We are due to move tomorrow. My husband, however, has adopted a policy position on the move and decided we do not need to pack anything. Cardboard boxes, tea-chests and plastic crates are just so last year that we have refused to use any of them. What he is going to do is drive a white transit van up to the back door and throw things in it. This does not necessarily strike me as the best idea but my husband says it will work. I must say I cannot face doing it on my own having gone through the upheaval of moving when we came up from London, so I have decided to give him the benefit of the doubt and do it his way. His plan - I say "plan" I do not know the word for the opposite of "plan". I need a word to wrap up in nine letters or less, the idea of sitting at your desk working hard to meet your professional deadlines while you drink tea, eat digestive biscuits and utterly ignore the really big hairy mammoth gallomphing towards you straight out of your personal life.
The plan then, (for want of another word,) is to manhandle the contents of the cottage out into the van on a room by room basis, drive it two miles down the lane to the rented house and then unpack the contents and install them on a room by room basis into the rented house, recreating our life exactly as it was before. Perhaps, he was a museum curator in a different incarnation. In fact, he could probably submit it for the Turner prize. He could call it something like: "Our life - a mess in two places." If I videoed it while he was doing it, he would probably win. I want to know before we start this ad hoc "moving is such a lark tra-la" process, whether he is going to mark everything up with blue chalk so each apple core and mouldy coffee cup will be carefully put back in their original spot.
I blame myself. I think I am coming to the conclusion that what I have always regarded as a certain easy-going quality is in reality, a deep passivity. Part of me thinks "You have to be joking" and wants to stand and giggle while it all goes on. But the other half of me increasingly wants to jump up and down in rage and shout "We move tomorrow. Move! Do you know what that means? We need to be sorting things out, putting them in piles, throwing them away. Good grief." That is the point at which I take a deep breath. I honestly do not mind the chaos and relentlessness of it all most of the time. Just occasionally I wonder what it would be like to live a Von Trapp sort of life (before Maria arrived). I bet he could always find his car keys for instance. I think I am partly feeling this way because I was told off by a friend in London for being so meekly acquiescent to the chaos of our life. "Doesn't everyone live in chaos though?" I pleaded with her. "No," she told me as she bundled me efficiently along a North London canal path from her high powered office to a pastel coloured haven that looked like a toy-shop but actually sold coffee and iced cupcakes. "I don't live that way. Most people don't. You shouldn't." I know she is right. I just don't know what to do about it. I do know that all my closest friends keep telling me to get a grip on my life. I can refuse to eat the cupcakes they put in front of me, I can put my fingers in my ears and hum while they talk, I can take refuge in feelings of hurt and self-pity, but deep down I know they can't all be wrong.