Should it stay or should it go now?

When needs Clash with sensible shopping.

A bit more than a month to go, and we’re now into the cycle of “Will we take this to France, and if we don’t what will we do with it?” I’ve moved a lot of times, and usually it’s a case of yard sale + bring along everything and sort it out later.

So we start with food. It’s easy with the ten year old canned goods that you’ll never eat, but what do you do when you run out of a staple like sugar or olive oil? Buy a full bottle that you know you’ll throw away? Use the canola that you still have? Added to that when you’re also renovating a forty year old house there are the many nights when no-one wants to cook, you’re sick of the limited take-out options in North Vancouver, and you give in to something that can be thrown into the oven.

We’re resigned to throwing out a ton of food but would really love to limit it.

Clothes are an entirely different question. Do we really want to haul old worn clothing halfway around the globe? Do we really want to spend our first week in France shopping for everyday jeans and T-shirts? And even though I’m not a Fashion Fan, it does matter that we dress at least somewhat like a local. I’d love to avoid the dumb tourist look.

The real challenge are the borderline cases - the almost but not quite worn-out hiking boots, the “functional but starting to show wear rain gear”.

And, as mentioned before, the electrical universe. Can this 120 volt 60 cycle appliance also handle 220 volts and 50 cycles? Is that a yes, a no, or a “maybe but slower”? Or will it blow up? Or, to be more specific…

Can we get by with a $19.99 plug adapter? Or do you need to also convert 220v to 120v for $110.00? or a “Step Up & Step Down Voltage Transformer for Any Appliance up to 500W, 110V 120V 220V 240V Converter 50/60 Hz” for $151.00?

And then there’s the myriad of things that normally you would bring along, but there’s just no way to be sure it will work in France. Stuff that is “standard” sized in our Imperial measurement world, but not quite “standard” in metric France.

And of course, the books, and business records, and notes and letters and pictures that on one hand you feel you have to keep, but on the other hand you know that you haven’t looked at in ten years, and probably won’t look at again in ten more.

Oh well, at least we have the Fiat question figured out.