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In the words of my friend Gabi, I’m freaking out. Freaking out big-time.
The boys and I leave in one week, James will follow on later, we are travelling without Dad for a while.
So, how am I spending this last part of my life in Port Douglas?
Wafting around sipping champagne and having farewell lunches?
Not quite, I’m doing a multitude of things.
See Our previous countdown posts, including ” Planning Family Travel, The First 6 Months”
Jobs to Do and Finish in The Last Week Before we Leave
Starting with going through paperwork, contacting banks, savings plans and insurance companies, changing addresses and making sure all accounts will work as we travel. This mammoth phone-athon is even more complex because I’m Down-under my banks are in the UK.
I’m packing away a lifetime of photos, scanning them first, so that, you know, if the house burns down or gets blown away in a cyclone, we’ll have a copy. Every few days I think I’ve finished and then I’ll find another box of photos tucked away and long forgotten, but still special. So out comes the scanner again. I’m going to get the best ones made into a photo book to send to my Mum and Dad.
It’s tough staying in touch with parents on the other side of the world when they’re the generation that technology forgot. They have no computer, can you believe it? I’ve sent them photo books a few times, they’ve been very impressed with the quality and it’s really easy to do online.
The photo up top is one I found and scanned today, from the Doctor Who Experience in London, they’d love to have a copy of that one.
I’m ripping music discs and putting them on the kids’ and my own, music playing gizmos. A few audiobooks and educational bits and pieces are being loaded up, too, part of my homeschooler’s instinct.
I’m trying to find someone to love my cat. Surprisingly, this isn’t as hard as you’d think. I’ve advertised online and spread the word, cat lovers are responding, which is really great news.
I’m advertising and selling what’s left of our stuff on the internet, what doesn’t sell is going into a rolling garage sale at our house this week.
I’m also packing. Actual backpack packing, that bit is quite exciting!
Don’t Be Like Me. Get Organised!
My top tips for people like me, selling their lives to travel the world:
If you have old photos scan them now. Get it done, if you leave it all to the last-minute it takes forever. Or pay one of those places that takes a big box of photos and scans them to disc. It’s pretty soul destroyingly boring.
Start selling early. I’m really glad I got rid of a lot of stuff already. It’s easier in terms of time and emotional attachment to not have everything to dispose of at the last-minute. As you start culling the stuff, each subsequent cull becomes easier ’till you get to the point where you’re whooping for joy as you hand over treasures in exchange for cash. Starting early gave me time to get better prices for things.
Stop procrastinating and sort out your paperwork. My life would be so much easier if I’d contacted my banks weeks ago to start the ball rolling, doing it all in the last few days is a pain.
Have some sort of packing plan. I’ve suffered from packing anxiety in the past. On this occasion, I’m absolutely fine, I’ve been sharing my packing thoughts with the world for months, blogging has cured me. So, thanks, if you read as I rambled on about how many pairs of jeans I was taking ( two, for the record) or stuck with me as I talked underwear. I’m fine, really, with the packing. I’m taking what I’ve got and if I need anything I’ll buy it there, easy!
Have an amazing husband who’ll tie up the loose ends as you fly off to new adventures. What a top bloke I’ve got. Eternal gratitude to “Chef“, best husband in the world. He’s renting the house, selling the car, doing the things that I don’t want the kids to be here for, like the cat and their bikes. We’ll be giving him the best welcome in Malaysia.
Garage sales don’t need to be on a Saturday. If you’ve got time, try starting your sale mid-week, we had a nicer class of shopper today when we tried, they bought more and paid more. It was a much better experience that the Saturday morning mosh pit.
We are thinking of heading to Cambodia, certainly Thailand and Vietnam, hopefully Nepal, maybe my dream destination, Bhutan! This is very exciting and big and scary. So, lovely people, the boys and I are off in our TARDIS ( I wish!), I’ll check in with you all soon, wish us luck!