We’re closing on our new house today. And, unless anything truly catastrophic goes wrong between now and then, we’re moving in tomorrow. This is really happening, people.
I guess this is the moment when the sale/purchase should feel final to me, but actually, I think I reached that point quite some time ago. Ever since our house has been on the market, I’ve been feeling like it wasn’t really OURS any more: that our days here were numbered (Which they were, of course: we just didn’t know what the number was at the time. And now we do: the number is ONE, and oh my holy hell, that’s a very small number…) and that our life here was just a temporary thing, which would soon be gone forever. That feeling has only intensified since the ‘SOLD’ sign went up, of course, and as we walked around the new house at our viewing last Saturday, I started to get these weird flashes of our current house coming into my head, almost as if I was looking at old photographs.
The odd thing was that when I tried to picture it properly, it really felt like it WAS a photo I was looking at, rather than a proper memory, and I started to feel strange and slightly panicky, feeling like it was already slipping away from me, and I was starting to forget. Which was particularly stupid of me given that we were, you know, still actually living there at the time, huh? It was that feeling of nostalgia for something that’s still actually happening, and when we arrived back home a few hours later, I was almost surprised to find that the old house was still there. I felt guilty, as if I’d had been cheating on it, and that the house would know, and would metaphorically turn its back on me and storm off to go listen to Taylor Swift and scribble in its journal about how awful I am. And I really wouldn’t blame it.
Since then, everything has felt very surreal and dreamlike and I keep jerking awake in the night, filled with panic at the thought that although this place will go on existing without me, it really WILL be just a memory, and a selection of faded old photographs. In the meantime, however, there’s been the packing to occupy me, and also the shopping for the new house, which is MUCH more fun.
Speaking of the new house, the good news is that, having had the chance to have another good look around it, we still love it. Phew! Would’ve been awkward if we hadn’t, wouldn’t it? There’s a little more work to do there than we’d anticipated, unfortunately… One of the things that appealed to us about this house was that it was the perfect blank canvas: all of the décor was totally neutral, and while I know magnolia walls aren’t the most exciting thing in the world ever, at least they’re easy to live with while you work out how you want to put your own stamp on them. When we moved into this house, for instance, we had to spend literally WEEKS scraping hideous wallpaper off every single wall in the house, then fixing the destroyed walls and painting them. “We’re never doing THAT again!” we said when it was done, so naturally when we got into the new house on Saturday, we discovered that at some point between our last viewing and this one, the tenants had decided to put wallpaper on one of the walls in the living room: gah!
Luckily it’s only the one wall, so it shouldn’t be too difficult to get rid of (I hope), but the paper in question is REALLY not to our taste, so it’ll have to come down ASAP. We also found that the garden, which was ALSO pretty much a blank canvas when we last saw it (The house is a fairly new construction, and the garden had never been developed, which suited us fine, as we hate gardening, and wanted something as low-maintenance as possible: this way we would be able to do what we wanted with it, without having to dig up lawns or anything like that first), is now an overgrown jungle of a place, which Rubin will get instantly lost in, and which is going to need a lot of work right away. (As well as a fence to stop Rubin escaping on day 1…)
Still, all of this is fairly small stuff in the great scheme of things, and happily there were no other surprises, so we’re hoping things will go as smoothly as possible on Friday. Oh, and there is one thing that will help with the organisation and unpacking, because remember that post I wrote about how the new house has hardly any attic space, which was brilliant, because it would force us to become super-organised people, who TOTALLY wouldn’t just stuff things in the attic and then forget about them? Well, that turned out to be a complete lie, because it turns out the attic is actually much larger than we thought: Hoarders, here we come!
Anyway. Assuming everything goes to plan, tomorrow we’ll load up the van, lock the door behind us, and be on our way. The end of an era, and the start of a new one: a bittersweet feeling. The internet at the new house is supposed to being connected tomorrow, but it took no less than seven phonecalls to/arguments with BT to extract that particular promise out of them, so let’s just say I’m not holding my breath.
Wish us luck…