Saturday, June 02, 2018

Moving to Canada

Oxford, England, 29 May

Last minute preparations for the move, including a mini-ritual to collect up all the memories from the house in Oxford.

Oxford, England, 30 May

Today is the big day of the move. The removal men have arrived and our life is disappearing into a series of cardboard boxes. The cats were freaked out so we have locked them in the bathroom. Poor mogs 😿😿

I've been on the verge of tears all morning as I feel very rooted to this land, and sad to leave my friends and family.

We've gone out for a coffee to a lovely Caribbean-themed community cafe run by the local community. I wish I'd discovered it before.

Passed a local tower block being re-clad which made me think of Grenfell Tower. Finally burst into tears telling Bob about a guy who lost his mum and sister (they were trapped on the top floor) and was on the phone with them till they died.

When we got back to the house, one of the movers had put the cat carriers in a box, but luckily we were just in time to fish them out, spray them with Feliway, and get the cats into them.

The taxi arrived at 1:30pm and we got to Heathrow very early, about 3pm. The flight was at 6, but was delayed by 45 minutes. It took a while to get through security, what with the cats and everything, but all the staff at Heathrow were really helpful, and several were cat lovers. In the end, the flight was delayed by an hour and a half btwemade up sometime on the way over. It took ages to collect our bags, get through immigration (collected my PR paperwork, and declaring the cats) and then we had to go and pick up our hire car; we had to ride the airport train to the end and then the hire company picked us up in a minibus. And then we got stuck in a traffic jam outside Mississauga.

Cambridge, Ontario, 31 May
Arrived safely. The cats are still lurking upstairs, they haven't explored the whole house yet. We managed to get some kip. Arrived 1:30 am Canadian time (6:30 am UK time). There were two "happy new home" cards waiting for us.

Just about to go and get some breakfast. And coffee!

Here's a picture of the back garden.
Bob is mowing the lawn with next door's mower.

Morrissey is hiding in a cupboard in the bathroom. He has explored but got worried when he heard next door's dog. Ziggy has explored the whole house, except the basement. He likes looking out of the windows onto the garden.  The Feliway really helped them. 

We saw some chipmunks in the garden this afternoon. A friend of Bob's came over, bringing coffee and muffins, some herbs, incense, and a candle, and showed us where the local swimming pool is, and also helped us get a green bin from the dump. Later we went to the swimming pool, which has a hot tub, so we got a lot of the aches and pains from the flight out.

Cambridge, Ontario, 1 June

All feeling much better here. We did a new home ritual, asking for the blessing and protection of the elements, releasing the memories from the old house into the new one. The cats seem much happier today. Morrissey had a big purr fest this morning and has come down to explore of his own accord. I had a terrible night's sleep (too hot, uncomfortable air mattress) but it has cooled down a bit now and I eventually got some sleep. We met up with a UK friend who is moving here, and went to a British pub for lunch, and bought a camp bed.
Cambridge, Ontario, 2 June
Today Morrissey went and explored the basement... the first time I turned the light on for him, the second time he went down there in the dark. Both cats have purred and snuggled up with us. It was soooo hot the first couple of nights, we were all melting. It got a lot cooler last night. The cats seem to like all the space in the house and windows to look out of.

The neighbours are very friendly. The lady next door lent us her lawnmower. Today we are picking up a bed and a sofa and a gas cooker from Bob's sisters.

The house is nice but currently not much furniture - except what Bob brought out from the locker. Luckily that includes dining table and chairs. It'll be great when it has all our stuff in it. The walls need painting too. Who the heck paints their walls grey?

The food here is amazing, so fresh and tasty. Watercress that tastes like Hampshire watercress, not like the Spanish stuff, and actually sweet lettuces, and lots of choice. And pretty reasonable prices too.
So far we have seen black squirrels, grey squirrels, chipmunks, a chickadee, and a couple of North American Robins (or as they are called here, robins).

Drove over to Guelph to get the truck to pick up the sofa and bed and stove, but there were only two seats in it, so Bob has gone on to Hamilton to pick up his son, and then the stuff.

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