01 March 2018
Posts have been a bit scarce lately because - I don't even want to know how many times I've posted this in the fourteen years since I started blogging - I've been moving house. Again. What can I tell you. Luckily, with so many moves under my belt, I've got the whole thing down to a fine art: starting two weeks ahead of moving day, I pack one beautifully organised box full of books, clearly label it "BOOKS", stick it in the corner of my lounge room and do nothing else until the day before the move.  

I hoped that maybe this time, though, things could be different. Looking online for boxes, a major retailer's website promises me that I can  "Take the stress out of moving with Officeworks handy moving guide". Excellent; who doesn't need to destress when they're moving house. So I read the guide, which seems mostly to consist of suggestions to purchase Officeworks products. However, they are a big smart corporation and I am just a people, maybe they know something I don't; and anyway the fact I'm moving all the fucking time clearly indicates I'm in no way qualified to make decisions regarding my own life. Anyway, I head to Officeworks.
Officeworks has gone down the Walmart path of having a greeter at the front of the store, which is kinda weird. I mean, it's okay if you're walking in with a spring in your step, and can respond to their "Hi, how are you today?" with a cheery "I'm excellent! Thank you. I'm so looking forward to purchasing binder files.". But if you're like every other person who's ever gone to Officeworks and you're just trying to get the materials for the class project on food groups then get out as fast as you can because it's late and your child only told you at bed time the thing is due tomorrow morning and you know you'll be up until 1am doing the damn assignment for them even though half of you wants to strangle the little shit darling child, well, the perky welcome seems only to poke fun at your gloom. 

In between all the packing, you've got to find removalists, unless you've got friends willing to help you move, and I don't. Pretty much every removalist firm also promises to take the stress out of moving. Look, if everyone could just get together and designate one of you to stress out of moving, because it's not happening at the moment with everyone fighting over the job.

Moving day arrives, much too soon. Removalists have ridiculous start times. I'm not at my best in the morning, partly cause of medication I'm on and partly cause I'm a lazy bludging lefty that's everything that's wrong with this country. Can we kick off around ten, I ask when I make the booking. No can do; the morning slots are 6am (6am!) and 8 am. I pick the latter. At any time of day, it's not great having strangers in my house, touching my things. I know that these are technically my employees, and I shouldn't feel guilty for needing to sit down in front of them and not lifting boxes myself - that's a big reason why I needed to hire movers in the first place. Nevertheless, it feels weird sitting down in front of guys lugging my stuff, and I make sure to sit on a hard surface on an angle of at least 20 degrees to the perpendicular, whilst adopting the facial expression I normally assume on thinking about Sydney property developers, to let them know that whilst I am reclining, I am not taking any enjoyment from the experience and am not just sitting around like a pampered princess whilst others work for me.

Not that the removalists didn't hesitate to let me know their feeling that I was Marie Antoinetting the move. My new flat is up several flight of stairs, which was explained when making the booking, but I was still treated to a litany of complaints about every last one of them, as well as the company they move for, the heat, and that Donald Trump is just trying to do his best. (I can't help but feel they'd find the stairs easier to manage if they'd given up on the chain smoking, which they did, lavishly and with gusto, whilst handling my soft furnishings). They even complained to me, on their seventh or eighth trip down to the truck for more cartons, that I have too many books, and I'd have flung them off the balcony if there weren't a bunch more cartons to go. Saturate my nearly new pillow top mattress with disgusting Marlboro smoke? I'll smile politely and let it go. Disparage my books? You are not getting a tip.  

Finally, my stuff was in my new house, the movers left, and I had the opportunity to really take stock and organise my possessions in a way to bring me comfort and happiness and help me live my best life, so of course I set up the TV, got put the kettle, and shoved everything else in a corner where it can stay for the next several months.

There was a minor issue with my power supply, and I had to ring the power company. On the third ring, without my pressing anything, the IVR said "please hold while your call is being transferred". Corporations are getting in early with transferring calls these days; they do it pre-emptively to everyone.  When I was transferred through to the right department, the hold voice said "Moving house is stressful. And while we can't carry the boxes for you, we can at least ensure the power is on the day you move in." Finally some honesty, not another corporate entity promising all but to assemble your bed then give you the best sex of your life on top of it. Now that would be moving.


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