4 More Days

I’m ready for this week to be finished.

The apartment is a mess.  The floor needs to be vacuumed.  Boxes are lying around, some full, some empty, but mostly empty.  The first set of movers comes in the morning and we’ve been dismantling the TV and entertainment center, along with Joe’s cot.  7am is going to come bright and early.

I’ve managed to get rid of quite a few items on TradeMe and even Freecycle.  Some funny stories from that…

– A guy requested our queen-size memory foam mattress topper from Freecyle.  He came to pick it up but got lost and was apparently driving around our building for an hour, just trying to find parking.  We kept telling him to simply pull onto the footpath next to the car park, that it would literally take 5 minutes to get the mattress topper down to him, but he couldn’t find the car park entry.  He eventually found a place and he and Chris carried it down to his car: a 2 door sports car with 2 children in the back and a teenager in the front, plus a trunk load of boxes.  Where on earth did he expect the mattress topper to go?  They eventually figured it out, with all of the boxes being pushed and stacked and placed on top of laps so that the mattress topper could be squished into the trunk.

Side note: One thing that annoys me is when people buy something of mine on TradeMe, I send detailed directions (street address, cross street, the color of our building, the name of the cafe at the end of our building, the major tourist attraction across from our building, and the fact that it’s the only building on the corner), and people don’t bother to bring the directions with them.  So many people will text me, saying, “I’m lost – where do u live?” and I end up typing out a v-e-r-y long text message, only to have them text back with, “Still can’t find it – please text with directions again.”  I usually text back at this point and say, “You need to call me”, and have several times had people text back to say that they don’t have enough minutes or money in their account to call me.  Well, in that case, perhaps you (a) shouldn’t be buying stuff on TradeMe and (b) should have printed the directions rather than spending money on texts.  I know, I know, I’m mean!

– A woman purchased our 2 seater leather sofa.  There was a full description on TradeMe plus a photo and an invitation for people to text me if they wanted to view it in person.  She showed up to pay for it, and between her, her friend, and my husband, they carried it down a flight of stairs, into the lift and down four levels, outside, loaded it onto a trailer, and tied it down.  Just as Chris had shut the door in our apartment, she called me to complain.  She said that I had told her on TradeMe that it was a black sofa, but she could clearly tell that it was brown and she did not want a brown sofa.  I didn’t know what to say.  You would think that with all of that information, both online and in person, she would have noticed that it was brown before that point, but she hadn’t.  I did feel sorry for her – it must really stink to find yourself stuck with a sofa that doesn’t match what you pictured – but I didn’t offer a refund.

– I was sad to see my treadmill go.  When I woke up the next morning and saw a space where it used to stand, I got a little pang in my heart.  Ridiculous, I know, but it was such a good treadmill!  The story with that goes like this: the buyer’s brother came to pick it up 3 1/2 hours after the buyer said he would be there.  I got to listen to an earful of what the brother thought of his brother (the buyer), because he hadn’t know he needed to pick it up till he got a call while fishing on his boat out by Rangitoto Island that afternoon.  And it was a gorgeous day.  I’m sure he wasn’t thrilled at having to pull in his line and head back to the harbor.  Between him, his son, and Chris, they carried the treadmill downstairs and into the lift.  As the lift doors were closing and I was walking back to our apartment, I thought, “Whew – that was easy.”  I should have known better.  After 20 minutes had passed and Chris hadn’t come back upstairs, I began to get worried and was about to call him.  He called me at just that moment and the first thing he said was, “Well, I’ve got some bad news…”  Apparently these 3 guys decided that rather than walk the treadmill to the trailer using the handcart, they would back the trailer into the car park.  The trailer was just outside the car park door, so not far away, but they figured, “Why not make our job easier?”  It would have been fine if someone amongst the 3 of them had looked at the height difference between the trailer and the car park entry.  Yes, the brother of the buyer backed the trailer into the top of car park door, mangling the bottom 2 panels.  Chris had to call the building manager out from Takapuna at 8pm on a Sunday night and the manager was not happy.  Not. at. all.  Ugh.  We’re still waiting to hear what the costs were for fixing it.

Quarantine

I’ve been keeping Joe on a quarantine of sorts.  No swim lessons, no morning daycare, no library rhyme time, no Mainly Music.  Basically, all of our regular activities are out, as well as anything else that involves close contact with others.  It’s not easy keeping a 15 month old entertained when you can’t leave the house, but he’s had a cold for the last 2 weeks, is getting a little hoarse, and I don’t want to fly to England with a grumpy, under-the-weather child.

