Pastures new’ish…

posted in: Family | 0

This post has been a wee while in the making, but I do have my reasons. Christmas for one, a lack of a decent Internet connection didn’t help and a much needed New Year’s jaunt to France added to the delay. But the main reason, by far, was waiting for the memory of our house-move No.1 to feel a little less painful. Twenty three days later and I think I’m about ready to revisit Monday 20th December… To cut to the chase, we’d sold our house (rather unexpectedly) last October and after a frantic search we’d found somewhere new to live. I think we had our offer accepted on our new house about three weeks before our sale completed. It was all a bit touch & go and we decided, rashly or not, that to speed things along we’d move into rented accommodation if our new house wasn’t vacant by the time our sale completed. It had taken us almost a year to sell the house (it was the only offer we’d had!!!) and we didn’t want to risk losing the sale. We’d simply sell our house, move into rented for a few months and then move into our new house when it was vacant. All very simple really. The first problem we hit was not knowing exactly when our sale would go through. It was December and we had no idea where we’d be over Xmas. We then looked into renting and hit our next problem; the minimum renting agreement is 6 months and we probably only needed to rent for 2 or 3 😯 A lot of the places available were furnished, which left us with a storage headache and then we had the dog… As lovely as he is, most landlords simply didn’t want to know πŸ™ We were now into the 2nd week of Dec and we were practically calling our solicitors on a daily basis to see whether our move would be before or after Xmas. We had stuff to sort out & we needed to know. The solicitors didn’t, so we carried on with our half-hearted packing, pretty confident that we’d have one last Xmas in our house. On the Friday we got a call… ‘Hi, your buyers would like to know if you could complete on the 15th Dec?’ In the end we stalled them until the 20th, which gave us about 10 days to find somewhere to live 😯 As is often the case it’s not what, it’s who you know and after lots of head scratching & nail biting we were offered a house to rent by an ex work colleague. We wouldn’t be tied to any contract, it was unfurnished & they kinda didn’t mind the dog. The only slight concern was that the house apparently wasn’t quite ready yet. The builders were in and apparently it should be finished a few days before the 20th 😯 The week before our move and our packing intensified, still unsure whether our rented house would be ready or not!!! As the weekend approached we booked our van for the Monday & invited friends round for a farewell/last supper at our happy home. On the Saturday, only two days before our move, we got the all clear on our rented house. To say this was a huge relief would be a massive understatement and our farewell/last supper was a slightly boozier night as a result!!! The following day we actually managed to move some of our stuff into the rented house. This would hopefully make life a lot easier on the move day. In hindsight we probably should’ve started to move stuff out weeks before!!! Monday 20th and we were up early. It was dark and our bed was still warm as it got dismantled. The ‘new’ people were moving into our house today and we were hoping to be out as quick as possible. With Sawyer posted to nursery for the day we raced across Derby to collect our van at 9:00. Enterprise was the company we’d chosen. They’re a pretty reputable firm and I give them a link here for a reason. A reason that will become blatantly apparent. ‘Hi we’ve come to collect our van…’ The guy at the desk looked through our paperwork. ‘Did anyone contact you at the weekend?’ ‘I had a confirmation email.’ ‘You should’ve had a phone-call.’ ‘Our phone’s been disconnected. We’re moving house.’ ‘Oh… I’m afraid we haven’t got your van.’ ‘WHAT???’ ‘Someone should’ve called to tell you. We’ve got a smaller van if you want?’ ‘WE’RE MOVING HOUSE TODAY, WE’LL TAKE WHATEVER YOU HAVE!!!’ ‘Ok… I’ll just get someone to fetch it for you.’ We then spent the next half an hour angrily pacing across the office and demanding to know where the hell our bloody van was. ‘Oh it’s not too far away… I’ll just give them a call… It shouldn’t be too long now… They’re trying to find the keys…’ came the replies. ‘WE’RE MOVING HOUSE TODAY. WE NEED A VAN!!!’ ‘I’ll just give them another call… Ok, it may be about 15 more minutes…’ We were out of the office before the drippy guy had even finished his sentence. I’d move stuff in the back of our car rather than give this piss poor company any money 😑 Our rebellious stomp from the offices of Enterprise felt good, but the reality was, our car is tiny. We needed a van and it was already 10:00AM. In the end we picked up a van from the same little backstreet firm (Atwal Car & Van Hire) that we’d used when we last moved 10 years ago. If only we’d gone there first!!! With over an hour and a half wasted, we didn’t begin to move stuff out of our house until well after 10:30 and we soon realised what a mammoth job we had. Our transit was a fairly big one, but it was soon full. Thankfully we weren’t moving far, but it was looking like a lot of journeys lay ahead. What followed was easily the most stressful day either of us had had. With the help of a few family, friends and even friends of friends we’d never met before, we continued to load & unload our overworked little van. Another half an hour was wasted trying to manhandle a sofa past our front-door, until I remembered how to take the door off!!! And God only knows how long people took dismantling our rather complicated & large dining-room table!!! By 1:00PM we started to get calls from our Estate Agents wanting to know when the new people could move in. We were nowhere near finished and guessed at maybe another 2 hours. At 3:00PM we were still nowhere near finished, but said we wouldn’t be long. At 4:00PM the new people arrived in their van. We still hadn’t finished, but said they could start to move in anyway… Our packing had initially been very organised. Corresponding items had been packed together and the boxes had all been clearly labeled. At some point on Monday 20th December that very regimented way of packing went completely out of the window!!! Our once very informative labels now simply read ‘Random shit’ and as the day wore on we were lucky if we even got a label!!! Our helpers were doing a sterling job and there’s no way we’d have managed to get out without them, but it was now time to just throw stuff into our van (quite literally). The new people had arrived and we needed to get out; simple. By 5:30PM we were out, kind of… We’d not even started to empty our garden & we’d left a fair bit of stuff in our loft, but the new folk had kindly agreed to let us come back the next day to shift that (it took me over 2 hours to clear the garden & we still have stuff in the loft!!!). So in short it took us almost 10 hours to move out of our lovely house and that’s not even counting the time we spent the day before or the day after 😯 Yes we do have rather too much stuff and yes we will most definitely be de-junking before we have to move again some time soon…