So today is one week since I started moving, and let me tell you, there is nothing you could make me do to relive this week. I got the animals all safely stowed, and immediately, my movers told me my stuff wouldn’t fit into a container. I kind of knew that, but I let them know that I needed them to do their best to get the furniture in. They did get all the furniture, but last Wednesday (a day on which I was working on less than three hours of sleep) was an 18-hour day in which I filled an entire dumpster with my discards, followed by four hours of sleep and a day on which I had to admit I wouldn’t be out by closing, my realtor had to bring a truck to help me get my stuff parceled out to temporary holding places, I had to beg for more time knowing the buyer had the right to fine me.
I went to closing late, filthy, smelly, and exhausted. I’d been working for four solid hours so far that morning and hadn’t eaten anything in more than 16. As I drove there on the highway, my realtor with a borrowed truck loaded with stuff I could hardly bear to look at behind me, I had directions on GPS on my phone, and my phone started randomly video-chatting little-used numbers of professional contacts. My check engine light came on. If it could go wrong, it pretty much did. I’m still a little stunned that I didn’t have the obvious nervous breakdown I deserved then and there.
When they gave me four extra post-closing hours to finish moving and cleaning (lovely, lovely buyer!) without imposing the penalties they were legally within their rights to impose, I did my best. I still had to press a passerby into service (I wish I was kidding), but I was officially out of the house by four minutes after that deadline.
Later that day, we went to the walkthrough of the place we were buying. Everything looked good until we realized that they took the washer/dryer they were supposed to have left. That night, the puppy got me lost in my mom’s condo complex, and after two days clocking almost 20 miles, the last thing I wanted was to wander around in the dark for 20 minutes, looking for her building. But that’s what we did.
The next day, I went to work, and we went to closing. The seller promised to bring back the washer/dryer that night, which he did. I rented a carpet shampooer to touch up the carpet in advance of my movers. Things seemed like they were coming together. We worked on the new house until midnight. We discovered a puzzling ceiling fan situation in the living room. I headed back to the house early to wait for movers. A friend had loaned me an SUV, which was simplifying clearing out the stuff I had stowed with mom and other friends. I waited and waited for the movers, who called 20 minutes after the latest time they were supposed to call, and then proceeded to go to the wrong addresses for another almost 30 minutes.
I got them underway. A friend came to help, the friend who loaned me the SUV brought lunch and the container plants from my garden. The movers finished up. My friend and I started working on the house— unpacking and chatting. I realized that I needed to finish the carpets and return the carpet shampooer. I was moments away when my friend apologetically let me know that she had just found a water problem in my basement. She theorizes they didn’t hook the washer up right, and the carpets were soaked. I had her turn off the water and go get mom while I returned the carpet shampooer, picked up the dog from day camp, and bought a Shop Vac. My friend kindly Shop-Vac-ed the water out of my carpets while I made my bed (she was concerned that if there weren’t sheets on the bed, I wouldn’t get a decent night’s sleep, again. A justifiable concern, if a selfless one.
Sunday, the cable guy came. Poor guy left, like 5.5 hours later, with the job only partially done (another service call tomorrow!). I was plugging away— unpacking, weeding, cleaning. Another friend came to help. I got mom. Sunday evening, the saga of mom’s move began. I helped a little, mostly by getting my stuff out of there, but also with moving heavy things and getting things off high shelves. I told mom I’d stay and help, I told her I’d come back and help. I told her it was not ever too late to call or too early to call. I busied myself around the house all morning Monday. Her movers finally got to my house about 2 p.m., and they said they needed to make another trip. And that they couldn’t do it Monday. So we settled in for yet another day of this. But we were finally all in one house.
Mom couldn’t sleep the night before her move, either, so she had been up since 4 a.m. I made sure there were sheets on her bed. She asked for help with adjusting the ceiling fan in her room. We heard a pop, and suddenly the ceiling fan and light fixture didn’t work, and neither did the lights in her bathroom. I checked the circuit breaker— nothing amiss. I tried the switches and the pull cords. Nothing.
They finished up the move yesterday afternoon. The house is still a disaster area. Mom and I are going to have to have several unpleasant conversations about volume of stuff— she has five skillets in various sizes sitting on our table right now. I have two skillets that have served me for 15 years. She’s not really going to cook—she hasn’t been cooking for years— which is why the skillets are effectively brand-new. I don’t think we need 7 skillets, between us, and I don’t want to store more than about 4 (look at me compromise!) And I think I remember something about an electric skillet, not yet accounted for.
I contacted the seller about the ceiling fans and the fact that I still don’t have a pool key, last night. He helped me sort out the problem in mom’s room, but made it seem like I was an idiot for not being able to figure out the one in the living room (“are you using the remote? Are you pointing the remote at the ceiling fan? Does the remote need batteries?” [all legitimate questions, you understand, but of course I tried all of those things before I called him about it]), but then called and apologized, because he found out there was a previously existing problem with it that he’d been unaware of. He’s sending an electrician and the pool key, over. I didn’t make an issue of the water in the basement, which we’re pretty sure was his fault, because it was either intentional or accidental, and either way, I don’t know how to speak about it productively. Beyond “I’m sorry” or “that sucks,” there’s not that much he can do about it. If the problem is that the fittings weren’t properly tightened, I can do that. I’m dragging my feet in doing it, because I dread finding out there’s more to it than that, but I will probably do it tonight and test it tonight, so if we do have to call a specialist, we don’t have to do it on a weekend. Wish me luck.