This has got to be the worst move I’ve ever done.
It all started when the move turned into an eviction. Yes Dear hadn’t paid February’s rent on their place, figuring it was falling apart, the landlord wouldn’t do any repairs or effective pest control, and being a slumlord he’d probably end up keeping the whole deposit anyway. Apparently he went to court and filed eviction proceedings on her. Thinking that it would take minimum 30 days for them to evict, she let things ride.
The morning after I got there, truckloads of workers, escorted by the sheriffs department, showed up at the door. Luckily we were scheduled to get a truck that afternoon and I was able to get it early. With some frantic phone calls, we were able to get the church bishop and some missionaries to help us load our stuff into the truck as the workers were putting it out on the lawn. Though most everything was rescued a few things, including two AC window units, got left behind and locked up. Plus, given that the timetable was rushed by one day, the packing was very disorganized, and likely other things will turn up missing.
Valuable lesson: NEVER ignore legal proceedings about ANYTHING, they will come back to bite you. Hard.
To make things even more stressful I managed to clip a stop sign while pulling the truck in, right in front of the sheriffs. Though damage was minimal, I ended up getting ticketed for failure to maintain lane. At least they weren’t dicks about it, they actually apologized but given it was city property and it happened right in front of them, they had to do something. But now I’m going to find out how to deal with that, lest I have warrants hanging over my head every time I go to Georgia.
The net result ended up being we had to expedite everything by one day, though with a lot more stress and disorganization. But I can’t imagine how catastrophic it would have been had I not gotten there the night before, or if they decided to do their eviction any earlier in the week.
We ended up in a motel room that night. Next day, I had to enlist the help of a friend to work on the minivan due to a lack of tools (all in my trunk in Arkansas). We got it in semi-satisfactory running condition, and set out that evening on the 640mi trek. My wife, being an ex-school bus driver, took the truck with daughter PBJ, and I drove the minivan with AJ riding in his carseat behind me.
Discovered several things during the drive. First, it is unnerving to follow behind a 26ft truck packed to the gills with our stuff, fighting a stiff wind and occasionally fishtailing. Especially being the middle of the night, and not knowing how tired my wife might be (I sure was). My stomach was in knots the whole way, praying that she wouldn’t lose control and end up in the ditch or turning it over. Despite this, I decided that in my fatigued state I was better off driving something more forgiving than something I wasn’t used to. We did eventually stop in Mississippi at a rest area for a four-hour nap.
Second, I have no problem with country music. As a passenger. But as the night and the drive wore on I realized that I needed something to get the blood pumping, to raise the alertness level. After some fruitless searching through the CD collection left in the minivan (damn, I forgot to bring my own), I turned on the radio and found a good hard rock/alternative station. So I spent the next few hours listening to the likes of AC/DC, Nirvana, and a little Black Crowes to keep myself alert. AJ didn’t seem to mind too much, either.
Third: AJ makes a wonderful traveling baby. Of course he slept most of the way, but for the most part he was very well behaved and fussed only when we stopped. I did catch him at one point pulling his diapers out of the diaper bag and waving them around, but other than that he made a great traveling companion. I would sometimes snack on some Chex or Cheerios mix and put my hand behind me to where he could reach and help himself. Becoming remarkably coordinated for an eighteen-month old.
Anyway we did manage to arrive safely at SIL’s, where we proceeded to collapse with exhaustion. The next night we unloaded all our stuff in storage and turned in the truck without further issues. At least with the truck or our stuff, that is.
Unfortunately the move (particularly the fuel costs) drained our budget far more than anticipated, so Yes Dear, PBJ, and AJ will be staying at her sister’s in the meantime, probably for the rest of the month until we can replenish our finances enough to get into a house of our own. I plan on trying to up my hours as much as they will give me at work in the coming weeks, so I’m likely to be very tired soon.
Worse yet, my housemate is moving to Florida this weekend, so I’ll have to find someplace to flop down at night close to my job, maybe a weekly motel, until something turns up closer to where my family is (about 2 ½ hours away, too much at current gas prices for a daily commute). In short, I got my family out here yet I feel like they are no closer than before.
And something that probably wouldn’t come as a surprise to many married couples that have dealt with stressful moves or remodeling: things have gotten very tense between Yes Dear & I as of late. Sadly the stress of moving has brought to the surface numerous issues that I’m not that comfortable blogging about, but I feel like I was dealt some undeserved, or not completely deserved, low blows. That I may or may not explore later in another post, depending on time, privacy, and reliable net connection.
So there you have it: a monumental clusterfuck of a move. One that’s threatening to make my family more distant than they were before. On top of that is they are currently staying in the Stress Motel (my SIL’s) and who knows what drama may be awaiting in the coming weeks. Plus the fact that none of us like to impose on anyone, family or otherwise, yet right now we’re pretty much forced to.
But we’ll make it. Somehow, we will make it all work.