The female species. Seemingly completely incapable of packing sensibly and more importantly, packing in accordance with available space and duration of the trip. Without fail, with every packing opportunity, my dear wife will haul out the biggest bag available and stuff it to the seams, pausing only to inquire whether or not I still have space in my bag for say her hairdryer.
Or twenty million towels.
Either way, getting the car ready for the trip involves quite a lot of inventive reshuffling and an exercise in packing logistics.
I’m beginning to think that the airports have got this one right by restricting the amount of stuff you can throw aboard! :)
Saturday morning I was up bright and early, immediately getting to work on stripping my flat down even more, making it look more and more like I am in fact squatting and not living there at the moment. Being on the seventh floor of a block of flats has the nice advantage of a beautiful view, but it pretty much ends there I am afraid. It is such a bugger to move things between the flat and the ground floor and I am positive that I spent as much time waiting for the lift as I did actually packing my boxes full of stuff :(
It didn’t help that the wind was blowing gale force either – I am kind of surprised that none of my plants were actually uprooted in the moving them downstairs process because the way the wind was ripping at their leaves certainly indicated that they were holding on for dear life! My first and only really minor disaster also occurred when during disassembly of my figurines, the not all that greatly balanced Skifel managed to tear the connecting spike from the base off when I tried to pull the two apart for easier packing. *sigh*, looks like it is time for good old super glue again. Actually, come to think of it, that was the first thing that really went wrong during this whole now month-long process – other than Skifel I haven’t had any other breakages whatsoever! Quick, touch wood!
It pretty much took the whole morning to load up the car, and by load up I mean pack to the brim – even the back seat was covered in bedside table and chair! We had originally organized with Chantelle’s dad and brother to come through to the flat on Saturday afternoon to check out a couple of things and bring through some stuff on the bakkie, but with Robert dropping us for the naval festival that was on go (and when I say drop I mean that Chantelle never actually asked him in the first place if he was going to help us out) we cancelled that plan and thereby gave myself a little more time to get through to Gordon’s Bay without leaving too much stuff behind.
First things first though, I still needed to mosey on down to Spar to buy the meat and drink for Sunday afternoon’s braai with Dean and company, so I duly took a nice walk down and purchased all my ‘necessary’ consumables (translated means beer and meat. After all, what else does a real man need around a fire?) :)
That done, it was off to drop off some stuff at Ryan’s place before hitting the road for my date with destiny – cleaning out Chantelle’s flat. Seeing as my liefie was working, I first headed over to the guesthouse to pick up the keys from her and then set about cleaning up the flat. Now Chantelle has been gracious enough to allow me my very own ‘man room’ in the flat, a space that will function as my office and retreat, as well as the only place where I get any decorative say whatsoever. However, seeing as I have not moved my desk or table over yet, it pretty much acts as the repository for all the stuff we’re bringing into the flat for the moment. So you can read it as being a great big mess.
Of course, the first thing I did manage to do while unpacking the car and moving my ton of boxes and other miscellaneous items to the ‘man room’ was to hear a screw hit the ground as I pulled my speaker stands out from the car. Great stuff. So there I was for about 15 minutes squatting on the ground looking for this missing screw. Giving up in disgust, I raided the fridge as consolation and on returning to my ‘man room’ made the grand discovery of finding the ‘missing’ screw wedged in the speaker stand pipe! Yeah, the less said about that one the better…
The problem with us taking over Andrea’s flat is that Andrea herself isn’t quite moved out yet. So what Chantelle and I have done is basically take out all her stuff (i.e. the stuff we don’t want to swipe from her) and move it to the patio space, while at the same time moving all of our crap into the now vacant area. The end result is a ‘man room’ with all my stuff lying around, a fairly sorted bathroom, a sorted out bedroom (sans main light though thanks to a leaky ceiling which apparently is a huge fight with the body corporate at the moment), a neutral lounge and a packed with Andrea’s stuff patio. Which only left the kitchen for my Saturday activities – probably the room with the most work to be done in to tell the truth!
Nevertheless, I rolled up my sleeves and got stuck in, removing Andrea’s stuff, wrapping it in newspaper and piling it into boxes. At the same time, I began removing some of our stuff from their wrapping confines and pushing them into now marginally cleaner cupboards. Thankfully the kitchen has ample packing space, because by the looks of things between Chantelle and myself we have enough kitchen stuff to feed an army!
A rather tired Chantelle eventually arrived home after a long day of work, all ready for bed, but I managed to keep her awake with a delicious fish and chips supper from the nearby Ooskus fisheries and before she could settle down again, I convinced her to roll up her sleeves and get stuck in as well. Luckily she does not like the idea of me working unattended outside of the ‘man room’, meaning that she was motivated enough to work and by late Saturday evening we were able to call it a night after getting a substantial amount of work done and resulting in a flat that is steadily beginning to take on shape as OUR space. Apart from the torn paintwork where I ripped out the existing sound system cables of course.
But goodness gracious me, it really is amazing just how much of a hoarder Andrea turned out to be! :)