For someone who likes her routines and her life just so, I've been doing a lot of different things over the last couple of weeks. Getting up really early. Minimising my stuff. Making countless lists, even more than I usually do. And going out - a LOT.
It's all in aid of something, something pretty exciting (has to be to get me out of bed at such unreasonable hours, really). Condiments on a City Life is changing and going places - New York, to be exact. Oh, and so am I.
Yes, that's right, New York, New York. The city so nice they named it twice (H1 keeps demanding that I stop saying that, but I don't think this counts*). The Big Apple. Ummmm...other cliches, and so on.
I'm very excited, in a highly surreal way. To be honest, stress trumps excitement at this very point. This very morning we sent ten large boxes of our stuff away with some man - I'm going to hope he's from the shipping company - yet still, there is stuff everywhere. EVERYWHERE. The whole 'minimise your stuff' plan has failed miserably. I've thrown out a lot of stuff I've since discovered I need, sent a whole lot of other stuff away with some random man, and yes, have since discovered I need it, and have a whole lot of stuff sitting around my house, mirroring my confused, bewildered state, looking sad and forlorn without the other stuff giving it context. Those people who sell everything, give all the money to charity, then live in a forest for a year before writing a book about it? They're no more altruistic or worthy than you and I. They just tried to move countries, decided it was too hard, and gave up.
It's quite funny how difficult it is, actually, in a 'I'll laugh at that when I remember how to laugh' way. Last time I moved countries I threw some stuff I liked in an oversized backpack, threw the stuff I liked less in some boxes, then flippantly waved a hand towards the boxes and my cat** as I wandered out the door with my giant backpack, saying to my parents, "You'll look after that, won't you? Oh, and can I have a lift to the airport?"
This time it's like a military operation, if the military was disorganised, shambolic, and confused (hold your sardonic comments, please. We're off to the States, there's no place for them there). The problem is that there is nobody to leave anything with, because my parents have selfishly remained in their home country, rather than following me round the world so they can look after anything I no longer have space for. So everything goes.
As an aside, I've realised what separates us from the animals. It's not opposable thumbs. It's stuff. The reason we maintain such long, close relationships with family is because we have stuff, and sometimes we need to leave that stuff somewhere, with someone else. This is why parents exist.
And I KNOW I sound like a spoilt brat. I'm always conscious of that, but because I'm always in a hurry these days, and at any given moment seventeen different things I need to do are popping into my head, I have had to polish a non-spoilt, fully explanatory, detailed answer to the question, "New York? Wow. Aren't you excited?" As the 'ed' of excited is still rolling off their tongue, I launch into, "OhyesofcoursesoexcitedterriblyluckyNewYorkimaginestilllotstodoofcoursemustgetonbye!" and then disappear before their eyes. It works well. And is true - I am excited, and awfully lucky. I'm just aware that I'm going to be more excited when all this stuff is sorted.
Still - New York. Wow. Imagine how much my life's going to change. Imagine all the exciting new things I'm going to do, all the exciting new people I'm going to meet, all the exciting new places I'm going to see...on the way from JFK to my new apartment, because when I get there, I'm just going to crawl into a dark corner and catch up on everything I've been neglecting these last few weeks. H1. Eating. Breathing. Stuff like that.
So that's it. Bye London***.
*I checked. It does. Oh well.
**I'm not heartless. I really like my cat, I just don't want her corrupted by the big city.
***SOB - bye London, Fulham, the river, the green shop, the weird sex shop next door (still going!) Bye gelato shop, I'm really sorry you and I didn't get more acquainted. Bye homeless men in the park, the park itself, the yummy mummies. Bye unnamed generic coffee shop on Fulham Road (still not sponsoring me, humph). Bye.