The Move: The Second Week (The Final Week)

This is how the second week of the move went. The internet failed on September 9th, so that I have been offline, which is beyond frustrating with all the stuff to be done for the move!  Finally the service technician came to the house, saw the problem instantly, all Bell’s fault, fixed it, and here I am!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

We drove back to the country house yesterday, arriving in the evening. It was an odiferous trip, and very inspiring for Attila, who is sensitive to smell. The house, when we arrived, was quite warm; the heat wave has penetrated the building. We did manage to get a good night’s sleep by directing fans on the bed, and sleeping in very light nightclothes.

We have one room emptied! Only seven more to go. Attila had to run out and fetch more boxes, this is a big job. We just might have to spend five years purging, after the move.

I am cleaning as we go, otherwise the cleaning job would be too big for me.

The heat and humidity today are stifling. Attila soldiers on as usual, the heat does not affect him. I wilt in the heat. I am still getting things done, but my breaks become more frequent, and longer, as the day wears on, and the temperature rises.

We pick up our second truck tomorrow, and have borrowed another truck for Saturday for a run to the local dump. The load to the dump will be sizeable.

I have an ancient filing cabinet, legal size, with drawers that cannot be removed. It held the articles and books I needed while working on my PhD, mostly for studying for my comprehensive exam. These papers and books will be burned. Also in the cabinet were my publications, and information about the papers I gave at conferences, and conference sessions I organized. For now I am keeping copies of my own work, which filled the equivalent of two bankers boxes. The ancient filing cabinet is going to the dump.

There were two small stains in the carpet, which were there when we bought the house. I didn’t care about them, so we didn’t pay any attention to them. I am now using oxyclean to try and remove them, with only partial success. Still, I tried. There is not enough time to clean the carpets, not with only two weeks notice. Cleaning the carpets would not remove the stains.

Attila decided to risk falling behind with the packing, and take a second run at finding the dead mouse in the car. I found instructions online on how to remove the seats, which he did. He found one very large dead mouse in the frame between the doors on the passenger side of the car, there may be more in there, he is still looking as I write. The mouse had built a huge nest, so the nesting material has to be removed as well. To be honest, I am extremely grateful that he found that dead mouse! I think the messiest part was removing the maggots, yuck. You really have to wonder why cars, which sit outside all the time, are designed in such a way as to give access to rodents, who like to find shelter for the winter in man made structures.

The weather:
29°C
Date: 4:00 PM EDT Thursday 3 September 2015
Condition: Sunny
Pressure: 101.4 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: 28.2°C
Dewpoint: 15.5°C
Humidity: 45%
Wind: NNE 4 km/h
Humidex: 34

Friday, September 4,2015

It is 4:44 a.m. and I have been awake for a few hours. Today I am driving the car down to the little house in the city. Attila will follow with the second moving truck on Sunday morning. Most of what is left to do must be done by Attila, and it serves very little purpose for me to be at the country house, at least until it is empty and ready to clean. I like to leave by 5:00 a.m. for the drive, as it is my peak time of day. However, I must stay to drive Attila to the pick up point for the rental truck, and that will not be ready until after 9:00 a.m. We could have picked the truck up last night, but would have had to leave immediately to get there before closing time. Attila decided that was too rushed, and told the fellow we would pick the truck up this morning, not ideal for me! This will be one journey accompanied by sugar and caffeine. Usually I have one mug of coffee in the morning, no more. Today will be different, I have to stay very alert for most of the day. Double double coffee… 2:18 p.m. I arrived safely, only a little over five hours on the road, a good journey.

There are a few things I can accomplish at the little house in the city, but not a lot, since one crucial job was not accomplished as we unloaded the first truck. The best laid plans! The bookcases that line the walls needed to be filled with books, so that furniture could be placed in front of them. This was crucial in order to fit all of the furniture into the little house. But Attila decided the weight supports for the base of the bookcases were “ornamental”, and didn’t load them into the truck; they didn’t arrive, two of the crucial bookcases could not receive books. Terra has offered to come over and put the supports in, I cannot do it, too much lifting and twisting for my back and knees, as some of the furniture has already been placed in front of the bookcases, and now has to be moved to work on them.

