8/19/2006 - Moving day
Today was moving day. My grandma Dixie started us out this morning by bringing over coffee and enough kolaches to feed a small army. We got a torrential rain shower about 9 o'clock, leading us to wonder whether packing the truck would even be possible. By the time the rain finally let up, we learned that the truck wasn't even in our zip code yet. They were still waiting for it to be delivered from Hempstead. The day was not getting off to a great start.
Finally we picked up the truck at 12:30. Already half a day gone, and no progress made. But lots of friends and family started showing up by then, and there was a buzz of excitement. Arwen's dad and uncle as well as my stepdad and numerous friends were on hand to help with all the heavy lifting. My mom brought over a spread of snack foods and homemade Kahlua brownies (which Arwen tried unsuccessfully to keep me away from). Beryl brought over a delicious assortment of sandwhiches that were so gorgeous I thought she'd had them catered. Our friends Xave and Ginger brought their one-year-old Alessio over and Billy and Jenny brought Berry, who's now about 6 months. So it seemed like a party.
After a few hours of back breaking work in the heat (not my back, mind you; Arwen forbid me to lift anything) we had made substantial progress and were feeling pretty good about the situation. Folks lingered until the early evening, snacking and continuing to load stuff as well as chit chat and hang out. After folks started heading out, making the final goodbyes, Mom suggested that if we could go ahead and finish up, we'd be welcome to stay at her house. She suggested it might be nice to sleep in a proper bed, get a hot shower in the morning and have a head start on the drive. Great idea! So we thought we'd do the "last few things" that needed doing before heading out. Shouldn't take long, right? Ha!
There is just so much to do when you are a) moving out of state, b) only get one go at packing everything up, and c) are also preparing your house to be rented out after you leave. Mom and Stephen stuck it out with us till about 10 pm, at which point I was so exhausted that Arwen ordered them to take me home. None of us had even had dinner. It was pitiful. Our friends Jough and Sarah were even more heroic. They stuck it out with Arwen until the bitter end, sometime near 1 in the morning. They painted two entire walls in our house (due to a tragic paint mix-up) and did heaven knows what else.
In the end, Arwen and the Pentonys (Jough and Sarah) got us 90% of the way there. There was still one hallway needing touchup paint, the entire house needed to be cleaned top to bottom, and oh yeah, one of our two cats had gone missing. Luckily we have a great realtor who has someone on hand to help us with the painting and cleaning, and our next-door neighbor happens to be in cat rescue. So one way or another it would all work out.
I knew that moving "ourselves" instead of hiring a proper moving company would be a lot of work, but neither Arwen nor I had experienced that depth of exhaustion in a very long time. And the thing is, it would've been completely hopeless without all the people who were there to help us. There's just no way we could've gotten it all done without the friends and family who worked and sweated right beside us. So to all of you, we say a huge THANKS!