guys came in and I started the tour of the house.  I had tried to leave notes on all the bedroom doors with what was to go where.  D had labelled all of her furniture and boxes.  Still though I caught one of the guys trying to put her stuff into storage more than once, and realised that we had made the fatal error of assuming that the movers could a) read, and b) pay attention to the information offered to them.  So I hovered and generally annoyed them.  Every so often one of them would come in and mumble something like we need small boxes.  I would point out that there were plenty of small boxes upstairs.  They weren’t the right type of boxes.  Then they needed soft stuff.  Or chairs, but not chairs shaped like the ones we have.  Our chairs are too curvy apparently.  First me, now the chairs, seriously there’s a trend developing here.

By midday, all the containers on the truck were full and there was still the same amount left.  One of the guys went to take the truck back and get another one.  Two more containers ought to do it he said.  Er I don’t think so I thought.  He left the other men here and drove off.  They busied themselves bringing everything from upstairs to the front room so they could load the stuff onto the second van when it came.  They had all brought packed lunches, so all I provided was 25 cups of tea, 1 kg of sugar, and a selection box of biscuits.

At this point I should mention that movers do not feel human sentiments like normal people.  It was 2 degrees centigrade yesterday, and they were all in cotton shirts laughing and whistling as if it was 32 degrees.  I know they are working hard and sweating, but for the rest of us mere mortals, 2 degrees is bloody arctic, and the fact that my front door was open all day just made me want to cry.  My lips chapped, my hands went numb, my nose dripped; and that was by lunchtime.  By the time they left (4:30) I was wearing a foil blanket and huddling up to a St Bernard.

I have to say, the men being cheerful makes for a pleasant change. My experience so far with movers is that they are grumpy, unfriendly and disinterested. Who can forget the ‘that’s extra’ guy?  These guys however were practically sunny.  And I appreciated it.  Because these guys work hard (for minimum wage I was told today), and when I say they work hard I mean they really do work hard.  They loaded the 90 numbered boxes, and the other 50 unnumbered ones.  Plus most of the furniture, and junk from the basement.  In all ten containers full.  Which kind of has a nice symmetry to it as we already have ten containers in storage, and so they can all keep each other company.  How sweet.

As they were running up and down the stairs and in and out of rooms shouting out to me is this for store?  etc etc, I was filling boxes with stuff that we were going to take with us the next day:  Moving Day Two, when we were going to split the rest of the stuff in the house between my aunt’s house, my sister’s house and the flat.

Sidebar: One day, my friend X came over to do some work on a project.  I looked around the house for about 15 minutes for a ruler and couldn’t find one.  Eventually, I used a book to make the lines, and moved on.  Today, I realised the reason for this.  Every single piece of furniture we moved had a ruler behind or under it.  I now have 17 rulers, all shatterproof, of varying lengths.  I am thinking of opening a stationery shop.

In the evening, after I had spent 20 minutes picking up crisp packets, cans and foil from every surface in the house, (gotta love packed lunches), D, R and I sat on the two remaining (uncomfortable) chairs and one beanbag in the house, and ate Chinese takeaway bemoaning the fact that we lived practically next door to one of the best Chinese restaurants in London, and now we were moving too far away for them to deliver.  As I cast my eye over the house, I made mental notes of  what needed to go where, and stressed about how much of the garbage the bin men would actually take the next day.  Again, off to bed early. Only my bed was now in storage so I got the mattress with the spring sticking out of it on the floor.  Aside from the thrill of possibly waking up with lockjaw, I also had to lower myself into bed gently and hope that I didn’t need to get up for anything urgently during the night, because getting up from that height is hard enough without factoring in the stiffness in my joints that occurs during prolonged periods of inactivity.

Oh well.  Tomorrow is another day…

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