A Booklover Moves House

The house movers are not impressed.

When we booked, we told them the move was for essential items and it wouldn’t take long. But, two hours in, it appears the problem is my definition of essential items. Namely, the boxes of books.

They were thinking essentials meant bed, sofa, washer, dryer; I was thinking Rough Guides, Bryson’s, Carey and Miller. I mean, what use is a sofa if you have nothing to read while sitting on it?

The movers are giving me The Look. It’s a hot humid day here in Sydney, and they’d rather be having a cold beer somewhere. They assumed they were done when they shunted over the last of our furniture.  After all, it’s clear we’re not moving our clothes or crockery today, none of those items are boxed. But the books are.

Surely, I can see them think, cooking and clothing yourself is more important than sending on books. What sort of madwoman would insist on sending a cook book (my deliciously new copy of the Australian Women’s Weekly Slow Cooking Cookbook for those of you wondering) before the cooking pots?

Um. This sort of madwoman, I guess. You know you have a book problem when you set up the bookcase before the bed linen. I know I’m not the only one out there this attached to my books. But looking into the aghast faces of the movers, I feel like I have committed a moving faux pas, akin to trying to high five the Queen or asking why there is beetroot in my burger.

Perhaps, as is my usual habit when I need to do something, I should have read up on it. There are plenty of books out there on moving home, but the closest I came to reading them was giggling at a Michael Bond’s Olga Moves House. This was a great read, but as it is a children’s book it wasn’t hugely helpful. Olga is a feisty guinea pig who, despite her immaculate taste, is more likely to shred a book to sleep in rather than read it. What would Olga do when confronted by reluctant and confused movers? Something involving high pitched squeaking, no doubt.

I decide to pass on that, and offer the movers a cool drink and some extra money. That seems to do the trick.

When the movers finally finish, the place is a mess. There are empty boxes and upturned furniture everywhere, bags and boxes strewn all over every surface. But the bookcase is been set up, all full of my favourite books. It’s going to take days to get the place set up and tidied, but one tiny corner of the flat looks like home.

Welcome to a booklover’s new place. Just like my new home, this blog is at the moving-in stage. There’s still a lot of clutter, and I’m not quite sure where everything goes, but I hope that this blog will embrace all that is great about being a booklover, and particularly how books can inform and as well as entertain.

This blog is called Read Up On It and, as the title suggests, it’s all about real life reading. I’d like to share and hear stories of being inspired by books, of exploring non-fiction, how-to’s and travelogues. I’ll be writing on the serious stuff, such as getting the best from business and motivational texts, as well as the simple joys of curling up with a good book.

I’d love to hear from you too. If anyone else out there has tortured their movers with books, please do let me know!

This blog, I hope, will be a celebration of reading, a conversation with other booklovers and a light-hearted look at being a bibliophile. Thanks for dropping by, and I’m looking forward to having you over again.

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Sadhbh Warren

Sadhbh Warren is a freelance writer and proud booklover. Her name is pronounced Sive - like five – an Irish name, easier to say than spell! She lives in Sydney, writing travel and humour articles, and is always on the lookout for a great new book.

12 thoughts on “A Booklover Moves House”

  1. I know how you feel.
    It killed me to leave all my books behind when I left Melbourne; I have to arrange a day to come get them and my Pyrex baking dishes over Noctis.
    I miss the books the most, though.

    P.

    1. I still have about 7 boxes of books in my parent’s place in Ireland that I have forbidden them to throw out. Perhaps we should get a boat and go get them all? Jen, we could come visit you on the way!

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  3. Hehe! I don’t think I would have moved overseas if I couldn’t have taken my books with me … and my partner’s books, many of which I still haven’t read (but of course fully intend to read one of these days …).

  4. Nice post, Sadhbh. I agree wholeheartedly with your priorities. I lost more than half of my books in a break-up a while back and have never really recovered. Next time, a pre-nup will be in order solely for book possession.

    1. Hi Joel, I have an entry coming up on the need for a book pre-nup, I must have bought and lost my favourite books at least four times over my relationships!

  5. Liked this post. Definitely agree that book lovers are the same when it comes to the ‘essentials’ when moving house. As long as the library’s set up on arrival, I can live out of boxes for 6 months – especially the kitchen equipment. I’m happy for that to stay locked away indefinitely…problem is I’ve got kids to feed so that really doesn’t help anyone, having a fully furnished, organised library on arrival without any dinner cooking…

  6. I know exactly what you went through, Sadhbh. We recently moved house and in addition to the accumulated stuff we have managed to amass over the years, we run 2 businesses from home – books and audiobooks. Hundreds and hundreds of boxes, and that’s not counting the 60 boxes of books we gave away, the huge about of stuff we gave away and the 6 cubic metre skip of rubbish we got rid of.

    I’m in absolutely no hurry to move again any time soon.

  7. I moved 50,000 books from one shop to another just under 4 years ago -it was a 26 year accumulation and I am never ever doing it again

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