All my worldly belongings finally arrived on Monday after a trans-Atlantic journey aboard a container ship. Everything was packed into 18 banana boxes, plus three more odd shaped boxes for my bike, tripod and file cabinet. So now, apart from a few items in a basement in New Paltz, everything I own has now joined me in Berlin.
The trip was not easy. When the Santa Bettina arrived in Hamburg, gas was detected in the container that held my belongings. An “investigation” ensued and we were charged 200 Euros for the trouble -even though my palette was not the source of the gas and I was the only non-commercial customer in the container. We tried to argue this point, but there are too many companies involved and no one would explain to us what was happening or take responsibility for the charge. If we didn’t pay it, we wouldn’t get the stuff and in addition we would begin being charged for storing it in Hamburg.
So we paid the money, and were told we would get an hour’s warning before the stuff arrived at our doorstop. A cranky truck driver called me only twenty-minutes before. He was stubborn, there was no reasoning with him and we had to rush home to meet him. The boxes were still plastic wrapped onto the palette when he dropped it off, but there was a film of black soot on everything. What exactly happened in that container, we’ll probably never know and it’s looking very unlikely that we will get the 200 Euros back. So if you plan to do any international shipping, DON’T USE IQ GLOBAL!