We had been delaying digging into the practical aspects of moving because we were afraid that it might jinx the sale of the house. Then we started to focus on what needed to be done in terms of paperwork and we decided to get to work. Worst case is that we are ahead of the game.
While I have read a few books and had conversations with a number of people in Ireland, and at the Irish Embassy, there is no question that the best resource for people considering moving is Scott Simon’s website movetoireland.com. It covers everything in minute detail. It is well organized and provides valuable feedback from other people who have worked through the process and successfully moved. He even has a monthly newsletter.
One of the things we are wrestling with is what personal possessions do we care about enough to ship overseas. My first thought was that we would take almost everything and then sort things out on the other side. Then I realised that cost was going to be an issue and years worth of things suddenly began to lose their importance. At the moment I think we are down to about a dozen things: our bed, a sofa we like a lot, a few comfortable chairs, one or two tables and some artwork. What is paining me the most at the moment are my books. I have collected them for years and they are a valuable asset that I use all the time. Many can not be easily replaced and are very precious to me. The problem?
They are heavy!
I want to take most of them and my Ikea bookcases that house them so well, but my wife is saying no to the bookcases — better she says to buy some new ones when we move and help the Irish economy. My wife checked and there is an Ikea in Dublin. So much for the bookcases — they are going into storage or to a yard sale. The trade-off is that I will be able to take more books.
It is very odd to wander around the house and look at things you have lived with for over 30 years and pass judgment on their importance.
I was sitting in the living room last night looking at an 8 volume collection of Shakespeare’s plays published in 1847. I thought they had belonged to my grandfather. I had not read any of them for a while, and then I remembered that they did not belong to my grandfather, but did in fact belong to my great grandfather. My father told me that he had purchased them to refine his reading skills when he was a boy, and had passed them along to my grandfather and that is how they made their way to me. My father had read them when he was in high school. He insisted that was what made him decide to be an english major in college. He had memorized large sections of the plays and I grew up with frequent oratories from Shakespeare.
He loved Hamlet and for some reason this one has always stayed with me,
“What a piece of work is a man, how noble in reason, how infinite in faculties, in form and moving how express and admirable, in action how like an angel, in apprehension how like a god.”
Sorry I couldn’t resist the quote — these books are definitely going with me.
I’m still learning about blogging and I think that writing shorter entries more frequently may work better. I think this is a process that could become quite addictive.