Friday, July 08, 2005
The Saga of the Move... Part II
Now, where was I?

Oh, yes, slogging through heat and humidity and such on Sunday. I started getting little warning blips on my radar that the next day was to be more stressful than it should have been, because my phone didn't ring all morning. U-Haul was, in theory, going to call me to verify my reservation and tell me exactly when and where to pick up the truck and trailer. (Truck for all our stuff, trailer for Emily's swingset, nice and simple. Hah.)

I gave in and called there in the early afternoon, and began what was to be a short but intense relationship with Andi. We had several conversations that day revolving around a few simple facts: (1) Andi did have our reservation in her computer; (2) she did not have my 26' truck on her lot; (3) she had no idea where one might be; (4) she had no idea how on earth she might possibly even begin to find out where one might be (because apparently U-Haul trucks simply materialize onto the lot when the employees aren't looking); and (5) she was good and confident that we would get our truck the next day, first thing in the morning. I was all warm and gooey inside at her confidence, but somehow I still managed to cling to some bastion of anxiety, given the preceding three facts. By the end of the evening, I was checking the side of my neck to make sure I hadn't started bleeding from the ears, and Andi's initially questionable customer service skills had degraded into outright snottiness. ("You'll GET your TRUCK, OKAY???")

So, Monday dawned hot and humid and miserable once again, and there were no trucks of decent size anywhere in the area. And when I say "area," I mean I would have driven an hour in any direction to get one, had there been one to get. But, no. Finally, by 9:00 a.m., we switched plans and got two 14' trucks instead. Which are shorter in height as well as length, but better than nothing at all. We also got to play a fun little game called "Let's Make Kate's Eyes Explode," whereby Andi directs me to a truck with a small, enclosed trailer on the back, I gently remind her that we actually needed a flatbed trailer, and I am rewarded with a blank stare.

Actually, by this point, I had handed all the U-Haul duties over to Willem, because I KNOW it wasn't Andi's fault that my blood pressure had reached a point where you could divide it and get numbers greater than 2, but I wasn't confident I could prevent myself from taking it out on Andi. So he got the blank stare, instead. Lucky guy.

Midway through the day, we made a fascinating discovery: our stuff would not fit into two 14' U-Hauls. Not even close. We ended up having to rent a THIRD truck. Such fun!! And we still threw out a ton of stuff at the end of the day.

Now, way back in May, I had reserved two big, strapping employees of a local moving company to help Willem load the truck(s). I knew I'd be of inconsistent usefulness, depending on what the kids were doing, so I called for backup. Lo and behold, somehow our reservation got bumped for another customer who was willing to pay for them to drive and unload, too. I still can't figure out how I had the audacity to be surprised when I found out, but, whatever. Willem ended up getting a friend of his to help, which was a wonderful thing, but instead of taking 4-5 hours to pack the trucks, it took 7. We had to call our realtor and push back the buyers' walk-through to 7:30, and even then we barely got out of the house in time.

So we had left a few bags of garbage on the deck, and some clothes hangers in the closet, that sort of thing, and we had told our realtor to remind the buyers that we'd be back that evening to grab the last remaining stuff. We all got into various vehicles - Willem and his friend each drove a U-Haul, and I had Jacob in the car with me (luckily Emily had a friend to stay with; they fought and bossed each other around all evening but apparently this is fun for them, since it's all they ever do - she would have been miserable in the car). And we drove the two hours to drop off the U-Hauls and do the walk-through on our new house.

And on that note, I'll end for tonight... because during the drive home, we got the phone call that REALLY sent things downhill.