Moving Day; or, Mayday, Mayday

Moving Day; or, Mayday, Mayday

When my ex-husband-to-be offered that he would help me move house so that I save money on a moving company, I first thought it was a commendable act of kindness, however belated. I should have known better. More than anything, my dear and loving husband turned out to be plotting a cruel and unusual revenge, deliberately or otherwise. After changing the date of the D-Day (Departure Day) twice, he finally settled on the following brilliant plan:

  • It will be done on a Friday. That’s excellent in that Fridays are notorious for their low traffic and absence of people everywhere because nobody travels for holiday or does shopping for the weekend.
  • He will go to work for a few hours and I’ll go with him and wait until he’s done. That’s sweet in that his work team will surely love to meet for coffee and chat their boss’s wife-to-be-divorced.
  • We’ll go to Ikea, get my chosen furniture and load it in the van. That’s logical in that I’m a heavy-weight weight-lifting champion who has obviously no trouble even to lift and hold her nine-pound cat for a cuddle.
  • We’ll return to our old house, load boxes and drive to my new home. That’s exciting in that we can exchange funny stories from our recently ended twelve-year relationship while we’re stuck in the traffic jam.
  • We’ll unload the van, on which my brother-in-law will join to help. He can’t help with loading/unloading the furniture and the boxes because it’s the day he is spending quality time with his five-year-old in KFC.

I wasn’t consulted regarding the action plan. It was assumed that I agree by default. So I agreed, although I did mention politely that the plan could use some fine-tuning. Actually, I threatened divorce, but the husband helpfully pointed out that I couldn’t double divorce him. Well, if I could, I would.

Post-checkout in Ikea
Post-checkout in Ikea

The D-Day started in the middle of a dark, cold and windy night, at 5:55 a.m. Because getting up at six straight is boring. I had spent the previous day and much of the night packing, as only losers pack in sufficient advance. My vital functions that morning were hence somewhat limited, to say the least. My autopilot programme walked me through the morning routine up to getting in the car, where I promptly dozed off.

I woke up with a start when the car pulled up to a dilapidated building off the motorway. I was wondering if my undear and unloving husband took all the trouble to sell me into slavery or slay me and leave my dead body in a ditch. I was just opening my mouth to suggest I’d prefer to be killed because I’m too exhausted for anything else, when the husband said that this was a stationery warehouse and that he was going to get some printing paper. Great.

He (unhelpfully): Do you want something?
She (meekly): I’d just like to move house.
He (ignoring the previous): So wait here.

The next stop, at the man’s workplace, wasn’t awkward at all, as nobody was staring at me curiously and everybody was eager to gossip about the meanness of the husband/boss, who certainly wasn’t behind everyone’s back at one and the same time. Picture this. It’s fun to imagine, though sadly, I don’t remember it because I came to some sort of consciousness only after having been served a third coffee, which coincided with the boss’s orders to move. Move I did, as I very much wanted to move.

Assembling horror, horror
Assembling horror, horror

The next thing I knew I woke up in Ikea, and my ex-to-be was yelling at me to get the bloody shopping list and move my decreasingly hot ass because this was no pleasure trip. It indeed wasn’t. On the ex’s defence, he might or might have not tried not yelling at me at first, but I wouldn’t have responded as I was walking dead. I was navigating the aisles, much to my companion’s dismay, and advising him to load the trolley with bookcases, tables and chairs. He looked disgusted, though I wouldn’t know, as I don’t really know him.

Inevitably, one trolley was not enough, and I was dispatched to get one of my own. A fun fact: a person is capable of developing incredible strength under pressure. It doesn’t look graceful, unless you’re Hemingway, but it works. More or less. So I was pushing, pulling and sliding the trolley all about Ikea’s self-serve warehouse, having it filled with a flat-packed bed, a chest of drawers, a bedside table, a shoe rack, a mirror cabinet and more, a danger to myself and everyone around, but moving.

The cashier rang my purchases up unceremoniously, as though I spend a three months’ worth of my wages on the regular. I was terrified that my credit card would be rejected because I never exposed it to such degree of exploitation before. But I got away with it, and a three-foot-long receipt. Now let’s reload the trolleys in the van, drive back to the house, feed the van boxes with my possessions and off to move it all in my new home. As simple as that. Except.

Except it became clear that the van was too small to accommodate all the furniture and all the boxes. The move would have to be split in two days. I was screaming internally. Until I thought better of it and decided to conserve any energy I had left for the actual move, which hadn’t even started yet properly. It was about five p.m. that we made it to my destination. It took an hour to move the contents of the van in the flat, floor six – but a lift all aright. Beam me up, Scotty.