Attila has an assortment of building materials that we cannot move in such a short time. Tonight a co-worker will bring a truck and take some of the materials away. Better to give them away to someone who can use them, than take them to the dump.

As the move moves on, and the pressure mounts, we are becoming a little bit tattered at the seams… we are still smiling.

18°C
Date: 5:00 AM EDT Friday 4 September 2015
Condition: Clear
Pressure: 101.8 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: 17.9°C
Dewpoint: 16.4°C
Humidity: 91%
Wind: ENE 4 km/h

27°C
Date: 2:00 PM EDT Friday 4 September 2015
Condition: Partly Cloudy
Pressure: 102.0 kPa
Tendency: falling
Visibility: 24 km
Temperature: 27.2°C
Dewpoint: 10.2°C
Humidity: 45%
Wind: NNE 26 km/h
Humidex: 31

Saturday, September 5, 2015

The heat wave continues, as does our move. It looks like we are moving in the hottest weather of the summer. The heat makes it tiring, but the sunshine is a real asset when moving, so all in all, things have worked out well for us with the weather.

The bookcase misadventure continues. Lares dropped by to install the weight supports at the bottom of the bookcases. After he left, and I was ready to begin placing the wooden shelves on the bookcase, to ready them for the books, I discovered that I had sent the shelf brackets back to the country house, in error. Much hemming and hawing later, I removed the brackets from a hutch in the living room, and used them to insert six of the ten shelves on the bottom sections of the bookcases. Then I spent the rest of the day unpacking boxes of books and attempting to get the lot onto the partially constructed bookcases. By the end of the day I had only five boxes of books that could not be placed.

Attila was hard at work all day, loading the second truck at the country house, by himself. I don’t hear the ups and downs of his very challenging adventure at the country house, although he has briefly mentioned that the heat and humidity are severe, which means it is incredibly hot and humid. Last I spoke to him it was almost 9:00 p.m. and he had hours of work ahead of him to get the job done. Tomorrow he has to drive the truck to the little house in the city, a five hour jaunt, unload it, and get it back to the rental place by 9 a.m. the following morning. One day to unload. The temperature is to rise to 30C tomorrow. It seems insurmountable at this point, but we shall persevere.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

I awoke at 5:00 a.m. this morning, thinking about Attila. He packed and loaded the truck all day yesterday, and probably deep into the night.

This morning I spoke with him at 7 a.m., he had slept little, too wound up to sleep. He is still loading the truck, and he observed that we have “too much stuff”. I say amen to that. This move to the little house, going from 1800 to 640 square feet, will strong arm us into deciding which belongings are important, and which are not. Next Saturday there may just be a yard sale in our driveway. I am preparing to be ruthless. But I won’t be getting rid of any of my books, or Attila’s.

This is the second draft of today’s entry. I was fretting when I awoke, worried about Attila working too hard, and driving the truck for five hours. He promised to nap if he felt sleepy, even if it meant parking the truck in the shade and sleeping in the cab for a few hours on the trip down. My first draft was full of worry, which doesn’t serve any purpose, but it helps to write it all down and then delete it, sort of makes it seem like the worry is over, and I can get on with the rest of my day.

Discovery: Some furniture moves when you merely lean against it as a dead weight, no pushing required. In this way I moved one cabinet, and was able to unpack the boxes from the bathroom. Only a hundred more boxes to go!

10:30 a.m.:

Attila just called, he is filling his thermos with coffee and hitting the road for the drive down in the truck. He should be here by 4 p.m. He says that the rest of the “stuff” in the sheds will have to be shifted to a storage locker near the country house, to be brought down bit by bit in our vehicle. Not ideal, but we are out of time to bring down another truck load, so there it is. We have too much stuff!

