If It Was Easy, More People Would Do It

As of late, the blogging has been light here at Honest Errors because planning and executing a trans-Atlantic move (even a temporary one) requires a lot of attention. As we have prepared for our move to Istanbul, the credit cards are getting a workout, budgeting has become an exercise in hard numbers coupled with many wild-ass guesses, and bank accounts are getting juggled.

We’re renting out our home. (We can’t afford to simply close it up for 10 months.) Renting sounded simple enough but then we realized that we had to make it hospitable to people who are not us. So…

  • We needed to paint the kids’ bedrooms to cover up all the spontaneous artwork scribbled on the walls in marker, crayon, or pen. This also entailed removing wallpaper borders.
  • We needed to paint the study/guest bedroom. This also entailed removing wallpaper borders.
  • We needed to paint the kitchen and breakfast area. This also entailed removing wallpaper borders. (Are you detecting a theme? A previous owner of our house REALLY liked wallpaper borders, a lot.)
  • The towel rack in the downstairs bathroom was nearly falling out of the wall thanks to the way the kids yanked at it.
  • The ceiling fan in our bedroom needed to be replaced because it only spun at the highest speed.
  • The timer on the dryer stopped working over a year and half ago, meaning that when you put clothes in to dry, it would just keep going until you opened the dryer door. So that had to be fixed along with the washer because it had stopped dispensing fabric softener.

That’s just the Home Improvement stuff. We did buy our plane tickets and we have our visas. Though we still need to pack for storage and the handful of things we’ll be able to fit in our suitcases. Many donations to both Goodwill and the local garbage collector have been made to smooth this process.

We still need to sell one of our two cars (First World Problem and there is an ad on Craigslist) not just because we were thinking of getting a new one, but also because it’s expensive to pay to insure two cars in Michigan, especially when you will not be driving either of them. (It did not cost us much less in MI than it did in LA to insure two cars. Not everything is so cheap here.)

Most of these things have already been accomplished. And there are still a handful of things that have yet to be done; mostly packing and cleaning, signing the lease on an apartment in Istanbul, and getting our kids placed in a school. This last one has become an ordeal. Not because of the school, but because of UPS in Istanbul (more on that another day). Apparently, UPS does not run the tightest ship in the shipping business in Turkey.

One major thing I still need to do is learn some Turkish.

I’ve been dutifully doing a lesson via Pimsleur every day now for nearly a month. Trying to repeat those “uuoo”s and “eehhs,” along with all those swallowed and rolled r’s, is stretching my mouth. I’m trying very hard to make the Turkish phrase for “See you tomorrow!” which is “Yarın görüşürüz” not sound like “URINE GURU SHOES!”

Our flight leaves on the 26th. There’s still time to learn some Turkish and do everything else, right?