Except for my books, crafting supplies and some odds and sods that will stay in storage for another week or so, we’re pretty much moved in. Yay! We were in pretty bad shape after a couple of days of Logistics Extraordinaire, whole body aching and general tired-brain-confusion, plus getting the sniffles. But we did it.
I was worried that the cat would be freaked out from all the change lately. And the first day he was; he followed us around everywhere, not being used to not seeing us all the time (new place is a bit bigger than he is used to). But as soon as we got the couch set up, he was fine. I think he’s settled in much faster than we have. Comfy Couch Cat.
This was the first place we went to look at, way back in January. We went just for fun, really. It was way too bright and nice and spacious, and so did at least another 15 couples think as well, who all looked very pregnant, desperate and rich. We didn’t bid. Of course we didn’t. We a budget, and the bidding war was in the air. So we left, saying that it was really great but we could never afford it. One day, maybe.
Then, about 3 months later, when we were on holiday, we found out that it was up for sale again. For a lower price than expected. The bidders had backed out, the moving-in date didn’t suite them. But it sure as hell suited us. We called the estate agent, from England, and said that we’ve seen it, we had the cash, and we *** wanted it. Many other people called as well, but wanted private viewings, and the sellers just wanted to close the deal.
So we signed papers, and faxed them, from Italy, with the assistance of my parents and the estate agent and the nice people in reception. I think, with fixing up my place and selling it, and going on holiday, and talk to banks, and buy a new home at the same time, we’ve mastered the art of multitasking by now.
And then… we have to wait. Six weeks all in all, but it’s only a little under two weeks left now. And then we can finally move in.
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What I think is weird is how you live in a place and you feel at home, and you sort of start to stagnate, and what you once upon a time thought you’d “fix” or “change” just never happened, your home is now your little fortified castle where things are ever so slightly but continually in disarray, but it’s your mess so it doesn’t matter, but still you wished you would have had time to fix or change things and make it a bit nicer.
But then when you decide to leave there’s suddenly this surge; you want to move on, you plan and you do and you make, onwards and upwards! You plan for every eventuality, everything has to click, and even though you’re pretty sure everything will work out just fine, you still don’t dare to hope, you don’t want to jinx it, just in case.
So I haven’t talked much about the whole process. I didn’t want to jinx it. We did an incredible amount of work in just 10 days, because that’s what we had before we were going on the two-week vacation we had planned a while ago. A longer while than the actual moving plans, strangely enough. We realised, a couple of weeks before our holiday, that we had to get the timing right, and so we rolled up our sleeves and went at it.
Once you fix things and sort stuff out, this little home suddenly looks pretty great. And you remind yourself that this was your place, your little fortified panic room, and in the afterglow of it all you sort of don’t want to leave it. I don’t know how many times I said “I’ve wanted to get this fixed for YEARS”, or “Why didn’t I do this ages ago?”.
We got it done in time for the photo shoot for the add, and then we left for England and Italy for two days later. It was a strange contrast; two weeks of slaving away verses two weeks of utter escapism and leisure. Of course it was also a bit of an anticlimax, getting everything ready for a sale and then… just… wait. I just wanted everything to be over and done with. And I was really worried no one would want to buy my apartment, my home, my fort, you know, the place I love. In an odd sort of way it would make me feel oddly rejected. But the photos for the add turned out pretty well, I think:
Of course, in the end someone bought it. We got home from our vacation, the estate agent arranged for two viewings, people came, people bid, and it all went far better than expected. When I went to sign the papers, meeting my buyers for the first time, they turned out to be a very cute, artistic looking young couple with a 2 year old boy. I was happy, they were happy (especially the boy, who got a cookie at the estate agent’s office), and all the things I’ve loved about my home they expressed an appreciation and very prominent enthusiasm for as well. Which made me feel good, like I wasn’t abandoning my apartment, but rather turning it over to someone else who will care for it and love it.
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A lot has been going on the last couple of months. Since February? Since X-mas? It started out so much smaller, just a wish to sort my place out and making it less encumbered, more organised, more like a home. I started sorting through my basement last year, sorted through my books and gave half my stuff away to goodwill, and Jed built some shelves for me for better storage and it sort of moved on from there. I found a great little sink for my bathroom and Jed helped me install it, and it looked great, and my apartment stated looking great. Then we were suddenly looking at apartments, just for fun, you know, we weren’t in any hurry or anything. Until suddenly we were, because suddenly we had a PLAN. I threw out a lot more of my stuff, and did a lot more DIY and packed a lot of boxes.
I realised that I’ve spent over 13 years living in one specific area in Stockholm. That’s a long time. Actually, it’s most of my life as an adult. I remember when I moved away from home, and this area was the promised land; everything was new and exciting and even the tiny crappy grocery store on the corner was awesome. This area is so familiar to me now that it’s sort of meta. I walk the same routes every day, shop in the same store, I know the time table for the buses and the subway by heart and even though the area evolves and changes, just as my life has, it’s still all so very… constant. Continual. Same same, but different, you know?
But I’m moving now. I have sold my old apartment. It feels a bit sad, and at the same time it feels like a relief. I love my home, but I’m done. It’s old and full of charm and personality, but it is also very cold in the winter and filled with way to much baggage. Out with the old, in with the new. Good riddance.
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I am sort of between homes at the moment (not quite as severe as Nick Jaffe) due to being in the process of selling my apartment and camping out at Jed’s until we get access to our new place. A lot of planning, a lot of logistics. My key chain is starting to get ridiculous, but seems a bit symbolic for how my life feels right now.