Thursday, November 20, 2008

The mother of all Ikea projects

So we’re now officially in the new place (and Internet back!), lots of boxes still unpacked. Frankly some of them probably have stuff I wouldn’t even miss. But can I really bring myself to throw that away? The new place is one and a half times bigger than the old and we’re enjoying that. But with all the boxes it’s still cluttered at the moment. A first it was even worse because the kitchen was woefully lacking in cabinets. There was only the cabinet for the sink, in fact. Seems to be a French thing that in apartments you equip your kitchen yourself. As in fridge, stove, you name it. How I would love to have one of the kitchen set-ups of any of my grad school apartments- stove, fridge, microwave, ample cabinet space- all built-in!

So once we got a tiny bit settled, my husband headed for Ikea to check out their furniture. I was imagining buying a China cabinet and us creating some kind of make-shift counter. He came back disenchanted with what they had and suggested we go back together the afternoon. But everybody and their brother had the same idea. Cars backed up waiting to get in the lot on this public holiday, November 11.
Once inside I pointed out some basic bookshelf type things that would at least help us store our pasta, etc. But husband had his own ideas (as usual) and showed me the real kitchen elements. Typical of us, we squabbled, I rolled my eyes, yada yada. Why does it always seem all the other couples are in perfect harmony when you and your mate are in near war mode? My pessimistic and melancholic side (my husband would say this is my only side) couldn’t help but imagine how sad it would be for someone to come back to Ikea after a break-up, remembering all the furniture they had bought together as a couple.

Sometimes it’s better just to let one person decide instead of creating a scene in a Swedish furniture store. So I decided to choose my battles and abandon my idea of cheap kitchen/storage solutions. So husband came home two days later with what seemed like 36 flat packages which we had to haul up in the elevator or stairs (for those which were too tall for the elevator, thank goodness we’re on the second floor and not the fourth). And together we assembled part of one cabinet once baby had gone to sleep. I have to say the common goal of kitchen storage helped us make up after the bickering. A few days later he industriously put together the rest of it, never mind the occasional outburst in French about where’s the putain (bad word!) screw? Et merde!

Now I’m happy to have storage and a little counter space again. And wondering how the heck we’re gonna get this out whenever we move.


Jenenz said...

Nice, a storage shelf big enough to store your cat. What more can one ask for?

Crystal said...

you're back!!!!Thank god.

Seems like you'll be a lot happier in the new place. It's amazing what a little extra space can do. Max is the opposite in Ikea...he just lets me buy whatever I want. When we get home, it's his job to put it together and then I "feng shui" the place. But goddamn, thank goodness Ikea exists for nice, cheap furniture!