Hi ho! Hi Ho! It’s off to pack I go

It has started! The packing of the apartment has started!!!

I am a part of this one Facebook group for Incheon English teachers. One post a few months ago (and by a few I mean like last December) stated that you could ship luggage home just as it is, instead of using boxes (as long as it was under a certain size). This is a great thing! I decided that I wanted to use this option since I absolutely HATE traveling with suitcases. Especially carry-ons!

Last time I was here, I shipped a lot of things too – like a box FULL of books. When I arrived in Korea, I had a big suitcase plus a carry-on. When I left Korea, I had shipped home two huge boxes, had my big suitcase plus TWO carry-on sized bags. I was so angry that I had to pay to check my second bag! But that’s another story.

This time, I have been really conscious about what I have been buying and really I haven’t done a lot of impulse purchasing. Except for clothes. I have bought so many clothes while I have been here! Packing up is going to be a struggle!! And a part of me really wants to go shopping again for some fall-ish things. But I have enough clothes…..I don’t….yes I do….NO I don’t…..

I wanted to get my carry-on packed over the weekend with my heavy winter sweaters, my winter coat and my summer clothes. Well I put it off all weekend and this morning I still didn’t even have a “first to pack” pile. To put things in perspective, I didn’t pack a single item until the day before my plane left when I was moving here. I am very much a last minute packer. Then spent the whole day in a panic trying to get things washed and packed. 

This morning I started to rearrange things and I had a “first to pack” pile. I just packed it up (heavy winter sweaters, fancy clothes, summer skirts and super cool summer shirts). It filled my carry-on up quite nicely. But my winter coat is staying. Although I kind of feel like I should get a lock for the zipper….I might run down to the mart first thing in the morning to pick one up on the way to the airport.

Looking at the shelving unit where I keep all my clothes, it still looks as full as it was this morning! Even when all those items packed away. I’d say I probably packed about 1/5-1/4 of my stuff but still it looks just as full.

But I have come to a dilemma: I have a new pile on my shelves (probably why it still looks so full) of clothes that I don’t want to take with me. Some of them need to be thrown away (like one of my all time favourite summer dresses which I’ve had for 6 years and it’s starting to be discoloured), but others I am just over. I was talking to a Korean friend today and she says that there aren’t really any thrift stores that I can donate to (they are all for old ladies and these clothes most definitely aren’t!), but I feel kind of bad just throwing them away. I could technically take them home with me, but that would be adding weight to my luggage just to get ride of them when I arrive back in Canada? It doesn’t really seem worth it. Especially now that I think about it and I probably wouldn’t want to buy any of the items second hand if I were in a thrift store. So I’m not exactly sure what to do with them.

Also, what about the things that I have bought here to make my life easier? I didn’t have to purchase so much during my first contract, the teacher I was replacing had lived in the apartment before me (and the teacher before her as well) so a lot of things were already there. But this time, I had to buy a lot of stuff. I should ask to see if the new teacher will be taking over my apartment. If not, then I’m not sure what to do with this stuff either….like my clothes rack or my power converter box.

The good thing about all of this is that I get to go through my clothes again. I typically tell people that I live out of three suitcases because I kind of really do. Over the last 6 years I have moved 7 times – this upcoming move will be 8, so I have gotten accustomed to sorting through my life and getting rid of the clutter. It’s actually really amazing! I know what I own and I have been able to really cut down on buying things that I don’t need. I’m not a big impulse buyer and I really love that about myself. I don’t need a fancy apartment or lots of stuff to feel happy and fulfilled in life. While I do hate having to pack up and resettle so often, I love the ramifications of such a life style. I just hope that this move back to Canada (and the one about a month later for my yet to be discovered new job which I will count as the same move) will be the last one for a long while.

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