June 8th “Let the games begin”

sorry got to do this one befoer it goes cold on me, I will comment on the flight home which was interesting sometime tomorrow “honest”

So it is now 7 am on Monday morning, Eric the cat has been trying to get us up since 4:30 am and we actually got up at 5:30 am as Judi had a conf call at 6 am (I’m not missing that sort of thing). We arrived in Atlanta at around 4:10 yeterday and despite being first in the queue for customer clearance and our bag waiting for us it still took an hour to get through into the fresh air. 11 hour flight and almost no sleep. (I will comment on the trip tomorrow)

OK the call is done now onto the insurance valuation of the items we are sending by air freight. Easy you might think but what value do you put on that “Shiva” ornament we bought in some little French backwater village in 2001 for 30 euro’s. So it becomes a sort of “the price is right” game where we chose a number and move on. We also have to have the discussion about exactly “why” we are taking that thing and not the other thing but we don’t argue on this we just plod along. 15 minutes and we have the valuation complete. On the one hand thoughts swing between have we packed enough against are we packing too much. Well it is what it is and we can replace almost anything we leave behind.

I had the enviable task of transferring the official files, Tax, bills, credit card notes, etc into new box’s as we are good at keeping all this sort of stuff sort of organized. However in Russia Judi says responsibility will transfer to me (so the filing system will get an overhaul for sure).

The “crew” arrives around 9 am and we show them all the stuff. It is piled onto the dining room table and spilling out into the hallway. Not sure exactly how the process works as we have two air containers but they are not here so everything will be put into box’s and then put into other bigger box’s. “Will they fit” is of course the thought. Anyway Judi puts me in charge and takes the car off to work.

It really does not take long for the team to convert all the mish mash into organized cardboard items and given their driver has gone off with the van by 10 am they are looking for work. “Can we pack the basement please” is the question. “Sure” say and show them everything which needs to go. “Let’s be clear” I say this is for storage not airfreight. The last thing I need is to find all this stuff turning up in the apartment we have just rented. Against the house we are in it is miniscule.

11:30 “is there anything we can pack upstairs Mr Bailwei”. Fine I show them the spare bedroom and another room which we never got around to naming. I tell them to keep out of T5 which gets puzzled looks. Well I know T5 is a reference to the Heathrow terminal which opened up to great fanfare and a lot of consternation as luggage went in but often failed to come out. So T5 is named because that is where we store all our luggage cases along with other items which are essential but not often actually needed.

I decide after all the work on the insurance form I had better print it off so 20 minutes later I have the 3 pages. Not sure why it took so long but it did. I sign them and place them on the now empty table. At this point I notice the labels “Bailwie Rosewell to Russia”. I had put down the way they were calling my name to the southern drawl and not an actual correct pronunciation of a miss spelt name.

Ok Ok all stop. I explain this is wrong and given all the airfreight has now gone I need to get them to focus on this. All of the box’s need to be relabeled and of course none of them are here. Given the amount of red tape and the forms you have to fill in then a basic thing like the name does not match is enough to send our possessions to some cosmic black hole that even the best that Star Trek could offer could not bring them back. There is a golden rule “you don’t mess with customs people” ever ever ever ever ever. Now they tell me there is room for my bike and the golf clubs after all so time to redo the forms (3rd time)

Note to self remind them again when they leave about the name. I do hope the van comes back soon though as I think they are looking to pack more things and we still need to live here for another 2 weeks. Not seen the cat for a while but trying to keep that thought in the back of my mind for as long as possible.