So we are going to Spain. . .
but we don't know when
because we don't have orders
because the government needs to pass a budget to fund our travel
and without orders we can't arrange for a pack out of our house hold goods
or make travel arrangements to see friends and family in the US before our big move
and we can't make arrangements for temporary housing while we are waiting to find the right place for us.
And this is life when you work for the government.
So I am very excited about our move, but I guess it will get real once we have actual orders and can get this great big ball rolling.
In the meanwhile. . .
I am purging starting with my books (hardest thing for me to weed)
and going through clothes to give away (who needs 7 pairs of flip flops or 10 swimsuits in Spain?)
or thinking about what I need to do for a new life with new electrical currents.
Yes, I am thinking about electricity. Obsessing over it, actually.
None of our electrical appliances and gadgets will work if they are 110V without a transformer, which is this obnoxious little box you have to keep around to plug said electrical gadgets into.
I know I want to keep my Vitamix and my stand up mixer because I use both of them more than any other appliances, but what about everything else?
Is is worth dragging a waffle maker and toaster, an electric razor and hair dryer, hair straighteners and curling irons, and my beloved Clarisonic (that thing takes 5 years off your face, I swear---and no, I'm not getting a kickback to endorse it)?
I can live without an iron because, well, I don't iron. About 3 years ago, I pulled out the ironing board and the iron, filled it with distilled water and waited for it to get good and steamy, and my bewildered then-8 year old said, "Mom, WHAT are you doing?" I explained I was ironing. He said he had never seen an iron.
There's the coffee pot. The stand up fan. There are lamps. Clock radios. Cordless telephones (do people even have phones in their homes in Spain?).
So much to think about, and it's mostly electricity.
Most of the rest is easy. I'll get the youngest in on clearing out books, toys, and clothes, and will probably have to bribe him with promises of iTunes cards or graphic novels to keep him motivated.
Because I can't focus on realty listings (we will live off base, thank you sweetbabyJesus) and buying a car (because our GTMO specials just won't get it in Spain), I am focusing on minutia. The minutia of the week is electrical voltage. I've become obsessed with flipping over everything in the house and seeing what voltage it has. So far, we will be selling and giving away a lot of things. But that's okay.
One of my first posts about life here was about digging up plants out of a random stranger's yard. His words of wisdom to me were this:
"You come here with nothing, you leave with nothing. Make sure you give everything you can away when you leave the island. It's the GTMO way. And it's just stuff---you can't take it with you when you die."
When we evacuated (and I really thought my husband, who was left behind, was going to die---but that's a whole other story I will probably never write), I took the following in a small carry-on: two almost 100 year old pictures of my grandfather and my husband's grandfather, both wrapped in my favorite scarf from my first trip to France; my (first! signed! Canadian!) edition of Margaret Atwood's A Handmaid's Tale and a copy of a book written from a man from my home town, Mr. Thomas Jefferson Young, which I gave to my parents; the Morgan dollar my grandfather gave me as a little girl that I brought with me on my maiden voyage to GTMO as a good luck charm; a small envelope of baby pictures of our oldest, which were all from film, and a handful of pictures of my grandparents, mostly in b & w and from years and years before I entered this world; a canister of every SD card and jump drive I could find in the house; the diamond drop necklace my grandparents gave me when I graduated college---the stone had been an earring my grandfather gave my grandmother for their 25th anniversary---my sister has the other one that she, too, got when she graduated college; a small picture I painted of my youngest kid on the beach and the only thing I've painted that I've truly, really liked; my stuffed rabbit named Elizabeth (after my sister---it's her middle name) that I've had since I was 4 and has been to camps, college, and even Mexico; my husband's grandfather Harvey's bible; and other than my computer/iPad, a few days worth of clothes. I didn't come close to the 40 lb limit.
Everything else was replaceable. It made me realize---it's all stuff.
|My Papaw George's gift to me---and his handwriting---|
makes this worth much more than face value.
It's become a good luck charm over the years.
I will carry it with me on our trip to Spain.