8:41 p.m.:

Attila arrived at around 4:30 p.m., looking like “death warmed over”, but safe and sound. Terra and Lares had arrived an hour or so before he did. They all started immediately to unload the truck, as it had to be returned in the morning. Shortly after beginning, Lares took one look at Attila and told him he looked awful. Terra took a look at him and decided he should go straight to bed, which he did. He power napped for 30 minutes, and woke up when I arrived home with a takeout pizza. Feeling refreshed after his break and his nap, they resumed unloading the truck and finished around 8:00 p.m. It would have taken us all night to unload the truck without them! Terra had to work tomorrow, so she and Lares headed home for some much deserved rest. Attila rested in his chair for little while, enjoying a cold soda, then he had a long hot bath, and after that we turned in for the night.

The house has almost wall to wall boxes and furniture. There is a path through the boxes through the living room, the kitchen is functional, as is the bathroom. It took me about a half an hour to clear the boxes and bags off the beds, and with that done the house is functional. It is not pretty, but it is functional. We are tired, but happy to have the bulk of the move behind us.

One more trip north on Tuesday, to visit with the lawyer, pick up Tank, move more belongings into a storage locker near where Attila works, and to do a final cleaning of the house, to get it ready for it’s new family.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Sheesh, here it is 4:44 a.m. and I am awake for the day! We did go to bed early, as Attila faded quickly as soon as he stopped moving.

5:42 a.m.:

Attila sleeps on, thank goodness. The truck goes back this morning, so I will have to wake him in an hour or so, but for now he is sleeping soundly. I am sitting at the edge of the tunnel, the tunnel through the boxes. We have access to the refrigerator, the kitchen sink, the back door, the front door, the bathroom, two chairs, and the beds. Everything is accessed through tunnels of boxes. This will change, but it is going to take some time.

We have two chairs where we can sit at the edge of the tunnel, this photo is taken from “my” chair. Every room in the house looks the same. Happy days ahead taking care of this lot!
Tunnel of Boxes 2015 09 07 at 5 38 AM

Thursday, September 10, 2015

6:52 a.m.:

There is no move that cannot be made more stressful by Bell Canada. Currently our internet at the little house in the city is gone, completely gone. Of course, it will cost me fifty cents a minute to talk to tech support, as there is no land line at the little house in the city, and the pay as you go cell phone was never meant to be used in this way. I am so very tempted to cancel the whole Bell mess, and be rid of Bell altogether, they are so very, very difficult to deal with. I called them yesterday, paying dearly for the call, only to be told that the internet will “just start working”. It has not “just started working”. I will be heading off to McDonald’s restaurant for my morning coffee, so that I can sit in my car and talk to Bell tech support on the McDonald’s wifi, using Skype. This is beyond annoying.

Attila called around six this morning, he is still moving loads of belongings into the storage locker. He MUST be out of the country house by noon, as we no longer own the house after that point. I do not do well, psychically, with last minute races to deadlines; in most instances I am able to navigate my life so as to avoid them. I am taking medication for my stomach, as this race with the clock is causing me angst. Attila has promised to call me when he leaves the house, as the lawyer will be calling me at noon to confirm vacancy. Two weeks notice of a major move has left us with very little wiggle room.

So, here I am at the little house in the city. On Tuesday Attila and I headed out to sign the papers for the closing today, Thursday. Our lawyer is a seven hour drive away, so we drove for seven hours to attend the 1 p.m. appointment, then drove another hour back to the country house. We began the cleaning, and the last of the packing. The kitchen and chest freezer were the only indoor tasks left late Tuesday night. The packing had not yet begun in the garden shed. I had a fitful sleep at the country house on Tuesday night, sleeping on the floor, in the heat wave, but managed to get enough rest to make the drive back home, to the little house in the city, leaving at 5 a.m., in the dark and the rain.

