The Little Things Count

It’s the little things that stump me. Yes, I’m relieved to have the house packed up (mostly). The boxes are in the storage unit. Only my clothes left to sort. But what should I do with the cords and cables to various electronic devices that I collected from numerous hiding places around the house? Or those magazines I saved? And what about the tall vase that won’t fit in a box? Store it? why? Will I ship it? Probably not. It’s too nice to trash. Not worth the time and trouble to sell it on Craigslist. So what, then?

Usually when I move, I throw those extra odd items in the back seat of the car and transport them casually to their new home. But the car isn’t going to France. I’ve moved many times–several times across country. But even then, the odds and ends went into the back seat. Now there’s no back seat. And space is premium, or rather the money it would cost to ship it is premium.

Relocating across the ocean brings up a new moving problem: everything must have a place, plan or purpose. Every item must be carefully considered. Will it fit in a suitcase? And if so, will it occupy a space that a more important item should fill? Can it be shipped? Is it too heavy? Is it worth it?

The best solution I’ve found for making some questionable items disappear is to bestow gifts on my friends. My musical friend gets the song books. The guitar goes to her husband. My roommate gets the piano. (Yes, there is a theme here; and yes, the frenchman is a musician, too). Today, another friend took the 200-lb treadle pottery wheel because her father collects antiques. And what would I have done with it otherwise? I’m not sure there’s a category on Craigslist for over-sized, antique pottery wheel.


By this time next week I will report that the house is packed and empty. Right now, boxes are stacked in every room; a friend is coming Saturday to move them, and then I will have a major hurdle behind me.

The computer is on its way from Apple. The Vital Records office delivered my birth certificate (an important document when moving abroad). Power of Attorney docs are ready to be signed and notarized. The strike-throughs on my list are growing.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the ocean, my little frenchman is waiting, not so patiently. For both of us the near future is surreal. After two years of long online conversations and brief visits, we will spend every day together. He’s planning a party in my honor to introduce me to all the friends and family I haven’t yet met. It’s cute, really. He’s so proud to be bringing his American love to France, he really wants to show me off. And I’m anxious to meet them all; but more anxious to see him.

3 Weeks and Counting

The excitement is starting to build. I was finding it difficult to look forward because I have so much to do before I leave; stress was overriding joy.

A few things moved along this weekend that relieved some stress. I posted furniture for sale to Craigslist and got lots of hits. I think I will sell quite a few items this week. I still feel overwhelmed about packing up the house.

The biggie is that I finished preparing my taxes !  Yeah ! Well, almost. I lost one W2, so I have to call for a new one; but once I plug those figures in, I can file. I’m getting a refund. I guess that’s what really made me feel better. It’s not just the money. It removes a little stress because the next few months are iffy–the unknown. Quit my job, remember?

I’m ticking off my list of things to do: clean up computer; get boxes; find important documents; pack up office; change address; stop the cable and electric; etc. I’m so organized as to have a spreadsheet. I checked my list today and it made me feel pretty good. I’ve finished over half with 3 weeks to go.

Except the house. This weekend is big packing weekend. I’ve got to get it done! Like 50% of the population, I’m a procrastinator when it comes to things I hate. But with only 3 weekends left, I’ve got to empty the house.

And my frenchman? Well, he’s anxiously awaiting my arrival.

Another Detail

I did it. Today I resigned from my job (5 weeks notice).

OMG! I resigned from my job!

Oh, did I forget to mention this is not all about a guy? Sorry to disappoint you hopeless romantics out there. I have this wonderful opportunity to use my marketing skills in a small French company. I guess I did forget to mention that I have been offered a job. One of those “details”: how will I support myself abroad? Remember, I’m not independently wealthy.

So these first three months are really a fact-finding mission: Will the guy work out? Will the job work out? (can’t actually work until I get the VISA–another detail) Can I live in the South of France?

Well, I have three months to figure it out. But the odds are looking pretty good.