the final touches
I presumed the weeks before we hit the road would be a flurry of anxiety-induced activity but in all honesty, it’s quite the opposite.
We’re navigating these prep days with a slow and steady pace. And while we intended to leave the last week of July, it looks like we’ll be heading off in about 10 days time which in the scheme of things will not make one iota of difference to the next year of travel.
Lesson number one: let go of time restraints because this year does not have a timetable.
What a strange realisation to have; that I don’t need to rush for the school bell or make any solid plans. It is very odd and somewhat freeing. Actually, it’s so freeing that I have to constantly remind myself that no, I haven’t forgotten something and I don’t need to be anywhere.
We’re just about finished work on the caravan (I say we when in actual fact Daniel has done the majority of the work and I’ve made tea, offered my two cents worth and generally encouraged when needed).
We could have easily left it as is but it’s our home now and personalising it felt like the very best thing to do. So, with tiles on the kitchen splash-back (stick-on tiles that worked a treat), fresh paint in the bedrooms (which was an arduous task considering caravan walls are laminate), new lamps (with USB sockets) and many, many small adjustments that have been completed to perfection (thanks to the Virgo), tomorrow we’ll start packing it.
This is the really exciting part, where we figure out what goes where or, more precisely, what fits where. Everything needs to be simplified – our wardrobes, bathroom products, kitchen utensils…even the contents of our fridge (it’s time to significantly reduce the sheer number of sauces, chutneys and salsas that currently live on the top shelf).
And to be honest with you, I think I’m in denial about just how much we can fit in the van. Because even if it fits, we need to be really conscious of the weight of everything we carry. Generally, the more weight we tow, the more diesel we use. Diesel will be one of our biggest expenses on this trip so we want to travel as lightly as possible so we can travel as cheaply as possible.
As Daniel says: “Everything must have two uses.”
So for the next few days we’ll pack the van, finish last minute to-dos, clear the furniture out of the house. Yep, all the big things. With four kids in tow.
But…we’re almost there. And we are so ready!