Sunday, 31 August 2008

Recipe For Chaos


Any of the following, but the more, the better:

1 frantic man with mysteriously delayed passport

1 evasive British Passport and Border Control

1 exhausted woman on writing withdrawal, with expired U.S. passport

3 giddy teenagers in fever pitch of excitement

68 (approximate number) boxes of books, CDs, etc arranged in obstacle-course fashion throughout household, up and down staircases

1 neurotic cat determined to supply household with fresh meat on 3-hourly basis

1 flat crammed to bursting point with unnecessary foodstuffs, magazines, manuscripts, books, superfluous clothing, dodgy electric goods that frantic man, exhausted woman and giddy teenagers (above) are loathe to part with

150 (approximate number) important text/reference books that frantic man and exhausted woman cannot do without despite weight restriction of 20 kg and no household goods baggage allowance

32 important documents, 5 of which are guaranteed to go missing at last minute

4 brand-new laptops which 3 giddy teenagers are determined to play with when they should be packing

10 packed, locked suitcases which contain items above-mentioned frantic man, etc need at last minute

1 still hooked-up computer that exhausted woman finds a compelling distraction

Mix together well -- shake, stir, whatever. Stand well back and observe.

Note: While this is an authentic recipe guaranteed to produce results, we recommend that you don't try this yourselves, kids -- whatever age you are.


debra said...

such a full recipe that is was posted twice :-)
In the words of my #1 daughter, who is now safely in her NYC dorm, "Breathe."

Kim Ayres said...

Minus 48 kilos of beans, pulses, grains, spices and condiments.

Thank you :)

Charles Gramlich said...

and I thought waiting for Hurricane Gustav was bad. My sympathies

Jacqui said...

Wow. I got stressed out just reading it!

And I did a numbers thing today too; we must be on a strange mind meld.

Robin said...

I am never trying this! I agree with Jacqui - I got stressed out just reading this. I couldn't go away with my family for 2 days without needing a quick labotomy. This situation would knock me off for sure. Best of luck! Sheesh.

laura said...

Definitely a recipe that I hope to never use! I'm trying to clean out my closets,for my future move, and wish someone would quit throwing fertility drugs and yeast into them; everything seems to be multiplying and expanding. Maybe you could write a book on 'How not to move' and it's proceeds can pay for your stay in the mental hospital!

Eryl Shields said...

I thought you only had two teenagers, where did the third come from? Also, did I miss where you are going or have you not said yet?

How you can still type with all this going on I really don't know. I'd be sitting in a heap, clutching myself and wailing.

Ello said...

Poor Mary! I so feel for you! I wish there was anything I could do. My craziness is bad, but no where near as bad as yours! Hang in there! It's all good!

Anonymous said...

Oh dear dog - that truly sounds like a nightmare. Just think how nice it will be once it's all over and you can look back at this stage and laugh (maniacally, perhaps). GOOD LUCK with everything.

Have you announced where you're moving yet?

- Tinamarie from Verla Kay

Sarah Blake Johnson said...

Good luck with it all, says the writer whose family has been living out of their suitcases for the last 3 months.
I hope we get our goods soon. I miss my boxes and boxes of books.

Moving is . . . hard.

Christy said...

I'm confused too - are you picking up extra children somewhere? Regardless, I'm sending you all the peace and calm I can muster.

Carole said...

That is an excellent recipe for Chaos. I had one too, but I'm going to replace it with yours.

Angela said...

Dear me. I'm exhausted just reading this!

Tabitha said...

Wow, talk about life turning upside down. And what on earth are you going to do about your passport??? A good friend of mine just had an expired passport fiasco, but fortunately Chicago has an expedited service so she was okay. But I haven't the first clue about overseas. Hope it all works out. :) And I hope your cat stops bringing you gifts! :)

The Anti-Wife said...

I'm sending you happy, calm thoughts!

Anonymous said...

Don't forget to top it all off with a sprinkle of Murphy's Law!

Carrie Harris said...

Yow. I'm sure you didn't intend this, but I feel a lot better about my own chaos. Sending you calming vibes via the Internet...

Mary Witzl said...

Debra -- God, what a ninny I felt seeing that! I'm surprised I didn't post it three times. And you are right: yoga breathing has come in very handy.

Kim -- Thank you so much! I hope Maggie wasn't upset when you got home with all that lot. I'll bet unloading it wasn't much of a picnic.

I hope you told Maggie how much we all enjoyed her scones and soup. I went back for more of the cake later, but someone had eaten it.

Charles -- Your experience might not be as hectic as mine, but I'm betting it was a lot scarier. I'm so glad that Gustav passed you by, and I hope that things there are back to normal now!

Jacqui -- The hardest part of all this is that I can't get around to read everyone else's blogs and I'm not sure when I'll manage it. I'm trying to set aside one hour at night for this just for my mental stability. I look forward to seeing you over on your blog.

Robin -- The crazy part is that there is a lot more going on that I can't blog about. Good thing you're not my psychiatrist; you'd get a real earful. And I WILL post my review of your book before we leave -- that's on my schedule!

Laura -- Something weird has happened to our socks lately, and I'm betting someone has been sowing our sock-and-stocking drawers with hormones, now that you mention it! I swear, we could outfit this entire town. Some of them don't even have holes in them. Good luck with your move!

Eryl -- The fact that I can write while this is going on is either proof that I'm a total flake or an indication that for me, writing really is therapy. I'm hoping to see you this afternoon -- be careful navigating the stairs!

Ello -- It's not all good, sad to say, but I tell myself that there must be some good to come of this. At least a change of place and occupation will drain away some of my can't-get-published angst. But thank you!

Tinamarie -- Thank you for visiting me in my craziness here. I miss Verla's! We're moving to the Middle East, but I've decided, for complex reasons, not to specify where.

Sarah -- I know what you mean. We have a very strict baggage allowance and no provision for shipping at all. So we cannot take ANY of our books and they must all go into storage. I feel like crying at the thought, but I am told the school where we will be teaching has a very good library. I intend to avail myself of it lavishly.

Christy -- Yes, we've picked up another one, a friend of my eldest daughter. And thank you so much for the peace and calm; I'll return them with interest when I can!

Carole -- What a nice compliment! I didn't put in a few secret ingredients, but if we ever meet, I plan to bend your ear with the stories I'm holding back. Good thing I'm an insomniac. Who needs more than two hours of sleep a night when you can spend it packing instead?

Angela -- Believe me, I got exhausted just writing it. But coming back here and reading all these comments has cheered me up immeasurably. Weird, eh?

Tabitha -- The passports came through! Mine came first (yay for the American embassy!) followed by my husband's, but only after he nagged and badgered the folks at Passport and Border Control. His name is probably on their **** list by now, but he has his passport. The cat had a bird yesterday morning and a mouse last night, so she seems to be tapering down. Fingers crossed!

Anti-wife -- Thank you, those calming thoughts are working! Or maybe it was the two aspirin I took earlier, but I swear I feel a lot calmer.

Kate -- You're right: I knew I'd gone and forgotten something! A good, liberal dusting of Murphy's law is just the thing for a big fat serving of chaos. Fortunately, it is readily available.

Carrie -- I'm happy if this makes anyone feel less frantic. And please keep those calming vibes coming!

ChrisEldin said...

Awww! You're really doing it!!!

You are always writing in your head, so don't worry too much about that part. I can't wait to see you on the other side!!

Mary Witzl said...

We are really doing it! One half of the family is already over there, and the rest of us will soon be on our way. I'll meet you on the other side!