It’s been a very stressful last week of the countdown. It started in glorious fashion on Monday, when it suddently occurred to me that I hadn’t yet slotted all the cards I need to take with me into the card shaped slot in my bumbag. That’s right, I wear a bumbag, don’t @ me as the kids might say.
It not only looks impressive, manly and attractive, it is very practical too.
So I selected the relevant credit cards and went to add my driving licence to the collection. Hmm, it’s not in my wallet I thought, as I discovered it wasn’t in my wallet. A mild dew of sweat gathered on my forehead.
Not to worry. Last time I saw it, it was in that thing in our bedroom. Trouble is, since then our bedroom has been through a total rebuild and everything in it was scattered to the four winds for the duration. Most of it has never returned.
A moist half hour followed as I barrelled around the house doing my “man looking” for it and getting increasingly agitated. After exhausting every possible location, I decided I could waste no further time and had to apply for a replacment. A few minutes online and I was done and £20 lighter. I’d also applied for a new licence.
Seconds after hitting submit, I thought, I’ll just check “there”. There being under Rebecca’s bed in what is now our spare room/junk store/bomb site. Oh look, there’s that container thing my licence used to be in before we destroyed and reconstructed the bedroom. I pulled it out, but there was no time for that, so I put it away and had a look in the container instead.
Yep, there it was. Thank goodness. I quickly called the DVLA folks and explained that a mere sixty seconds ago I had hit submit on an application for a new licence, and that I had since found my current one and they could cancel that application.
Apparently the computer said no, and my application was now “in the system” and could not be stopped. How sad that there is an all powerful, omnipresent, sentient, undeniable force at work at DVLA that cannot be accessed or influenced by mere human beings. OK, no problem, I’ll just take my existing one that I just found and use that.
Nope. I was told that was now an ex-driving licence and would be no use to me unless I intended to use it as an ice scraper come the winter. I would need to wait for my new one and use that.
I enquired when that might be. “Within two weeks”, was the reply.
How I laughed. With further questioning, it appears that typically it takes 3-5 days so we should be fine, but the fear was real because if that thing didn’t arrive before we left, Louise would be driving for the full two weeks and that would be fun.
It’s amazing that no matter how long the countdown is I can leave myelf exposed to such muppetry. If only we’d done these trips before and I knew what I was doing.
Anyway, it arrived on Thursday and that particular panic could be called off.
Alongside that specific bit of nonsense has been a general feeling of anxiety and a sense that there a million things that need doing and time is fast running out. Louise’s passport wasn’t where it should be which added to the moist brow. Apparently it was in her car which of course is a very sensible place to store such an important document.
Work was annoying too. My plan to spend next Tuesday working at home was scuppered with the appearance in my diary of a handful of meetings I have to be in the office for, so that hasn’t helped. Every year this shit must happen but like childbirth, I completely forget the stresses of the final few days and getting everything in order and stumble blindly into it every single time.
Decelerating from the pace of working life and the hectic preparations is something that I will need to do quickly as I drive home from work on Tuesday if I am not to waste the few few days adjusting to be in holiday mode.
Louise is working all weekend, so I have been spending my time alone ticking off all the tasks I had been stressting about all week. Inexplicably that included some decorating as I finished some painting Louise started some months ago in the spare room, and very unsually for her (not) hadn’t finished. Our dog sitting guests will be staying in that room so it was only right I made it habitableish.
I have washed lots of things including the dog’s beds and rugs (they have a fine collection), ordered and had delivered the shopping for the dogs, cat and dog sitters for our time away and washed and curated my collection of designer wear for our trip. I have of course planned and co-ordinated all my outfits day by day so you can rest assured I will be rocking “the Gram” for the entire trip, so keep your eye on my acount.
So, one day in the office aside, we’ve made it. The counting down is done, the planning complete, and the waiting is almost over. If nothing else you all get a couple of Sundays off from me moaning here, and hopefully you will be joining us at various points on the trip as I share stuff online.
So away we go, and I’ll see you on the other side, back here, sometime in September.
Till the next time…….