Our container finally made it to Point B!
Ha, ha, ha…. Sometimes you just have to laugh! How did I think it would be any different for us? I guess it’s just one of those things that you hear about, but never believe it can happen to you. Everyone I know who has moved here, and especially those who have written or blogged about their experience, has wished us good luck with the “French red tape”. It’s basically a seemingly endless Catch 22. I’m choosing to remain positive, and believe that by the end of August it will all be worked out.
For the moment we are living at my sister and brother-in-law’s house while they’re away on vacation, so it’s really nice to have some extra time to finish up paperwork and get our apartment cleaned up and fixed up the way we want it. As you can see in the picture below, it’s not such a bad place to be spending the month of August. The only thing is that it is out in the countryside, and it’s not really possible to get a good Internet connection. I’m so looking forward to getting the Internet set up at the apartment so that we can easily go there to get some work done.
Here’s some exciting news! A young English woman who is living in Barcelona teaching English and studying French and travel journalism at the same time found my blog and Love Learning French Facebook page, and she’ll be in Béziers this weekend. She’s asked me to give her a few hours of immersion classes around and about town on Friday and Saturday. I’m really, really looking forward to doing that, so fun!
It’s been a lot harder to keep up with blogging this month than I thought it would be. Working in Montpellier for five weeks, about 70-80 hours a week, and with only three days off doesn’t sound very French! I love it here though, and I’m really happy to have the experience. All of the people I work with are fantastic, and the students are great as well. I didn’t know I’d be the only anglophone working here, but that’s also been good for me.
François and the kids are in Béziers, and have been there for a few weeks. I’ll join them once and for all on August 1, but in the meantime our container has arrived in Marseilles! It should be in Béziers on Thursday, so now we’re just looking for some people to help us unload it. It’s a bit of a challenge, and since I’m not there to help it makes it a little difficult for François, but somehow it will all come together 🙂
That’s it for the little update, back to work! After August 1, I’ll post more frequently and keep everyone up to date on our new life in Béziers. I’m so excited to have our things and start unpacking boxes. It’s been a long road, but now we’re almost there!
20 Foot Container…We Need A Miracle to Make it all Fit!!
This may look like a lot of stuff, but let me tell you, this is only the beginning! As we carefully packed, bubble wrapped, shrink wrapped, numbered and inventoried every single item in our house, the total number of items came out to 203. The sofa counts as 1 item just like a trashcan does, so you have to consider that. It’s been one heck of a week trying to get all of this done by today, Friday. François and I ended up going to bed at about 3:00 in the morning, deciding to wake up early to finish up the rest before the movers would arrive.
When the team of three movers arrived, they took one look at all, and first told us that it’s “the best wrapping we’ve ever seen.” I asked if I could quote them 🙂 But then they told us that in their opinion there’s “no way that’s gonna fit in a 20-foot container, so you should start to consider what you would like to leave behind.” What??? That’s not what they told us when we reserved this thing! After about fifteen minutes of real stress, mostly from my sweetie, I went out and had a look at the container. The thing is huge. As of right now, the movers are still here and trying to load it all up. I’ve decided to remain optimistic (is this a trend?) and believe it will all work out. I’ll keep you posted, but for now I’m sitting here on my living room floor blogging away while I watch them try to fit the sofa through the front door. This is the first time we’ve ever had movers do the work for us, and I would highly recommend it. I can’t help thinking about when our container arrives in France and we have to unload it without a crew. Every time I packed a box, I imagined that the next time I would see our things would be in our new apartment in Béziers. By the way, we decided on the first apartment!!! We listened to what all of you said, and took the plunge.
I’ll stop writing now so that I can go and see the progress, but for now, everyone repeat after us:
“We believe it’s all going to fit!!”
If you’ve even started to read this post, I’ll assume you’re willing to maybe give me a little advice. As the title suggests, it’s mostly for people who have had the experience of moving abroad. However, I would sure like to know how you all feel about this.
Last summer (when we THOUGHT we were moving to France, but it didn’t work out: Putting France on Hold…. Hanging in there in St. Louis), we reserved a 20-foot container: What we’re going to put in our 20-foot container . We put down a deposit, and it will be applied toward our balance even a year later (it doesn’t expire). The problem is that it is still going to be very, very expensive.
Now we are just wondering if we really need a 20 foot private container. Would a shared container be enough? It sure would be a lot cheaper. If we shared one instead, we would have to be very selective with what we bring, and we hadn’t planned on that.
Here’s the big question:
Should we bring less (and pay less), ultimately having to purchase a lot of what we will need once in France?
Should we pay more and have pretty much everything we will need to set up house?
Please tell me what you think. It’s a hard decision to make on our own, so I’m depending on you 🙂
Here’s a short list of what we were planning to bring: What we’re going to put in our 20-foot container .