If I have been quiet here, and let’s face it I have, there are several good reasons.Â Mostly they are do do with an impending house move and several aborted house moves.We had been intending to look into a move at some point because we live in a house with many stairs, which is not good for Jaynes hip which she injured some time ago.Â Â Somehow we never quite got around to it because there was always something else to do first.
Earlier this year somebody put a slip of paper through all the doors in our street asking if we would be interested in exchanging house with them in Three Bridges.Â We gave them a call as there was nothing to lose, and it turned out we all loved each other’s house.Â We proceeded to fill out all the necessary forms and then it all got stopped because of a technicality.
By this time we had already got used to the idea of moving so when it fell through we started looking for somewhere else.
At the same time, the new government announced its intention to make council and housing association tenancies fixed-term for new tenants at some point, making it all a bit more urgent.Â We didn’t want to find ourselves moving after then and facing another move after five years because all the kids had left home – far better to get it all sorted on the current tenancy basis, just in case.
We had a few people interested in exchanging house who then changed their minds for various reasons, and in the mean time we were still half-packed from the first prospect.Â The problem was that I had a lot of shelves up for books and DVDs and we knew that our landlords would not let us move until the shelves were down and all the resulting holes in the walls filled in.Â With well over a thousand books around the place this was quite a task.
It was getting to be a drag not having access to any of our books or DVDs, not to mention all the various files that were boxed up, and we got to the point where we decided to come off the home-swapping website and just re-settle here – but without fixing shelves to walls this time.Â Â At that time we still had someone due to visit, so we said we would at least honour that appointment, not expecting much, and if nothing came of it we would take our lives off hold.
Of course, it turned out that the people who came here really liked our house, we really liked theirs, and there shouldn’t be the technical problems we had in the first case.Â Even so, after so many false starts we were braced for disappointment again, but as each day passed it looked more likely to happen.
In fact the only problem was that we really wanted to move at the start of half-term so we would have time to settle in properly and that meant getting everything arranged very quickly.Â Both landlords pulled out all the stops and that is going to happen after all.Â Â The only practical problem was theat the other couple have a large marine fish tank, which takes a lot of moving, but they have moved a big vat of salt water and rocks here in preparation – making it very unlikely they will change their mind at the last minute.
After months of increasing stress it is all happening very suddenly and this was the last weekend to run car loads of stuff to the recycling centre, sort out clothes and dispose of furniture we are not taking – most of which has gone to the sister-in-law.Â It has been a hectic weekend, but at least it now feels like ther will be an outcome at the end of it and the uncertaintly has been falling away.
The new house is slightly smaller than this one, but it has fewer stairs.Â The only slight drawback is the location in relation to my workplace: it is about 100 metres away.Â I had been hoping for something a little closer to work and not at the top of a hill to encourage me to use the bike again, but end up so close it is not worth cycling at all.Â I shall just have to use the bike at weekends instead, and not being on top of a hill should encourage that.
Next weekend will be a bit fraught, getting all the gas, electric, phones and everything else swapped over, but it looks like we will only be without broadband for less than 24 hours if all goes to plan, which seems too good to be true.Â The unsolicited testimonials to Virgin Media will be profuse and manifold if that happens.Â I am already chuffed that, as a result of the move, we will get exactly the same services for abotu thirteen pounds a month less.
There is still a lot of stress associated with moving house but it is positive stress, if you know what I mean.Â The stress of uncertainty has been negative, paralysing stress, leaving me feeling like a rabbit in the headlinghts, seeing a pile of things to do just building up but unable to actually do them.Â I haven’t even brought myself to review any of the Amazon books I finished, let alone share my thoughts with an uninterested world about the new Labour leader and his cabinet, the recent Crawley by election results or anything else.
Maybe that will all change soon, though there is an awful lot of shelf-building to do first…