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Sunday, May 11, 2008

To Ship or Not to Ship- That is the Question

Well, we come up the the eternal question, again. One faced by all expats. To ship a container load of your stuff to the new place, or to sell everything and buy there. I guess the big question is what do you gain by shipping?

Well, first of all, you would still have all your familiar stuff around you. This is a big plus. You've been sitting in that chair or couch or laying in that bed for over a year, and many more in some cases. You know that chair. It is your friend. Now you travel to a foreign country, to a house that you have never seen, surrounded by people that you've never met and who speak a language that you will be struggling with for years--- shouldn't you at least have one friend along? That comfy old chair?

Alas, the practical side of it is that unless you have very expensive and very exclusive furniture, that you are best off to sell off and personal items in boxes, then buy when you arrive. Even the things you put in your few pitiful boxes are really not going to convince you that you are not in a completely foreign environment. After all, you are traveling thousands of miles to accomplish just that- how could a few trinkets or even all of your furniture convince you otherwise?

Truth be told- when we arrive, receive our 20-30 boxes and unpack them, both of us know we are going to look at the stuff and say, "What did we bring all of this junk here for?" But at least it will be a few pieces of junk to soften the reality- for a while.

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