We are moving into our new flat. I can stop writing things like “temp-flat”, and starts writing “home” like a normal person. We are going to have our own home after a year of drifting around the world! We were, and are, so excited about it. It is not that I didn’t like the drifting, I did. When it was part of the big-trip. When it was all exciting and adventurous. Drifting right now, while just living “a normal life” in one country, is a totally different thing. It is an annoying thing. Having a home to decorate and furnish and call our own is a welcomed change. No more suitcases, or bags, or boxes.
You’d think it was easy, after all we rented a furnished flat (my favourite kind), and we only came in to Malta with 5 huge suitcases, a guitar, a carry-on and four backpacks. But after four weeks of living in the temp-flat we had to repack all of them, add all the food, appliances, accessories and extras we bought, and somehow make it all fit for one ride in a taxi (a taxi-van. It didn’t fit in a regular one even before all the extras). And have it all done by 1pm, because that is when the cleaners finish what they refused to call “first time clean” so was now called “Spring clean”.
They were only 40 minutes late in arriving, so we felt extremely lucky (well I didn’t care because I was at the temp-flat packing and Hidai was waiting for them, which made him late for work so maybe he didn’t feel so lucky), which meant we had time for some hipster-sandwiches (everything was packed and I didn’t have food for the kids) and for collecting all the packages Hidai hid from Ron in his office (we told him it’s cool stuff like Chia seeds and an ADHD cushion for Yon – he loves them – and not his precious birthday xBox. It was a fib. It was both. but he got really upset and Hidai broke down first and promised him it is there). We also got the delivery of our new balcony chairs (the driver had an accident and arrived 3 hours late, but he did, and we are now the owners of two balcony chairs no one can sit on because the balcony isn’t ready yet), and got back to the temp-flat just in time to get all our things downstairs and in to the taxi. The driver did not like us at all. He was not very appreciative about us putting everything in his van, and charged us extra because it was “a house move”. Fine. We were planning on tipping him, so it ended up being the same. Only without a five stars review.
It took three elevator rides to get everything down from the temp-flat, and 10 trips on the stairs to get it all up to the new flat. I was really surprised and delighted at how the kids both helped carrying everything, and also organising their room. I guess the whole “home” thing was a big deal for them too. Yon did say he expects another big trip in the near future, but honestly I think he was happy to have a constant home in his life.
At 9pm as we were just sitting down for a pizza dinner from our new local pizza (which only takes cash, works only in the evenings, doesn’t even offer garlic bread, and puts peas on the veggie pizza), the food shopping (hey only half an hour late after the two hour window) arrived and was really not a happy camper about getting it all up the two floors so Hidai went downstairs to help him, and then it hit me – I’ve been working on organising my tiny kitchen for three hours, only to have to find room for all the new food I just bought.
But I am happy to say that at 11pm on Friday all suitcases, boxes and bags were empty, folded and put aside. We have a home.
Well, home needed some improvements, like a night light, and energy-saving bulbs, and a screwdriver so Hidai could assemble some pans for me. Yeah, I bought some pots and pans, and for some reason they all arrived without handles, or lids, and Hidai needed to assemble the whole thing. I promised him it’s the last time I buy pots and pans online. We were too buzzed to take it easy, so after some coffee and Belvita (I adore choc-chip soft bake Belvita), and getting rid of all our empty boxes, we set out to find all our missing pieces.
We decided to go to Sliema through Gzira, just because that is where we feel like we know where things are, and our first stop was a furniture shop next to us on the way. We were waiting to cross the road when I suddenly spotted a hidden hairdresser salon. The kids really needed a haircut. Especially, like I told Hidai, because my parents are coming on Sunday and we can not photograph them in their current hair-state. It’s a local hairdresser, so everyone talked Maltese above our heads, but they agreed to cut the kids’ hair, for the unbelievable price of 5 euros each (even in Berlin we paid like 3 times that).
It was a really good start, which lead to the successful purchase of a hammer, nails, a screwdriver, 2 night-lights, and a step-stool. Everything a person needs. And a cute magnet-board, which led me to the thought about how there are some things that I simply don’t let myself buy. I can buy mugs. I have about two hundreds mugs coming from Berlin (I really don’t. Hidai made me purge before we packed) but I can still buy some more given the chance (I am not given the chance. Hidai is the anti-mug), but for some reason I can never excuse a really cute pillow, or a new magnet-board, or an 8 Euros dog shaped door-stopper. They all look like an “unnecessary waste of money”. Unlike, say, mugs. Part of it is my unending and unchanging fear of not having enough money to buy things (regardless of how true it is at that particular moment in time, I am always worried sick when I get to the cashier that my credit card won’t go through), and part of it is the “you don’t deserve to be spoiled” thought. Deservedly or not, being kind to myself is not a thing I practice often. I ended up looking at this magnet board at the Next-Home shop for twenty minutes, and I couldn’t bring myself to say that yes, I know we don’t really need it, but I hate the one we have coming from Berlin, which we got 4 years ago and I hated ever since day one, and I really want a new one. A whole 12 Euros worth of a new magnet board. Because it’s cute. And the funny thing is, that had one of the kids said they wanted it, or if it was Hidai, I wouldn’t even blink before it would have gone into the bag.
Of course we got it. Hidai is even cuter than the magnet board.
And he also assembled all my pans.