There were a gazillion humungous transport trucks with trailers on the highway Wednesday morning, for the first hour on the road. It was a two lane highway, with the trucks very close by, in the oncoming lane, and in front of and behind the car. They were all hauling gravel. The visibility was very poor, as it was raining hard and the haze of water around the fast travelling transports formed a visual wall. By the time I stopped for fuel, at about 6:00 a.m., I decided to sit tight with a cup of coffee until light came into the sky. Then the driving was much easier. And it was easier still when I turned onto a different highway on my route, one not favoured by the mega-transport trucks. Five hours after departure I arrived safely, a little bit tired, but safe.

The smell of dead mouse is all but gone in the car, thank goodness. It could still be detected after the car had been sitting closed in the heat and humidity for some time, but dissipated quickly as soon as the windows were opened, and/or, the ventilation system was engaged.

I have been unpacking since yesterday morning, and have hardly made a dent in the floor to ceiling box collection. No matter, it will all be done in time. Two completely functional kitchens are being consolidated into one. There are decisions to make; which vinegar bottle to keep, which one to recycle, that kind of thing. It is time consuming.

The heat wave ended abruptly as I slept last night. It was 13C when I looked at the thermometer outside the kitchen window this morning, chilly. The heat wave began just as our move began, and now it has ended as the move comes to an end.

3:30 p.m.:

Attila called at 1:30 p.m. to say he was on his way, he had stopped for fuel so he took the opportunity to touch base. With luck, he will be here in time for supper, at our house, our only house, our one home, our single abode. That sounds so good! Yay!

I have been unpacking kitchen boxes, and using the process as an opportunity to repackage items, and reorganize the kitchen. It is slow going, but fun in an odd sort of way. Right now every available horizontal space is covered with something. I think we will be doing take out for supper!

The internet stopped working yesterday, it was supposed to be working by today. It wasn’t functioning when I got up this morning, then it was on for about forty minutes, just as I was about to go out the door to go to McDonald’s to use their wifi. I did a few needful things, then it cut out again and did not come back. I am hoping to use Attila’s cell phone to call Bell, it is a Bell phone, and I think tech support is free minutes, even though it is a pay as you go phone. They did not send the label to return the modem from the country house, bless their pointed little heads, I need to call them about that too. Bell, a despised name in our household.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Attila arrived home yesterday evening in Tank. He ended up running out of time at the country house, and leaving a few things behind, like the garden bench, and a few assorted other items. Luckily these are items that the new owners might actually appreciate having, so we aren’t expecting any complaints. And quite frankly, we haven’t room for what we have managed to move, so we won’t miss those things.

The internet has been a nightmare to restore, and of course it was down on the day the real estate deal closed, making things a lot more complicated at my end. The cell phone ran out of minutes, all used up waiting on hold with Bell support which was not free minutes on the Bell pay-as-you-go phone. So I ended up conducting a support call at McDonald’s restaurant, using their wifi and Skype. I found a late night drug store that sold time for the cell phone, as I couldn’t top up online, so that just before bedtime I got the cell phone working again, connected with Bell, and found out that a technician is scheduled to address the internet problem today.

Attila is off to look for local work today, the last weekday of his vacation. We have our fingers crossed that he finds something, but really, with only one day to look there doesn’t seem much chance of it working out.

It has been a busy vacation this year! I wondered, when we planned to take time to go to the parks, hike, enjoy ourselves a bit, if the country house would sell, altering our plans for relaxation. That is what happened.

We still have a storage locker full of stuff that needs to be moved, but we have a month to sort that out. Where will all that locker stuff go, who knows! Right now there is no room at the inn.

I think yesterday was my lowest point in the move. I would like to say that I sailed through the whole experience cheerfully, and until yesterday I did. But then the internet failed during the last of the real estate deal, and I seemed to fall off my desired pedestal of equanimity. I will say that the fellow at Bell technical support was a gentleman, he was cheerful and helpful despite my less than civil attitude. Attitude never works in one’s favour, but there are times when things just get to be too much altogether!