Dead Battery

I’ve discovered that the battery in my automatic garage door opener has died.  This is annoying because (a) I use it at least twice a day and (b) I really don’t want to buy a new one when we’re giving it up in 4 days.  Especially because when we moved in to this apartment, they gave me the opener and guess what – it had a dead battery in it that cost $20 to replace.  I was told it was my responsibility even though it was dead when they gave it to me.  I know that I’ll do the nice thing and replace it, because it’s what I would want someone to do for me, but still!  Twenty dollars for a battery!

Things Not to Say to Parent About to Travel with a Small Child

Please, please, please don’t share your horror stories about flying with a small child.  I had to tell Chris to put the kibosh on all of his fore-warnings about how awful it was going to be to fly with Joe from New Zealand to England.  Chris recently got back from a trip to Germany and I heard several times about how uncomfortable he was on the flights and how it was only to get worse with Joe.  I started to get anxious and panicky and finally said, “OK – no more of that!”  Even so, I still remember stories that friends have shared – the time a friend’s child had the opposite reaction to Benadryl and was hyperactive on the plane (this has happened to a few people I know – perhaps another reason why not to unnecessarily medicate your child…?), a friend who had to be wheeled off after a long-haul flight with just her and her 2 children (whimper!), friends getting sick and their children having to be cared for by strangers…  For Pete’s sake, I remember our own nightmarish travel, where Joe had the most horrible dirty nappies that required a change mid-flight during turbulence (read: had to be changed in the seat on my lap) with poo dripping down his leg onto me and people gagging… then another dirty nappy in the airport that destroyed his outfit and blanket… and then another mid-flight dirty nappy that destroyed his only remaining outfit.  He ended up in a dirty onesie that I’d thrown in the carry-on at the last minute + leg warmers.  In December! Augh!  What if history repeats itself?!?!  OK, enough of that now, I’m feeling the tension starting to creep back into my shoulders and I’m getting goosebumps!

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7 comments

  1. Becca says:

    I got tired on your behalf just reading all of this. Hang in there. And we’re here hoping you have a perfect flight with no hiccups!

  2. Sara says:

    Oh wow! And, I thought that I had been busy lately! I will say only this, that my pediatrician warned me that antihistamines have the opposite effect on little ones as they do on adults. She told me this when Julia had a rash and didn’t want me to worry something else was going on if she got a bit hyper. You’ve already done half of that trip when you can to the states, so hopefully you’ll still have your bag of tricks to use.

  3. Kate E. says:

    I do not miss move cross-continentally! Praying you’ll have a smooth move and flight. I can’t wait to hear about your experience in the UK. You are going to have so much fun! (Also, just remember on the flight–you never have to see those people again and it will eventually end.Remind yourself of that during the stressful parts. We don’t really have any horror stories and we’ve done many cross-Atlantic flights with our kiddos.)

  4. Valerie says:

    Yikes! Sounds like you’ve been a busy bee! And keeping Joe quarantined means you didn’t even get those few hours Joe-free time to pack/etc! Bravo for your efforts!

    I loved the TradeMe stories. It doesn’t matter where you live, you’ll never escape the crazies! lol!

  5. Jenny in Iowa says:

    Oh wow, you have so much going on – makes me tired just reading about it all! You are doing amazingly well – you are so organised! I would be scrambling to get everything done in time. It will all be worth it once you get to the UK!

    Try not to worry too much about the flights – you never know, it might all go really well! We are already mentally preparing ourselves for flying to NZ and back with TWO littlies when we go next year (YAY!) My husband is more worried about it than I am – funny story about that. On our last trip my daughter and I flew to NZ ahead of my hubby and he joined us later, so we all flew home together. Our daughter was perfect for me (thank goodness, since I was by myself) and I was looking forward to the trip back to the States being even easier with hubby there to help! But, for some reason, she ended up being very clingy with me on our return journey and wouldn’t let me pass her off to her Daddy at all, so I ended up holding her the ENTIRE time which, as you know, is extremely tiring! The funny part was that once we got back, my hubby told anyone who would listen what an EXHAUSTING and stressful flight home it had been (for him!) :o)

    Safe travels!
    Jenny

  6. Justyn says:

    How about a non-horror story?
    We took 48 flights with four kids in the last few years. Several were over 17 hours long on one leg and a several were just me and four kids. I did not sleep much but nothing bad happened on any of those FORTY-EIGHT flights.
    Joe will be a champ!
    Safe travels!

  7. Priscilla says:

    Busy week! sorry to read about the hiccups with those people collecting their Trade Me purchases. And you are definitely not mean for asking them to call when they’ve already been given directions twice!

    I’ll be praying the flights go smoothly 🙂 yes, you definitely have to go in with a positive mindset and just focus on one flight at a time.

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