Quoth she, nevermore
Quoth she, nevermore

My brother-in-law-soon-not-to-be arrived and furniture assembling commenced. I can’t deny the two brothers’ goodwill and effort, yet in my dazed eyes clouded by utter exhaustion, they looked like Laurel and Hardy failing hard. While the men were abusing Ikea, Swedes and the whole world by extension, I was abusing myself for not having had sense enough to pay professionals for the job who would actually be capable of doing it. I hated myself and the two not-DIY-guys, which I proceeded to share with the world.

Husband (threatening): You’re kidding. You aren’t texting now.
Wife (thinking): Not really, I’m snapping pics of you two guys and WhatsApping them to sympathetic friends with snarky comments. (Saying): No, I’m just looking at the phone.
Husband (outraged): Seriously? Don’t you think you should help us?
Wife (thinking): By acting as a dumb waiter and holding your screws, for instance? (Saying): What do you need help with?
Husband (pauses, hesitates, yells): Take the rubbish to the bin already!

Complying, I assumed the form of Sisyphus and started to shift armfuls of cardboard and plastic to the recycle bins, skidding on the icy path and stumbling like a drunk as sleet was blowing against my glasses. Ikea uses mountains of packaging material, in case you wonder. Returning from my umpteenth dustwoman’s trip, I came to Laurel and Hardy packing their tools away though they haven’t finished assembling yet. It was decided that the rest would be done by my husband Hardy alone the following day.

As I thanked the men and compensated them for their trouble, my brother-in-law Laurel causally mentioned that I was expected on his birthday party the next day. I began to say that my mind understandably wasn’t on family celebrations whilst in the middle of a move, however, I was effectively silenced by the brother I married, who coldly observed that this was the least I could do. Why on earth would a family whom I’m divorcing want me at their gathering? I don’t get you, people. Just let me move, please.

43 thoughts on “Moving Day; or, Mayday, Mayday

    1. Thank you a lot for commiserating with me! I’m sure my experience, though not entirely smooth, wasn’t of the worst – and at least, it provided ample blogging material 😀 Well, there indeed is no one of my own family to help, I have a very small family and our relationships are complex… Anyway, now I’m all moved and settled and enjoying my new home and life…

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  1. I spent half a day watching and observing my cat after her 5 hour long flight to make sure she was fine. Spent half a day moving 15 tee carton boxes up 8 floors with a slow moving lift by myself. I spent a half day assembling all my ikea furniture by myself. But all of that pales in comparison to what you endured!

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    1. Oh, a five-hour flight? Poor you and poor cat! Did she travel in the cabin or in the luggage area? And you did all your moving by yourself?? Wow! I assessed my strength and skills critically before the move and concluded that I would never be able to do it completely on my own. If only because things like the fridge and the washing machine are simply too heavy for one female person to move… I applaud to and admire your independence.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. travelled in the luggage area! Including transport time would be around 9 hours in total for her. Plus she was only allowed one small cup of water which wasn’t refilled. so hell-a worried!

        Haha, all of that didn’t happen one after another though, spread over a period. So I may have exaggerated it a bit. lol.

        The movement of the boxes was not planned for at all. Toll, if I remember correctly were the movers. They had wrapped all 15 boxes into a nice big 3×3 m burger. It wouldn’t fit through the hallway nor the lift. They insisted they weren’t paid to bring it into my apartment, so I was left there alone with my awesome burger wrap. No amount of planning would have saved me there with my limited knowledge at that time 😐

        hahaha, yeah those 2 are the killer ones..! Irrespective, a day or two of inconvenience for a greater good 😉

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        1. Wow! Thank you for telling me more about your move!! I loved to hear your story. Planned or not planned, it was clearly an ordeal. Both for you and for poor Shelley. Glad that you both survived, hopefully without a major trauma, and lived to blog about it 😉

          Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. I’m sure the husband’s slant of view would be different than mine, but even so, if this is the way I feel about him, it’s clear that I had to go.

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  2. That sounds awful and yet totally hilarious. Glad you made it through and could recognize it as being funny enough to write this post about rather than just the horror of it all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your lovely feedback! That’s precisely what I wanted, to turn a miserable experience into a hilarious blog post 😀 I’m glad if this intention worked out! I actually welcome adverse experience because then I can blog about it 😉

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I don’t know if I would go so far as to welcome adversity, but I’m glad you know how to turn the situation into something more positive, or at least humorous.

