They say that moving house is one of life's most stressful events. I had forgotten all that as our last move merely necessitated getting rid of surplus furniture and trotting up to the bungalow we'd had for some years. As we lived in a house provided by the job, the bungalow served as a bolt hole and holiday home, so was pretty well furnished for our comfort.
When I retired from my post as a country priest, we moved from the rectory to the bungalow full time. OK, it required a good deal of down-sizing, but with six country parishes all holding jumble sales and fetes from time to time, it was relatively easy to hand over much of our surplus. The bigger furniture went to charity shops, and we hunkered down in our little bungalow for four years. Not at all stressful.
Not that they were idle years. I quickly discovered the old maxim 'Once a priest, always a priest' to be true, and spent many happy hours helping and enabling worship in various different churches.
Then out of the blue came a new call - for a return to duty as a part-time priest-in-charge of one parish. Along with the post came a house, so we began to sort out accumulated rubbish in the bungalow prior to moving into the much larger house.
We also discovered we needed to up-size again, so it was off to the self-same charity shops to buy back necessary furniture.
This time we had the removers pack all our belongings, and an excellent job they made of it too. Unfortunately they don't unpack at the other end, so there we were late on Tuesday evening in our new home, surrounded by packing cases in every direction.
A week later and we're slowly getting straight, but it's a major task, and if we want to get it right first time (I can't do all this shifting about again, I really can't!) then we need to work at a much slower pace than I would like. Being one of those impatient types, I want it all perfect yesterday. Fortunately Ian has a brain as well as a head, so he forces me to slow down.
I'm left with just one puzzling question. When we've moved from a much smaller bungalow into a much larger house, how come all this stuff won't fit in? No wonder moving house is so stressful!