The Journey (retrospect Feb 2014)

So in December Belinda and I walked through our house again and again looking at all of our ‘stuff’. Should we take it or should we leave it. If we don’t take it when do we get rid of it?

We settled on what was really a small amount of items to bring and the rest we sold online, through garage sales, via friends etc. At times it was frantic but ultimately it was a great experience to purge lots of ‘stuff’ that we had accumulated and start fresh. 

The last 6-8 weeks that we spent in our house in Sydney was with very little furnishings. Just the basics. The basics in a 4 bedroom house made it a bit empty but while it had our belongings and our photo’s on the wall it felt like home. When it was empty it was just a house. It was our house but we had to find a home now. 

It is all a bit of a blur but we did an awful lot in a very short space of time. Sold our cars (ironically both on the same day), sold our bikes. Finished all the renovation pieces around the house so that tenants could move in.  We found tenants to move into our house in the time frame we wanted. 

We said goodbye to all our friends and family. We had our house contents packed and the rest was stored. After house hopping a little before we left we jumped on a plane with 150kgs of luggage. With condensed timeline like this it seems easy. To be honest it was easier than I had thought, but it wasn’t without huge amounts of stress. 

See you later, Nth Narrabeen

We’ll miss you, you crazy kids

Good bye to our dear friend

We also felt displacement as we slowly moved out of our house and then to a caravan park, and then to our mate Rich’s place up the coast, then back to my parents place and then to the airport. Adding to this stress was that fact that while we had a place to stay when we arrived in NL – it was only for 10 days and in this time we had to find a suitable house to rent or risk living in a hotel for an extended period.

 Nice place to ‘house hop’

It all worked well in the end but there were peaks and troughs. For instance we seemed to be on the down hill slope as we headed to the airport to leave. We were well overdue to be on a plane and leaving Sydney as we had been living out of bags for almost 2 weeks. As we got close to the airport our agent managing for our Sydney property calls to say that our tenants are unhappy with a number of items and could I read his email and call him back before I got on the plane. *Cue doom and gloom music*

We then get to the airport and frantically try and meet my family who have transported our tonne of luggage. We carefully check every item in with the check in staff who seems impressed that all our bags are under weight and that this 150kg was our entire life. As we get to the end of our bags we hit the baby items – pram, cot, car seat ,which we were lead to believe did not contribute to our overall limit. 90 minutes later and many discussions as to who would pay the $1000 over limit fee we finally head through immigration to use up at least 60 minutes of the airline lounge facility.

It was frantic for a couple of hours but then by the time we get on the plane calm hits and we move to the next challenge. This is how we have lived for 2 months as we prep our move and make it all happen. Stress then calm. Stress then calm.

The only 10 minutes of sleep I got! Glad it was documented.
30 hours of travel including a very long layover in Dubai and things start hit a new stress point. Our beautifully natured and happy Anneke was a nightmare on the last leg of our flight. She didn’t sleep and the more she didn’t sleep the more unsettled she became. When we finally hit the cool air within Schipol airport she crashes. Completely lifeless in Belinda’s arms. We now have to get 150kgs of luggage, carry a child who has gone into a sleep so heavy she almost comatose, then find a pre booked van to take us to a house that was paid for but from an individual I have never spoken to on the phone.

Again calm hits and we move to our next challenge. We get our entire luggage on two trolleys, kid goes in the pram and between Belinda and I we roll it all to our waiting driver who loads it all up. He takes us to the front door of our temporary house and the man meets us with a key and all is well.

From here it is just jetlag, looking at houses, getting a residency permit and moving into a house when we find one. Easy!

I do speak for myself here and I am sure Belinda may argue that there wasn’t any calm. But in the end the moments (albeit brief) where we did have calm, we were able to focus and keep going together. I am pretty lucky my family has stuck tight and that Belinda agreed to take on this huge challenge with me. Belinda is probably the only person on earth that could help to make a move like this successful. My partner and an awesome mum. She helped me keep together and I am grateful that she took the challenge with me. 

She loves me

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