End of a chapter – part 1

Leaving t-shirtThe problem with attempting to blog about something like moving country is that both activities compete for time, and the former always outranks the latter.
So, we’ve now moved out of our flat, have shipped (most of) our stuff, said goodbye, landed in the U.S. and I haven’t written a single word about it.

So these are retrospective entries, but hopefully fresh enough in my memory to be accurate.

Moving house can be very upsetting. It’s a big upsetment. People get upset!
Bamber – The Chain

I won’t bore you with the details of the move as it’s all very predictable and tedious. But, we have learned some very valuable lessons which may be useful to someone:

  • We used Pickfords, and they were brilliant. Highly recommended for transatlantic moves…
  • That opinion may change when we get our stuff back of course.
  • The golden rule of moving house: The less stuff you are left with, the harder it is and the longer it takes to deal with. Consequently the “last little bits and bobs” take twice as long to deal with as getting the big stuff done.
  • Leave at least a week after the removals to clean/tidy up,get ready to fly and say goodbye to everyone. We left two days and it nearly killed us.
  • Deciding on what stuff to take on the plane for your initial time in the country is very simple: pack suitcases as if you were preparing to go on holiday for two weeks. Ship everything else! We, of course, didn’t do this and instead had an indescribably bad time for the last few days as we tried to squeeze everything into one suitcase each.
  • Despite what it says on any documentation from BA or BAA, or what it says on any automated message system, you are allowed to take two suitcases and one piece of hand-luggage with you when you fly to the USA. That little nugget of information, combined with the knowledge of the maximum weight of each bag (32Kg) would have saved us hundreds of pounds in excess baggage. thanks BA.
  • All airlines suck. BA, nowadays in particular, may get stuffed.

Because we didn’t know about these rules, we had four days of exhausting misery in which we also had to try and find time for emotional goodbyes and wistful reminiscences. Luckily we have some really good friends who organized an absolutely amazing leaving-do. There are plenty of photos that describe the event more accurately than I could ever do. Thanks so much to everyone that came, especially those that came a long way and those that I’ve been a really bad friend to with poor correspondence. Things will change now I promise.
To commemorate the event, Dan produced a truly brilliant t-shirt that everyone was invited to sign. In accordance with the ancient traditions of the craft, many people scrawled a cock-and-balls on it as well. Thanks everyone. It’s a very moving tribute.

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