[Mostly written on] Friday morning, 7:00 ish – on a train.
I’m driving a friend across Germany today. (Friday). She’s moving house and I offered to drive the moving van for her.
I’m setting out from Berlin (North East Germany). Her new house is near Essen (West Germany), I am going to a party (the late-night/early-morning kind) in Stuttgart (South Germany) on Saturday evening and I need to be in England on Monday evening. There’s no realistically viable way to go from Stuttgart to Berlin before I fly towards England, so I’m flying directly from Stuttgart. That means packing everything for all 3 trips into one small suitcase. The kind you can take on a plane as handluggage. The kind that takes more thought to pack than the kind you put in the hold.
I have been known to enter my house, pack a suitcase and leave within half an hour. That was a long time ago and I am quite out of practice. I am also exhausted from everything else going on. I decided last week (/whenever I got back and booked the new flights, I have no track of time at the moment) I needed to leave myself longer than usual to pack and get myself ready and to sleep. The sleep part was especially important because I’ve never driven a removal van before.
That was the plan. The reality was a little bit different.
Yesterday evening (Thursday) I worked later than planned because I got in to work later than planned. I got there so late because I woke up so late, and I woke up so late because I was up so late the night before (Wednesday), working on a present for one of the people I’m going to see in Stuttgart. I didn’t get it finished because I ran out of time and so won’t be able to give it to her this visit. That means the evening wasn’t used effectively. Or at least not in the most effective way.
Back to yesterday evening.
I worked until I’d clocked up the minimum hours needed to count as a day.
Just as I wanted to go home I remembered that I hadn’t printed my boarding card(s) yet so I stopped to do that.
Just as I was finally locking up the workshop, my friend (the one who’s moving) phoned to ask if I could make her some lunch for the journey because she’d left later than planned and wasn’t going to get to a shop before they all shut.
Ok. No problem – I was going to make myself lunch anyway. She doesn’t eat what I’d been thinking of taking, so I went shopping on the way home.
Once I got home (several € later – shopping hungry is never really recommended..) I did the following:
- Washing – all the things from my last trip which I needed for the next one (had to run the machine twice because I forgot the washing powder the first time). Hung it all out, rethought and draped some of the thicker clothing on the radiators to dry
- Reheated/finished baking breadbuns (you can buy them half baked. That way they’re fresh when you want to eat then) and made sarnies (posh ones with ham and cheese and tomato puree and miniature bell peppers and basil leaves)
- Decorated and cooked 2 [frozen] pizzas, ate 1, chopped and packed the other one
- Washed and/or chopped and packed many carrots, apples, tomatoes, peppers, a kohl rabi, and a fennel (given the choice, S eats more like a rabbit than any other person I know ;))
- Packed my suitcase (except for the clothes which were still drying)
- Packed all the lunch things (fruit&veg box, sandwiches, pizza, apples, satsumas, bananas, biscuits, chocolate raisins, …) plus 4 bottles of water into a huge carrier bag. It was a picnic to do Ratty proud*
- Did the washing up
- Tidied the kitchen so I wouldn’t be embarrassed by my landlord feeding my fish.
I got loads done, but it took longer than I expected (quelle surprise) so I went to bed later than expected (not late by my standards, but not nearly as early as intended). And even though I was exhausted, it took me ages to get to sleep. That really was surprising – usually I sleep as soon as I’m horizontal.. like one of those dolls with the weighted eyes.
My colleague says there are days when gravity is stronger than other days. Today is one of those days: First I couldn’t get out of bed. Second I couldn’t carry the lunch bag.
I found a backpack for the water bottles and waddled down the stairs, laden much like a Sherpa, only much less fit/strong/capable. I dragged and lugged my suitcase and picnic bag towards the train station, stopping every few hundred metres to change hands.
The first train I managed to catch left almost 20 minutes later than the one I intended to catch. That coincides almost exactly with the 20 minutes I spent lying in bed not getting up. Funny really.
I’m now tireder than I ought to be for a drive across the country, despite the fact that I’ve known about it for a while and also aimed to get enough sleep. It seems I’m my own best saboteur…
..but at least we have a good packed lunch! 🙂
* see: Wind-in-the-Willows