Our living room mostly packed.
So it’s been kind of a rough week! PACKOUT: First of all, we had our HHE packed out on Monday and Tuesday. It was fairly uneventful, barring the fact that they were 30 minutes late and sent three guys instead of the four they’d said were coming. But they still managed to get it all done in two days. They’re coming back next week to collect the UAB.
The annoying part is that we supposedly have 7,100 lbs worth of stuff. We are only allowed 7,200. So all the items we were planning to get out of storage and all the supplies we were planning to buy for Iceland on home leave…are now obsolete, because we would be over our shipping allowance and have to pay for international shipping out of pocket, which we can’t afford.
The really curious thing though is that we only had 5,000 lbs of stuff when we packed out of our four-bedroom HOUSE in Belize. And we got rid of quite a bit more after we got to London and realized we had no space for it in our comparatively little apartment. Yet somehow we’ve supposedly acquired an EXTRA 2,000 POUNDS. I might have to call bullshit on that one.
DAMAGES: We also had to pay $200 in damages for various bits of government furniture for the first time (scratches on dressers, etc). But I suppose it could’ve been worse.
OAKWOOD: We have stayed at the Oakwood corporate housing properties twice during training. The first time we were there for about two months and got a two-bedroom apartment. The second time, we were there for a month, were told that there were no two-bedrooms available and squeezed into a one-bedroom where our son slept in a crib in the living room. This time we’re going to be there for less than a week but again were told we’d be in a one-bedroom.
We put our housing request in back in February. So I spent a couple days going back and forth with them because I couldn’t believe that there was not a single two-bedroom available in the half dozen properties in the DC metro area when we’ve given them almost six months’ notice.
And then they gave me the long and short of it. They prioritize according to family size, length of stay…and I would guess pay grade, even though they didn’t say it. So basically we will never get what we want unless they have no one else to give it to. Another reminder of the lovely government hierarchy.
KID: And our son is not handling the changes well. He was two the last time we moved and didn’t seem to care. This time, he’s almost five and is on an emotional rollercoaster. He doesn’t seem particularly worried that he’s leaving nursery and all his friends (and is quite excited about moving on to big boy school).
But he’s acting out in other ways. The first day he came home after the movers had left, he realized the TV was gone and burst into tears. I’d like to think it was just an outlet and that he’s not actually emotionally attached to the television, but who knows.
Every night since then he’s come into our bedroom once in the middle of the night, and again around 5am. At that point I can no longer sleep since I have to be up at 6:30, so I usually let him crawl in with us. Both mornings I got out of bed before he did, and he was completely irate that I’d left him there sleeping…even though his daddy was crashed out next to him. I’ve done that many times in the past, and it was no big deal. I know he’s stressed, so I’m trying to be patient with him. But I’m stressed too!!
CAT: Yesterday, I took the cat for her third and final vet visit, but she knew it was coming this time and clawed the crap out of me. Then they gave me the bill, which came to almost $500 USD for three visits. Maybe it’s better that we’re no longer buying a bunch of supplies in the States!
And then somewhere on the 15-item checklist on “how to import your cat to Iceland,” I missed two little words. They wanted copies of her paperwork “at least” 5 days before she arrived. I’d gotten it in my head that it was “within” 5 days before she arrived. Just like her health certificate has to be “within” 10 days before she arrived. So yesterday I received a nice email from the Food and Vet Authority saying that I’d missed the deadline, and the cat was no longer going to be allowed into the country.
That’s about the time that I completely fell apart and started crying at my desk.
All that work!!! All that money!! I couldn’t even blame it on the vet strike. I had f*d it up all on my own!! So I had a good cry, then sent them the paperwork and a pathetic email. And…happily…they accepted my late documents and approved her import. Still keeping our fingers crossed that the vets don’t go back on strike on July 1.
So, yes, I am officially ready for home leave and a much-needed vacation…and a COLOSSAL margarita from some awesome Mexican restaurant in Arizona. And I promise that someday soon I will again post something fun and upbeat on this blog. :)