The business of moving

One of the things that Danny and I are finding as we’re preparing for this move is that our basic philosophies of what is easier and/or more logical when it comes to moving are very very different. Not surprising to anyone who knows us, I’m sure, as so many facets of our personalities are definitely very different, but this is one we hadn’t run up against before. Here’s our basic scenario: we’re moving home for about four or five months, then moving again to another overseas post where we will be for three years and at which we will have a really apartment with access to real grocery stores and the ability to go outside.

My general belief is that if someone is going to do your moving for you, it’s generally easier to go through everything you have before you move to get rid of the extraneous stuff, and then let them move everything. Clearly influenced by my previous life as a military brat, in which all I had to do was pick which toys and later clothes we were giving away, which ones went into air freight, and which ones went in our household effects. To that end, I’ve been advocating for getting all of our stuff out of storage, delivered to our temporary home, and then packed up again in December or January before we leave. I admit, even I don’t know that unpacking, repacking and unpacking again within six months is actually easier, but at least that way I get to have my stuff while we’re home and we don’t end up in our next post with sixteen boxes of things that have been in storage for the past two or three years even before we moved that we don’t even recognize as ours.

Danny was in favor of either having everything shipped straight from storage to our next post and making do while we were home with whatever is provided in a furnished apartment, thereby eliminating one of the extra packings and unpackings. Although I can see how that’s probably more convenient on one level, I still want my things back, even thought it would just be a difference of a few months. I think some of it has to do with our different philosophies on moving — he sees most anything that we’ll be doing in the next few years as temporary, so doesn’t see the point in getting everything out of storage for a temporary living situation. I, on the other hand, want to have all of my things around me so I can convince myself that wherever it is that I am is actually home even if only when I’m inside.

The other point of discussion has been the car — we’re home for five months, give or take. Do we buy a car there and have it shipped out, or rent one for five months and then buy one once we get to our next post? Do we buy a newish car at home, or an older one we don’t mind being destroyed in transatlantic shipping? If we buy one there, same question — older or newer? My initial thought is that it’s easier to buy one in the States and ship it, since that way we can get whatever we want and someone else has to bother moving it. Danny generally agrees but pointed out that we should probably make sure they can actually get parts for and/or fix whatever car we get in our next temporary home. A valid point, I must admit.

We haven’t come to final decisions on all of these points yet, and I’m sure we’ll change our minds a few more times between now and January. I just thought it was interesting to see how things end up working. We have less than a month to go, which is awfully exciting!