The internet is becoming the standard conduit of business, and Bell’s residential service seems to approach it as a recreational service. When it is used for paying bills and receiving documents from lawyers, it is far from a recreational service. I think that residential internet service needs more careful regulation, since it is becoming the standard mode of crucial communication.

So, there it is, and here we are!

Tomorrow, I am going to push for a picnic at the park! The boxes will still be here when we get back.

Quote

“Every heart that has beat strongly and cheerfully has left a hopeful impulse behind it in the world, and bettered the tradition of mankind.”

Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson

16 Comments

  1. OMG. Maggie! I can’t believe you are both alive after all that stress and moving and driving and digging out dead mice and then the worst of all — the one word I can’t bring myself to utter out loud – “maggots” – Oh, it hurt to even type it. I don’t know why but that word just makes my whole body feel sick. Anyway, it’s a shame this whole story couldn’t have earned you both millions because it would have made a great reality show! So much better than anything else they’ve produced! Maggie the Mover… or something. Glad the end is nearing… but what a few weeks. Wow.

  2. I sure hope you get that picnic, you sure do deserve to relax after this adventure. Now, at least, no time constraints on straightening that mess up, but your own desire to do so! (So glad the mouse was found and no more stink!) RELAX WELL!

  3. crochetlady or Lee Ann

    Please picnic!! And hopefully you get phone/internet service all figured out. I will be goig through your move in a month. An we don’t have a pace to live yet!

  4. Bex, I am very glad that Attila dealt with that dead mouse! Like you, I am no fan of the process of disposal. The car has only a slight hint of the odour now, I don’t even notice it when we first open the doors.

    I would not want to do this again! The time just flew by, there was so much to do. At the end, Attila said he was just heaving bags of stuff into the storage locker, and the telling thing is, I don’t miss anything! Still, there are items I will want in that storage locker, so we will be slowly bringing down load after load in Tank. Or, if Attila finds work anytime soon, we will rent a trailer from Uhaul and pull it home with Tank.

    It was a challenge, with two old farts, with very little assistance, moving the contents of a three bedroom house. But here we are, and here we hope to stay!

  5. Joan, our plans for picnics and pleasures seem to be unpopular with the Gods! 🙂 Today the weather turned cold 13C, rain pelting down out of the sky, not a day for a picnic or a hike. Sooo… we hare having pancakes and bacon and raspberries for breakfast, had our morning coffee on the back veranda together, we shopped for Attila’s food for living in Tank for a week, we are going together to the laundromat to catch up with the laundry, and we will bring all of the rest of the food and fabrics up from the basement. It is a short list, so we will do it all together, and take our time. Tonight we are preparing a meal around fresh green beans that we will pick from our garden. All in all, it seems to us a wonderful day.

  6. Lee Ann, the internet technician came yesterday and we discovered that Bell had sold us a product for which there was no service on our street, so that the internet simply stopped working when they switched us over. The technician was a great guy, and kudos to him for dealing so well with the administrative insanity that is Bell, he owns his job, and works things out for the customers. He had us up and running in about 30 minutes. Today we have solid internet service, slow, 1.7 mbps, which is really slow, and obscenely overpriced at $55.95 a month, but it is the only option on our street, so we will be happy with it.

    Wow, moving in a month and you haven’t a place to move to yet, you are braver than I am! As hectic as things have been over the last few weeks, we are landing in a familiar setting, with a lot of the infrastructure for daily living already in place. Wishing much luck with your move, I hope it goes smoothly and the perfect new home presents itself to you soon!

