Wednesday, May 25, 2011

There's Something I've Forgotten...

There is a rational, logical and 100% backed-by-experience worry plaguing the depths of my mind. All you organisers and list-makers out there, I know that you know how I feel. I’m talking about the expectations that non-organised people have for us. The irrational and illogical expectations they have for us.

I firmly believe the world can be split into two halves. Just as we speak of the haves and the have-nots, and of all the more serious divisions of society, we should also be aware of the evil that lurks on the border or organisation-ville and oh-am-i-late?-land.

Imagine a sitcom-ready dream sequence as I take you back a few weeks to moving day. By 11am I was in tears. Most likely bought on by the stress of the day, but triggered by the fact that everyone kept grumping at me when I didn’t know the answers to their endless questions. Yes there was a slight communication break down when I thought Mum had sorted the what-went-where and she thought I had, but because I had packed every last box, paid the bills, organised the bond refund and sorted our moving to Monty’s, everyone presumed I knew exactly what box went where and when and how. We had a van, we had two locations (my sisters garage and Mum’s storage locker) and we had a pile of boxes and some furniture. I thought since I’d done everything else, it would all fall into place on the day. Alas, it did not.

I’d like to take this opportunity to point out the biggest benefit of being a non-organiser - Not a single grump fell in Courtney’s direction, because everyone knew he didn’t know the answer. In terms of organisation, Courts and I are chalk and cheese. Amongst his many talents, you will not find a list or plan in sight. So Courts, although still stressed by his hatred for moving in general, glided happily through the still blue water of low-expectations. Since everyone knew he wouldn’t know, they asked me. They presumed I knew everything and then when I didn’t, it was my fault. Hence, after several grumps and a lot of misdirected stress, I at 25 years of age had a cuddle with my Mum and a cry about how everyone was just so mean.

Step back and take a good long look at the panorama view of August 2010 to now. If you look closely – actually, even if you squint and turn your head to the side – you will see that I have done the majority of planning for Europe. It’s not that I have controlled it all – Courtney has been in on every decision. Disneyland or not? Disneyland. Santorini or Mykonos? Santorini. Valencia or Alicante? Neither, San Sebastian. Now, ask him to put those decisions in a logical order and I’ll wish you luck and turn back to Teen Mom 2 (Oh, car crash TV at it’s best!). This boy, the love of my life, knows that at some point we are doing these things. But, with his memory he probably doesn’t recall the Valencia-Alicante debate, he just knows we’re going to the Running of the Bulls. It’s not for lack of trying. He researched Umbria last week. He tried searching for a bike to hire. He’s found videos of the roads of the Amalfi Coast to ‘prove’ they’re safe to ride (I’m unconvinced).

This isn’t a moan at my beloved. At times I wish he knew more about our plans, but he has his strengths and I have mine. It will all even out in the wash when he controls the bike for 12,000kms. The point I’m slowly getting to, is that because he knows I’m organised, he expects me to be super organised. Had I travelled to London myself, I would have got off the plane and found a way to the hostel at the time, as I did in America. When we get off the flight, it will be midnight and Courts will be tired and he will turn to me and say ‘How are we getting to the hostel?’ expecting me to have all the answers. If I don’t have an answer, my poor tired Long Haired Boy won’t be at the best end of the patience stick, and so I have overplanned.

Contrary to popular belief I don’t like to plan every last detail. What I like is doing and because I am over-excitable and impatient, planning is the closest thing to doing and therefore I plan while I wait for the doing part. Despite not loving to plan the little details, I know exactly how we are getting from the plane to the hostel. I know our check in details and they’re bound with all our other check in details in a folder (a beautiful, highlighted folder). 

This is because of that worry plaguing the depths of my mind, which in turn goes back to those pesky little expectations. I am not a genius, or superman, or God. I have forgotten something. I don’t know what it is, or how many ‘it’s I’ve forgotten (please let it only be a few) but at some point, some time, Courts will turn to me and say ‘what now?’ and I won’t know.

Although he can be grumpy, I need to give Courts more credit. It is my own experiences from all areas of life that lead me to expect to get in trouble for not knowing things. All things. Cross all your fingers and toes for me, dear readers, that the thing I’ve forgotten isn’t too difficult to fix on the fly. As an organiser, do you understand my worry? Or if you live on the other side of the organisational fence, have you ever been guilty of high expectations for the listmakers in your life?