Friday, 22 August 2014

Relocation Update No. 4 - Well we made it: and other news too!

Hello Everyone - and to echo the title of this post,  Cy Bear and I have made it!

We now reside in a quiet, residential complex for mature folk in the small Nottinghamshire town of Kirkby-in-Ashfield, some 25 miles north of Nottingham itself.  We're two weeks into our new surroundings, although I only moved in myself at the beginning of this week (August 18th to be precise).  Cy Bear, together with all the Cuddlies, moved away from Wiltshire on August 11th and were duly deposited in their new home on August 12th

To say the experience was breath-taking is an accurate description.  The removal crew were so quick and so efficient, that things got packed away before I could tell them they should remain in situ - for others to remove after my departure. The result - first thing next day, was a cry for help to Alan's father for his assistance in removing one double mattress to the local dump.  It had been  rejected on the grounds that the important fire retardant label had been removed (seem to recall Peter got fed up with it scratching his legs everytime he passed by it and used a convenient pair of scissors to remove it!)  The British Heart Foundation benefitted from the other one and the North American style, three foot wide 3-drawer steel filing cabinet which had accompanied Peter and I in our various moves since it's purchase in the early 1980's (with hardly a scratch to show for it's adventures!). Those items, together with a working washing machine (which  was sold!) were the only things that could not be fitted into my current dwelling.  The result admittedly is a tight squeeze, but there's room enough for me to move around - or there will be when everything is in it's correct place eventually!

The whole moving experience lasted a total of  six and one quarter hours - 3.5 hours packing everything into two vans the first day,  and 2.75 hours unpacking the next.  The task was undertaken by two fathers and their respective sons, who were obviously used to each other's reactions in such situations and the task was accomplished with very little chit-chat between them.  Nothing was broken, and they even took the trouble to leave pathways in the living room in my present abode to enable one to move between the piled up boxes during the unpacking process - while they placed the furniture in the bedroom, living room and kitchen areas according to the floor plan I had created.

Clare and Alan, having just moved home themselves, were still in relocation mode themselves.  This resulted in all the many boxes - I lost count after about 30! - being unpacked and the contents distributed somewhere into the nearest convenient place (for me to sort out over the following days). All the packing cases had been taken to the dump by the Thursday morning!  I don't move as fast as heretofore - and fitting a two-bed flat into one living room and one bedroom has taken a bit of doing. The process is on-going - but we're getting there.  Hopefully, this will explain the gap in publishing posts here over the past few weeks. We will try to do better - soon!

One thing emerged during the packing up process however - once all the other unbreakable objects had been packed by me.  My fabric stash was, and still is MASSIVE.  I was not prepared to sacrifice much of it given the quality of plush fur accumulated - not to mention all the other plush, tweeds, velvets etc that had accumulated during the 4 years since starting COLDHAMCUDDLIES in February 2010.

This was just the bottom half of the fabric store cupboard.  There was a canvas travelling case semi-full which normally resided under my former double bed, coupled with that stored in the upper shelves above the cupboard, shown below:

Here all the fleeces, some leathers and felts were kept, and then there was all the sewing equipment and sewing machine to packed too.  As I  packed, a sinking feeling started and the thought occurred that I might be biting off a bit more than I could chew, but nevertheless having started, the process one carried on.

The result was that the fabrics alone looked like this when awaiting relocation into a removal van -

to be followed by the "Body Bag" (the family description after they had been purchased before we returned from Canada in 1987!) containing all the Cuddlies in their various plastic bags on top of the pile.

At the Nottinghamshire end, my fears were pretty well realised when, after finding spaces for rest of my stuff, the three of us faced the prospect of fitting that pile into the one big cupboard in the flat, next door to the front cupboard - usually housing vacuum cleaners etc in any other normal person's home!  The result is now like this:

Cy Bear sitting on top of the Body Bag containing his fellow Cuddlies, which is on top of one of the fabric Body Bags in my bedroom.  The rest of the Cuddlies raw materials are unceremoniously stuffed into the cupboard like this.

and the top of the same cupboard:

So how are we contemplating solving the seemingly unsolvable?  Someone - I think it could have been Philippa - suggested acquiring vacuum bags and these have accordingly been purchased.  They arrived earlier today, and the process of housing the plush will begin tomorrow.  We do have some leeway however:  the two canvas suitcases are destined for Clare and Alan's home - to be used in the not too distant future by them - if they choose to.  They contain baby clothes that I have saved - and are still in good condition.  They have been worn  by every family baby since Philippa - the oldest cousin - was born. (Clare and Alan received the good news that they have been approved as prospective Adoptive Parents this very day (having passed their Adoption Panel last week after a pretty stressful few months).  Together with the space the cases have occupied since Cy Bear and I arrived, and the two shelves in the next door front cupboard - I'm hoping the vacuum bags will prove my "salvation". (An update on that will come in the next post or two!)

The uppermost shelf here is currently occupied by painting material left behind by the maintenance staff who only managed to redecorate the living room before we all arrived on August 12th.  Their materials will remain for them to complete redoing the hallway (the bedroom really doesn't need it) during the few days I am going away to stay with Philippa at the end of next week, so that shelf will be available eventually as well.

Cy Bear has recovered his equanimity after being unceremoniously pushed into a very convenient corner in one of the boxes which contained books and house linen.

He was not a happy Bear to begin with, because he had to perch on top of the travelling case containing all the Cuddlies  in the new bedroom. 

 (That is still where he is put each night when I hit the hay, as the new - very comfortable - single bed is now not large enough to accommodate the two of us.  Not that he did before - I'm a very restless sleeper, and I don't think Cy Bear is the sort who would appreciate being uncermoniously removed in my sleep!!!)

Until the next time - as I look forward to the next stage in the life of  COLDHAMCUDDLIES, which  is beginning to look very promising - on all fronts.  

Good night - and God bless you all  Isobel.

Coldham Cuddlies Clinic