  7. I am exhausted, just reading this!
    Lately I have been looking around my home, at my possessions, feeling guilty and sorry for anyone who will have to deal with it all should I die suddenly, unexpectedly. I have the beginnings of the urge to pare down bigtime. I may start with my closet, full of hanging clothing I haven’t worn in more than a year, and with my dresser, stuffed tight. The thought of the entire conglomeration overwhelms me. Thank goodness there is no deadline I’m aware of.
    You did good, girl. I know how stressful a quick move is; I once had a three-week one to deal with, and if it weren’t for Scott’s help I would not have managed it. You and Attila are an excellent team.

  8. How do we accumulate such volumes of “stuff” Kate! I have the pyrex mixing bowels from the wedding shower for my first marriage, 46 years ago. They are heavy and I don’t use them anymore, but haven’t let them go. That is just one example of the “stuff” we have. Attila is just as bad as I am for accumulating stuff, only he goes the extra mile and “rescues” furniture and all kinds of things that other people are purging from their homes. I don’t plan on doing this all in one day, but to slowly take things out of here, day after day after day.

    Having a great team mate to rely on is crucial, kudos to Scott for stepping into the breach when you needed him. The keepers are like that, there when you need them most, making it so very obvious what great partners they can be.

  9. Rosemary

    I throughly enjoy your entries. This one left me in awe and exhausted! Cannot imagine accomplishing all you have done in such a brief span of time. Now the deadlines are gone enjoy doing things at your own pace. Very happy for you both.

  10. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    I was hyped just reading your entry, Maggie! No doubt your move was a tour de force. No wonder you were taking something for your stomach, I would have been too!

    I feel for Attila, camping out in Tank during the week. DH asks if Attila has a place where he can shower?

    I guess regular day-to-day life will give you both some much needed rest, it’s relative isn’t it. Thank goodness you’ll now be able to live at your own pace and not at someone else’s schedule.

    Another step taken – with no small effort – in the direction you’ve been wanting to go. There has to be some feeling of fulfillment in that, not to mention relief at no longer having to maintain two homes.

    Sending both of you restorative *hugs* and hoping it won’t be long before Attila can be permanently at the city house with you.

  11. The rush is behind us now Teri, but we were sure feeling it on that last day, Thursday, when we had to be out of the country house by noon.

    Attila will have access to a bathroom with running water, a sink and a toilet. He will wash using the sink. Attila, back in the days when he was working as a geologist in the wild bush of the far north, learned how to survive with few amenities, for long periods of time. He and another geologist were flown in to remote sites and left there for weeks and weeks at a time, just the two of them. He is pretty resourceful.

    This is day two of the settling in, and I am having to reset my mind set, I keep thinking things like, “we should take that back to the country house”. There is no longer a country house in our lives, but my habitual thought processes are still operating in two houses. That will change!

    Hey, no firewood to get in before the snow flies! A lot less snow shoveling to tackle from now on. We can compost! We can care for a garden!

    Thanks for the restorative *hugs*, we are both floating down to earth today. 🙂

  12. This morning when I arose, I had this idea in my head – that your “little house in the city” needs a name now! And the first thing that came into my head was “Mist Cottage” — and “Mist” standing for “Maggie-In-Si-Tu” (Maggie in situ)… get it? Your home now, not one of two… I just had to relate this. Silly but you were on my mind in the night and this morning… hoping you are slowly resting from that epoch move!

  13. Bex, that is a sweet name, Attila liked it too, so Mist Cottage it is. Thank you for such a great suggestion!

    The pace slowed for us as soon as Attila drove away from the country house, and it was a done deal. Nothing else that we had to do was as urgent as getting our worldly possessions out of the country house on time, and it was down to Attila for the physical labour, and me for the administrative end of things. We had a busy but enjoyable weekend together. It doesn’t look much different at Mist Cottage today, than it did on Thursday when Attila arrived home. But things are coming along, despite appearances.

  14. Teri, we are not really sure how things will work out in the next few months. So far the plan is that Attila returns home this Saturday, and may possibly stay here into Monday before returning north to work. We aren’t even sure about that plan, but we are hopeful that we will see each other every week.

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