Tuesday, 29 January 2013
A Moving Affair
So, moving house. Most people do it after careful planning; drawing up lists, touring estate agents, checking out facilities and all that. In my case, no need, I’d done all that some seven years ago when I bought what was intended to be a staging post house, while I looked for a ‘proper’ one to actually live in. I bought a nice cheap two-bedroomed affair, boxed up and stored a load of stuff and moved in, fully intending to buy again within the year, then do up the first and rent it out.
But life’s not like that, is it? After a stint away, where I had to rent because you may have noticed the difficulty in getting a mortgage since 2008, I've moved back in. With everything. It’s a bleeding nightmare. Because my tenants were, it transpires, useless morons, they let the back fence and gate fall into disrepair, so I've had to temporarily barricade it up. And because of the same cluelessness they managed to bust the lock on my large lock-up shed, so I've had to break in, then replace the lock, but as the door is damaged (their doing, not mine) it’s not as secure as it used to be. Oh, it’s also full of their trash, of course, which I can’t easily get rid of now… because I had to barricade up the back gate.
So, my enormous stash of tools is in the only obvious place left – piled up in the kitchen. And as I've moved from a three-bed back into a two-bed and in an effort to keep down costs I haven’t rented storage, I now live surrounded by boxes. Boxes of books, boxes of tools, boxes of man-toys and it wouldn't surprise me to discover boxes of boxes. Upstairs, the big bedroom is my new office. Naturally, in order to make space to assemble a necessarily large bookcase in there I had to move all the boxes of books out to the other bedroom, which is almost entirely filled by my bed.
Then I needed some tools some of which, as it happens, I’d left down in Birmingham for the final dismantling of the remaining stuff this week. But I knew where my set of Allen keys was. It was in the kitchen… in a toolbox underneath all the other toolboxes, the tottering pile of which I dismantled to find them. Bookshelf done, boxes unpacked, I then cleared some more boxes from the living room, re-cluttering the temporarily cleared office floor, but at least I’d now made enough space in the living room for my recliner armchair to actually recline once more.
Hmm, what next? I had a brainwave. I’ll mount the bedroom telly on the bedroom wall and pop the digital aerial in the loft to feed it. That's two more things not on the floor. Yay, go me! I’ll need a ladder. Oh yes, behind the pile of tools in the kitchen. My drill was just handy but, calamity, no drill bits (obviously they’re in Birmingham) but just maybe… After twenty minutes of rooting through bloody toolboxes and with no joy I’m suddenly inspired. Of course! I may have a bit in another drill box – I have many drills – and they are just handily here, in the kitchen… underneath all those other boxes.
Ladder, drill, drill bit, up in the loft I go. Ah, now I could use a torch. Where’s the torch [pantomime chorus] “It’s in the kitchen!” [louder] “Underneath the toolboxes!” Oh, how I chuckled under my breath.
So, we’re getting there. I have all basic amenities to hand. In each room I can just about do the thing that room is designed for and bit by bit, as I move stuff around, I get to collapse another box and make a just little bit more space. And now that I've made that space I’m off back to Brum today to clean down the house I’m leaving and bring back another van load of shit to clutter up my world.
Now, where did I put that Radio Times?
I feel a little like Mr Trebus, but I’m getting there. It’s been a moving experience.