Saturday, 23 August 2008

Of Twirl bars and packing

Almost through August! This is like the last bit of an exhausting relay race for me, thankfully I haven’t dropped the baton (unlike some – ouch) but have it in my grimy mitt and am running for dear life at the finishing line. This has been the summer of bills and scrubbing down the sofa looking for pennies, of recycling and stocking the hatches with Twirl bars before buttoning them down. I shall be so pleased to get to pay day in September and take a breather.

We have a moving date for the flat – going back in June we asked to be let out of our contract as the rent and electricity bills this airy flat racks up is extortionate. Yet only in September - and two days before my birthday – can the landlord release us, so we will be finally free from the huge bills! Sadly it doesn’t look like we will be able to afford deposit etc for a new flat when we vacate the old, which means in September I will be a year older, pot-less and back at my mum’s. That is not the right way of thinking to feel a confident, contributing member of society; it’s the sort of thought that wonders if ‘mad failed bag lady with 100 cats, lives in parent’s shed’ lies within my future. J has assured me this won’t be so, to which I nod and agree, while privately thinking ‘mad failed bag lady and partner, 100 cats, 3 dogs and a playstation, living in parent’s shed’.

But I am trying to stay positive – it really is near the end of this skint phase, as soon as the next pay checks roll in then we’ll be able to pay a few things off and start anew, and it will be nice to live somewhere that isn’t so greedy with our cash!

So – with that in mind I have started looking at flats and houses that are more affordable. Now this is where the first hurdle comes in – I like the type of cottages last seen in an Agatha Christie novel. I want a small and cosy little place, with a courtyard garden, a spare room for books and computer, trailing plants at the kitchen window and some sort of period detail. J on the other hand likes penthouses – the sort seen in some upmarket American HBO programme – all gleaming chrome, polished wooden floorboards and some sort of gadget that works the windows. Trying to marry these two ideas together is nigh on impossible – we both have to settle for a little less that our ideal. So I will go for a flat as long as it has some sort of quirk, and J will go for period detail as long as it is not too small. Together it boils down to wanting to be close to the train station (me), parking space (J), bathroom with window (both), space for bikes (both), dishwasher (me), good kitchen (both), and central heating (ME!). So far we have lived in 3 places that have all been lovely in their own ways, so here’s hoping place no 4 turns out to be a just as nice.

This also means I will be off-line for quite a while… I am already gutted, and I have over three weeks left of broadband time! I think I will be able to post to here at work, so that should be ok – but I use a computer for everything – banking, travel arrangements, news, staying in touch… It will be a weird old time without access to the T’internet.

And finally, back to packing. I am trying to see it all with new eyes and think can I get rid of that? Take it to a charity shop? Chuck it? Recycle? Freecycle? I have been trying to whittle down piles of papers and old magazines – very reluctantly in some cases, as if I keep things its always because I think there is an idea in there worthy of further exploration! But now I have to show no mercy – space is not infinite, I am beginning to discover.

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