A previous move

I’ve half forgotten about The Move. But I was reminded of a previous move when perusing my holiday morning paper. It was the move from Sweden to England, and it was done very much on a budget.

The new Resident IT Consultant gave me all his money, and I promptly left the country. Went shopping at IKEA (this was B.I. – before IKEA – in the UK), and even if I say so myself, I spent his money wisely. Then there was the question of how to shift the stuff across the North Sea.

Mother-of-witch called upon her colleague, my former deputy headmaster; a very capable and energetic man. Mr Z had cycled to Sweden from his native Hungary in 1956, so IKEA wardrobes to England didn’t pose much of a problem for him.

We used his VW van, and loaded it up with all the flatpacks. This made the van very heavy, and we held our collective breath all the way to Brighton, but the van survived. Or its feathers did. Only joking; I meant the suspension.

Mr Z brought along one of his many children to help with the lifting. This was a capable boy of about 14, and he didn’t once object to sitting on an upside down beer crate all the way to Brighton. (I paid for his ticket, after all. Or rather, the Resident IT Consultant did.)

It all went well. Except for the second move when they shifted the Resident IT Consultant’s book cases – and other rubbish – from London to Sussex. I believe some of the shelves went flying on the Edgware Road. (Yes, that was us!)

The extra reward for the two Zs was to see a match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Manchester United… (You can tell this was a long time ago, can’t you?)

Mr Z will not be called upon to move again, although he has continued to be kind and very useful on many occasions, including charming GP Cousin to go on holiday through his holiday company. But I was reminded of the unassuming boy on the beer crate a week or two ago. His baby brother is now press secretary to the Foreign Minister Carl Bildt.

I belive it’s the result of a ‘can do’ attitude that not all people possess. But sitting on beer crates and recycling other people’s cast-off cars and furniture make for good citizens. And I know that some people believe immigrants only come for what they can get. But so many work very hard, and sometimes their journey starts with a cycle ride through Europe.

6 responses to “A previous move

  1. My big moves tended to involve plane trips, which does concentrate the mind on what’s absolutely essential. (The Scottish moving company which got me to my current location also deserves a lot of praise – they collected my possessions without complaint with the instructions ‘they’ll be going somewhere in Germany, at some point,’ and then got everything over here so speedily on the delivery date that they had time to help me unpack too!

    I liked the bicycle comment, and can only agree – my grandfather got out of Nazi Germany in 1938 by cycling from Berlin to Copenhagen. I’ve thought about retracing the journey, one day.

  2. Helping people move is good for the soul. At least that’s how I exhort my friends when they’ve helped me. Haven’t yet resorted to tickets to sports events, though the women’s roller derby team here is proving popular.

  3. That sounds promising, Lauren. Daughter needs to put her stuff in storage for a few weeks, and I hope the company will remember where they hid her stuff, so she gets it back when she needs it.
    Mr Z was only 16 when he cycled, which makes his decision to go even more interesting. And he then put himself through education in a new country and a new language, without parents.

    Seana, the Resident IT Consultant is forever crisscrossing the country these days, to shift Son and Daughter from one place to another. It’s the carrying he minds. That, and having to throw double beds across garden walls when the stairs are too narrow.

  4. Most of what I make my friends move are books, so you can imagine how fond they are afterward.

  5. Pingback: Kalmar and me | Bookwitch

  6. Pingback: Van men | The Occasional Bookwitch

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