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  3. Even though I never lie, doesn’t mean I should always feel the need to tell the truth. But, I can’t help but be honest and tell you this made me laugh. lol
    Of course I realize this is a significant life altering experience with plenty of emotions along with it.
    But, I liked the way you were ranting about this leaving most of that aside. I was laughing because of a few things I could relate to from my own personal experiences. Specifically, IKEA lol
    http://mindmasterjedi.com/2014/10/07/assembly-required-rant/

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    1. Thank you, I’m glad that the post came across as funny rather than depressive, as this was the intention! And, of course, the horror of IKEA! I’ve seen and liked your IKEA post before 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Good to know you are in what I call the “sensitivity safety club” This refers to people that aren’t overly sensitive, always serious, and easily offended by things that they shouldn’t be.
        Again, thank you for letting me know you are open to not always taking everything so seriously.

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          1. Thanks 😉
            Since you mentioned how boring it would be for you to take yourself seriously, I’ll make sure to avoid taking you seriously as well so I am not subjected to that level of bordem lol 😉

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  4. That does sound incredibly awkward and hellish to be honest, sheesh but you came through it, you have your modern simplistic yet chique furniture all up and running and toasty toes on heated flooring. You are enjoying it there right? big hugs x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, it was both awkward and hellish, but it was fun too! I’m very much enjoying my new home, though the furniture was poorly assembled and already required some re-assembling and fixing! Fortunately now I know where I can get help 😉

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      1. oh dear and my neighbour just came back with some ikea and i told her how yours fell apart after assembling, probably wasn’t the best thing to do and i was laughing too, not good of me!

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        1. That was not very advisable of you! It’s not quite right that my furniture fell apart, but it was not assembled properly and I had to ask a friend to re-assemble some of it. Now it’s working better. Please share this optimistic story with your poor neighbour!

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  5. what can I say what I learn for my divorce
    Lesson no.1
    Don’t ask anything to the ex. If he didn’t do it while I was married to him, certainly won’t do now.
    Lesson no.2
    Don’t ask for help to any men. They say they will do it, but when the things get rough they are the first to leave, or just do a bigger mess and don’t clean it.
    Lesson no. 3
    If you want something, do it yourself! Yes! it isn’t easy, yes you have to figure out how to move a heavy and big object, but if you put your mind to it, You will do it! And YEs! Was me who made all the moving. Disassembled all furniture from my home and mounted all furniture again, and everything still works.
    Lesson no.4
    If you for any reason forgot lesson no.1 or 2. Just remember why do you divorce him in the first place. And men when they fell they will work but won’t get anything in change, they don’t really help.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for reading and for sharing you lessons! You are right, of course, but one needs to learn on her or his own… You are brave to have moved on your own, I do rely on myself only in most things, but this seemed a bit too much to attempt alone. In any case, now my moving is over and I’m all fine and happy to be married to my cat now only 😉

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  6. I still feel bad for you when I realise you divorced your husband – well,not officially,but you get what I mean! I hope you’re feeling way better than I imagine! In God of Small Things,the main character comes back from America and tells an old man she knows from childhood that she is divorced.The man is startled and repeats: ”DIE-VORCED???”.Haha.

    This episode of your life has made me think a lot over the issue of marriage.How can we tie the knot with somebody we’re not sure to love in,say,12 years,as in your case.When I realise how much I’ve changed over the past 3-4 years,I just cannot project myself staying with the same person for such a long period of time.

    Moreover I believe we have constants and non-constants in life.Your cat (or my books) is a constant in that she will never change irrespective of the ‘transformation’ that takes place in you – sure,your cat will pass away,but she will remain the same till her very last breath.On the other hand,your life partner (”life partner”,how optimistic,or should I say delusional,is that?) is a constant,as he evolves at the same rate as you,yet,you cannot guarantee that the change occurring in him will occur parallelly to yours (i.e. in the same direction).I guess that’s why many people divorced; there comes a point where the love is just,plainly gone and they are found looking in opposite directions.

    And yeah,isn’t it awkward to have him and his family constantly around when you’ve decided to turn the page? 😮

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    1. Thank you very much for your brilliant comment. It reads like a short essay: well structured, thought-provoking, with little gems of insights… It could be worth blogging it!

      You raise so many intriguing questions; actually, it seems that you think about the implications of marriage and divorce much more than me! You are of course right that it is a serious decision that cannot be done light-heartedly. I believe I wasn’t irresponsible, as I married after a five-year-long relationship, yet as you put it so well, my husband and me went on to develop in different directions. I didn’t realise how much people can change, and we both changed significantly; enough for us to drift apart and be unable to work as a couple any more. I’m not terribly sorry that I married, neither am I sorry that I divorced, it had to be done. It is a shame in a way, but it had to be done.

      Your little story about die-vorce is hilarious! I will remember that 😀

      Thank you again for your thoughts. I have told you before, but you are very mature, especially for your age. (That’s an awkward compliment.)

      Liked by 1 person

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