Ramblings from the Gryphon Rose

Thursday, November 18, 2004

The Fourth Parallel of Hell . . .

. . . also known as Moving. It really is.
Yes, we moved this past weekend. Yes, we are in the house now. But it wasn’t easy.
We spent all of last week painting. And I do mean all of it. Friday night Scott, Mook and I were still over there painting the trim and closets in the master bedroom. And the painting isn’t done yet. We still need to edge the hallway, touch up the molding in Adara’s room, and finish both her closet, the linen closet, and the entryway coat closet. But, at 2:30 Friday night/Saturday morning, after pulling up the carpet in the master bedroom (to reveal the beautiful hardwood floor we had thought might be under it) and removing the five thousand staples and tacks (they REALLY didn’t want that carpet to go anywhere!), we decided to call it a night. Particularly since we were supposed to move the next day.
Oh, but the moving saga does not start there, my friends. Oh no, it begins earlier on Friday.
I had been browsing Craig’s List recently for furniture—it’s an online classifieds. That’s where I found the kitchen table, and another table with benches. And, on Thursday, I find a guy selling two “sofa-beds” for $100 total. But he needs them out by Friday night. So I check with Budget and add an extra day to my truck rental. Friday I leave work a little early and pick up the truck. Then I drive out to this guy’s place. For those of you not in the NYC area, Friday was a miserable day, cold and constant rain, and driving a fifteen-foot truck under those conditions isn’t fun. Add in the fact that I have to go someplace I’ve never been, have to take the highway to get there, and have no one with me to help me navigate and it is not a good time.
Then I get to this guy Leo’s apartment, follow him upstairs—and he points to a black metal futon and says “there’s one, and the other is right in here.” Futons! I have a futon! In fact, I have that exact same futon! That is not a sofa-bed! And I can’t take it—we had planned to get rid of our existing futon, not get it two siblings! I do buy his TV, which is the same size screen as mine but newer and a smaller case and lighter, but mainly because I hate having to go through all this and then go home empty-handed.
So I’m in a great mood when I get home, of course. Then Mook shows up, and he and I lug the hutch and the sideboard and the new dresser and our two old dressers out to the truck. We figure we’ll bring them over to the house, thus getting them out of the apartment, and then meet Scott there to start painting. Which is all well and good, except that they are going into the garage, which means driving in back of the house. Which means taking the tight turn and the really steep incline into the party driveway in back. Mook gets out to spot me, and tells me I’m fine in front. Except that actually he was just telling me I am fine on my front corner, and is skipping around to check out the other side. But, because it is raining out and the furniture inside the truck is sliding around, I don’t hear him yelling at me. Or banging on the side of the truck. And I figure that horrible crash is just one of the pieces falling over.
Not so much.
No, it’s the truck taking out the low brick wall at the corner of the driveway—the brick wall belonging to my new neighbor. And some of those same bricks then fall down into his driveway, and clip the front fender of his car. Well, not car so much—more Mercedes SUV.
Seriously, someone upstairs is laughing at me right now.
So of course I get out and go knock on the guy’s door and apologize and give him my contact info and tell him to let me know how much it is. Then, utterly dispirited, I drive the truck two doors down to my house, and we unload. Scott shows up then, and we get to painting, but I have a hard time concentrating. Or smiling. Or breathing. All I can think is “what a great way to start out our life in this neighborhood” and “How much of what little money I have left is this going to cost to fix?”
Saturday dawns cold but clear. Mook and Scott crashed with us, so the four of us are there from the start. Lirath, Peter, and Arwen turn up around 10. Lois gets there maybe an hour later. And Dana and Steve come by around noon or so. No one else shows up.
The problem is that, because we were painting all week, we haven’t had much time to pack. So we spend the day packing everything up, loading the furniture into the truck, and loading boxes into Lirath’s car. We make six runs over to the house with his car, which gets most of that out of the way. But we also don’t have enough boxes—I thought we’d saved all of the ones from our move to the apartment, but it turns out we must have tossed most of them—and so we buy some more and also recycle some of the current ones (by emptying out books and things at the house and bringing the boxes back). Arwen, Dana, and Steve take off at around 5 or 6, having been a BIG help. At around 7:30 Jen’s cousin Steve shows up at the house with the table and benches, and a display case from Jen’s aunt. We carry those into the house—by this time my arms feel like wet noodles—then go back to the apartment for a quick dinner. Steve leaves, as does Lirath. Jen, Peter, Scott, Mook, and Lois and I decide that we’re not going to manage to get everything to the house tonight. So, rather than push it, we decide to load the last of the furniture into the truck, leave the truck parked across the street from my house, and then move the rest in the morning (I had the truck until Monday morning). So everyone leaves at around 8:30. Jean calls shortly after that, and offers to come over and bring more boxes and help pack what’s left. She shows up around 9, we pack for another hour, she leaves, Jen and I pack a little more, and then we crash at around midnight.
Sunday, Peter, Mook, and Scott show up again. We take the bed apart, lug it and a few other things into the truck, and then go to the storage locker, where we get the wardrobe, a rug, and some boxes. Then we drive over to the house and unload. After the wardrobe is in, and the boxes are in the garage, we take a break for lunch. This is at around 3. Jean shows up at the apartment and brings Jen, Adara, Bleys, and our electronics over in her car, and we walk back over from lunch to meet them there Then we finish unloading the truck. We actually have everything out by 7pm. Then we drive the truck back to Budget, and Jean drops Mook, Scott, and Peter off at the subway, swings me by the apartment to pick up a few odds and ends, and then takes me home as well.
I took Monday off from work, so I get up at 7am, go to Budget to hand in the keys, then go by the apartment again and lug three bags of miscellaneous items back to the house. Jen and I spend the day sorting a bit, and get the family room mostly set up. We also let Bleys loose to wander, and he decides that the family room is his.
Since then we’ve been sorting and unpacking and trying to get things in place. It’s coming together, slowly but surely. But my arms and legs still hurt when I move. And, right now, we still don’t have a working phone or cable or Internet—but that’s a whole other Hell, so I’ll deal with that in some other post.


  • At 11/19/2004 11:54 AM, Blogger Robert said…

    Those of us in homes recall our particular and unique experiences. Few moves are ever pleasant or easy. Still, you had the luxury of painting before moving which is a huge plus. And to find the hardwood floor is also a sing the gods favor you.

    Much of the hardest work is now over. You'll be staring at boxes and bags for the next few months, wondering why you bothered to move it all, but stop and take a long look. This is your home. A place where Adara will grow up and cherish as her own.

    Enjoy it and good luck!

  • At 5/04/2006 12:53 PM, Blogger Belinda Gwen said…

    Gryphon Rose, I got to say your post on The Fourth Parallel of Hell . . . best describes futon sofa bed!!

  • At 2/18/2007 8:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

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