Life repeats itself. Six years ago I was saying goodbye to my home and everything in it, bit by bit, day by day and I said I will never do this again. Little did I know that life repeats itself. It was a tough experience, much more so than I had ever anticipated.
I was living in Munich back then, a city which I had grown cold of, so I was ready and happy to leave. I had cancelled the contract of my flat and next thing was to get rid of my furniture. All of it. Everything. I had decided to move to Barcelona and I wanted to go there possessing no more than two luggages. I had also promised myself I was never going to own any furniture again and that I would keep as few belongings as possible. I wanted to be free and unburdened to move wherever and whenever I wanted. Two luggages, that’s it. I am proud to say that I ultimately managed it, too. Yet, the journey there was a tough one.
As I started trying to get rid of my stuff, I realised that I had many more things than I was aware of. I started advertising them online in internet, on some apps etc. and I started getting responses as well. It was a weary experience though. People were unreliable, they would make appointments and would not show up, not cancel either. If they came they would try to negotiate every single cent, trying to find damages which were simply not there to take the price down.They would want me to dismantle things once they were in the flat, even though I had explicitly written that dismantling was not part of the deal.
One day one girl came. She was interested in the paintings on my wall. I had collected them during my travels. Some of them were from the local artists, like a street artist in New Orleans, or some were from museums in various cities like Istanbul or Brussels. They were dear to me but they didn’t fit in two luggages. The girl came and she asked me “How can you ever let go of these?” It hurt. She bought them all. At least I know that those paintings are now in good hands.
I had a big Ikea closet. One of those popular ones that cover the whole wall. It had to go. One day a big man came by, he was interested in my TV set initially. He saw the closet and asked me if I was going to sell that, too. When I said yes, he asked “How are you going to do it? Will you dismantle it yourself?” I am 1 meter 58 cm tall. I replied I didn’t know how I was going to do it. Inside, I was hoping for some sort of miracle. That big man was my miracle. Godsend. He said he was going to help me. He used to work for Ikea before he retired and he knew how to do it. So he came by everyday for a few days 1-2 hours and he dismantled it. He also sold it for me. Godsend. I gave him the TV and many other things he liked and needed just so. I was and I do remain grateful to this wonderful man. May he live a blessed life, I hope.
It took many weeks and many stories of similar kind to get rid of my furniture and everything else. I managed. My flat was crystal clean and wonderfully empty two days before I was going to return my keys to the agency. I slept on my yoga mat and I kept two very good bottles of wine. The last evening I invited my two best friends, Antonia and Christoph, my sister and brother in Munich. We set on the empty parquet floor, opened the wines and drank them all to celebrate my now empty life in Munich as well as my next unknown and hopefully full life in Barcelona.
That day I said I will never do this again. I will never own furniture, so that I will never have to sell it again. I will never possess more things than I am able to carry. I will never rent an unfurnished flat. I will never burden myself with stuff. Little did I know that life repeats itself.
Today I advertised furniture online to sell. One TV set and one dining table. They are mine. I bought them. Six years later, during the winter of 2022 in Zurich, I decided I was going to settle down. I found my home. I will make a home and I will make it nice. I still very well remembered the promise I had given myself. I decided to break it. Life is a constant change. We change, we grow, we evolve. What I needed then is not what I need today and I will not stubbornly hold on to promises that do not serve me anymore. This year I needed and wanted to settle down. Stay put, make a home, make a life, declare it as such. Make it the place you always want to come back to. So I found myself in an unfurnished flat and put furniture in it. Very few, not more than strictly necessary, and nice. I made it my home.
Six years later I am again saying goodbye to my home, this home. The life that I set up in it did not hold. Everything happens for a reason. I am grateful to the fact that this year I strongly felt again that I wanted to establish a steady home again. Not be a nomad any more. Know where I want to belong. Have roots. It is a very nice feeling when you want to build your nest. I had forgotten it. I am grateful that I remembered and I lived it again. The life in this flat in Zurich did not hold. Hence, I am again building a new one in a flat a few streets further up. There is less space there, even for my minimalist belongings, so I am again letting things go. Life repeat’s itself.
I thought I was going to manage it lightly this time, after all I have been through this once and I know how to handle it. I must say, today it hurt when I put those ads online. It is nowhere as devastating as it was back then, but it hurt. I don’t know why. Maybe because it calls back sad memories, maybe there is more to it.
I am looking forward to my new home a few streets further up and to my new life in it in a few weeks from now. I am truly excited. It is a lovely small flat in my favorite area in Zurich, the city I call home now, and it is my little nest. I will make it nice. I will be happy to ever come back to this city and to that flat from wherever I am, I know it. Yet, today it hurt. I embrace it. Life repeats itself. Sunshine.