This was our last year in Switzerland.
We have known for some time that we would be moving next year, and I must admit that I have put off blogging about it. Maybe in the hope that by not writing about it, it wouldn’t happen.
Now that the moving date is set, I can no longer avoid the truth.
The removal men will arrive the last week of February and pack up our belongings, which will initially go into storage until we find a house in our final destination. My husband is being moved to the Munich office, but the children and I are going to Scotland for a few months, until we have a house and school sorted. So we shall not only move house, but I will move back home to my parents, and begin a weekend expat marriage – two things that I have always said I would never do.
Given the circumstances, this is the best option for us at present so we shall make the most out of it.
I admit that I am looking forward to living in Scotland again, and the children are delighted that we shall stay with their beloved grandparents, and see their cousins weekly (if not daily!).
We have already started sorting and packing, throwing out and cleaning. The Swiss landlords have a fearsome reputation; we have heard stories of white cotton glove wearing landlords checking door frames and skirting boards for dust. In preparation for this, I have purchased a steam cleaner and am steaming and cleaning the floors.
Anyone who has moved house a couple of times knows how ruthless you have to be when it comes to de-cluttering. When I realised that some of the boxes in our cellar hadn’t even been unpacked in the last two moves, I knew it was time to have a good clear out. One of the most difficult things has been the children’s artwork. We still have a couple of huge boxes, and I desperately need to cut it down. The current plan is to buy a couple of large scrapbooks and do some kind of collage. If I can find large scrapbooks.
Our final weeks are going to be busy, as we try to squeeze in one last visit to favourite place, and perhaps even see areas of Switzerland we haven’t visited yet. On the list is Cern, Chateaux d’Oex (for the hot air balloon festival at the end of January), Gstaad, a boat trip on the lake (no, really. We have not done this yet), Neuchâtel.. and some other places.
As ever, I am finding myself looking back on the things that we missed. Montreux Jazz Festival, the cows coming down from the Alps – festivals that we always said, “We will have time next year”, and now never will see.
During the coming weeks, accompany me as I say a long adieu to Switzerland, and I highlight the best of this stunning country which has played host to our family for the past three years.
And if you have any great tips for cleaning floors and walls, do let me know…