Dr. Jan Meyer: Moving has lots of ups and downs

By : 
Dr. Jan Meyer
The Biker's Diary

Unlike many, if not most, people, all my life I have enjoyed moving. I like change, and that helps. I like the challenges of a new place, both the physical space and the adventure of meeting new people and a new neighborhood. This most recent move, however, has had more than its share of challenges.

Because it’s a three-way move, just getting stuff to the third point has been complicated. At first we had thought the Arizona belongings would stay in storage there until we found a new place to call home in Minnesota. But sort of out of the blue, the moving company that was handling the St. Paul part called on a Wednesday to say they had a load going to Las Vegas and could pick up our Arizona stuff next Monday on the way back.

We had known if we wanted to use this company we were going to have to wait for the “haul back,” as it is called. However, we had thought all along it would take a while for that to happen. We weren’t in a hurry, but this would be an opportunity to at least get it in the vicinity.

After being assured that, at this end, it would be stored in the company’s climate-controlled facility, and making some last-minute changes in our own schedules, we agreed to get out there. The next shock was that we would have to leave on Friday night or the tickets would cost each of us over $200 more. Uffda.

My friend from pre-school, and all the way through our lives, lives less than two miles away from where we had lived in Peoria, Ariz., and is known for hosting friends from all over when they visit the Phoenix area. Fortunately, she was open that entire weekend. It was a bonus that we got to spend “quality time” with her and our favorite neighbors and other friends while we awaited Monday morning and the van’s arrival.

Having seen the furniture safely off on its way to Minnesota, we were able to turn our attention back to finalizing a place, and also getting the St. Paul stuff ready to go. Because it wasn’t as large a place, it was a little less time consuming. However, it doesn’t seem to make any difference how well organized I am during the packing process, at the last minute there are always those things that have to get put willy-nilly into the closest container.

Now that we are unpacking from both vans, I am finding plenty of that, or rather, not finding it. I should say that while I know there is plenty of it, it is also usually important stuff. After all, that’s why it is last minute: I needed it right up to the end. But it is also the hardest stuff to find in the sea of boxes and containers!

Moving two places into a third one that is not huge is yet another challenge. Over and over I get stymied because I first need all of a certain thing in one place so I can both figure out which to save and which to toss and then how much space in storage it will need. Just the process of doing that is a big challenge. First I started with the boxes that were stacked in the kitchen/eating area. Soon, glassware and other dishes covered the table and counter tops and overflowed to the coffee table. So I had to stop and install some shelving that came along with me that I really wanted to use, and now needed. I didn’t have the right fasteners, so that meant dropping everything and running to the hardware store. Well, I did have the right ones, but they were in the wrong place, and it was easier to buy new than to spend time moving boxes around yet again.

So far it has turned out to be impossible to finish one complete project from start to end. I have turned out to be more easily distracted than ever before. I go into the bedroom to get something, however, in picking it up I uncover two pair of shoes. I think, OK, while I am here I will put these with the rest of the shoe stack. I go into the closet, put them down, and see something there that can be quickly done which will help another project along. Then, on my way back to the kitchen to continue what I had been doing, I get distracted by something else I spot along the way.

One of the shelves I added to an existing cabinet fell down, after it was loaded (but fortunately nothing broke). And so it goes, and by the end of the day, I wonder what it is I accomplished because there has barely been a dent in the tasks that loom.

That distraction has carried over into other things. I was going to St. Paul for four days of final cleaning, and forgot my daily meds. It was easier — and less time consuming — to call the pharmacy for a short-term “emergency” supply than it was to drive back to Rochester and get them. We had tickets for the theater, and when we were entering, our tickets were rejected by the electronic “device.” The usher looked at them and pointed out they were for the next week. How in the world did I do that? We had a good laugh over that one.

So far, I have only one regret about this move. That is that it may well be my last one and, if so, it is too bad that it is so complicated and nowhere near as enjoyable as all of the others have been!