It’s night two in my new apartment and I’m sitting here in the dark. The power has gone out again. By my count, it’s happened at least three times since yesterday evening, when the movers finally left and I was on my own. There is no apparent explanation. This on top of (a) the elevator being out all morning, which meant I had to CARRY my two dogs up 6 flights of stairs – I am in such terrible shape, it took me literally a half hour to recover – and (b) the announcement today that there would be no hot water between 9 and 12 tomorrow. Ah, high-rise living!
Believe me, this is no palace, but I was just happy to have a place that accepted my dog (yes, I know, I have TWO dogs, not to mention four cats, but they only KNOW about the one dog at the moment). Yes, the dogs bark at every little noise, and have carried on who knows how long on the two brief occasions I’ve left them alone in the apartment. But it’s certainly not a third-world country with random power outages due to crumbling infrastructure. Or maybe that IS what’s causing the problem.
The last ten days or so have been a stress-inducing nightmare. I’ve been literally worrying about EVERYTHING, with the possible exception of actual billable (and bill-paying) work, for which I am enormously grateful, although I will suffer the consequences on my next payday. I packed and cleaned, and yet there remained so much to still be packed (by the movers) and cleaned (by me, eventually – I’ll probably head over to my house tomorrow and take the dogs with me – to wash some floors and leave the place at least in somewhat decent shape before all the construction nonsense begins (who knows when). Now that all the utilities have been – or are in the process of being – turned off, if my contractor would only call me back . . .
The move began technically on Monday, when I brought Munchie and two of the cats over to my ex-husband Ian’s house. I had washed all of my sheets and blankets and towels, given that I would only have access to a shared and ancient washing machine and dryer combo once I moved in, so the two remaining cats, Gizmo and I shared a single blanket. I tossed and turned, barely sleeping during the five hours I was actually in bed, having stayed up way too late and needing to wake up early to bring the remaining menagerie to Ian’s and be back to the house by the time the movers showed up at 9 a.m. Fortunately for me, Ian decided to stay home from work – again, for which I was hugely grateful – which alleviated my concerns about dealing with the animals and also the movers’ second stop at his house to drop off my daughter’s bed and some other items of furniture that she was planning to take down to HER new apartment in West Virginia later this summer.
Movers came right on time, got a parking spot (amazingly) directly in front of my door, and the packing and moving began. But the process of doing so unearthed a shameful amount of dust and animal hair – so much for all my pre-move cleaning! – for which I kept apologizing. (Hence the aforementioned clean-up required tomorrow.)
Moving was the easy part, comparatively, although it rained all damn day. (Shout out to Jim Laria and his team at On-Site Logistics!!) Now I am left with boxes upon boxes of a mind-boggling amount of (sorry – there’s no other word for it) SHIT, some of which I will probably not even unpack, so I need to find a corner to stack picture boxes and crates of books and journals and other decorative nonsense, including at least a dozen each of wine glasses and coffee mugs, neither of which I have ever used (or plan to use in the future). Plus I don’t have a couch at the moment – I left my cruddy, broken-down old sectional, matching chair and coffee table behind as unsalvageable – so I at least need to clear a large enough space for a queen-sized Jennifer Convertibles sleeper sofa by the time it gets delivered next week. I’m almost glad they couldn’t get it here right away: Where would I possibly put it??
And then there was the issue of getting the animals in without creating a scene. Since I only have two cat carriers, I had to do it in shifts. Again, Ian was able to help to get everyone settled in, and as far as I know, we were not detected. The dogs, of course, were going to be seen (and heard) eventually, so I had a story all worked out for how I would explain the existence of TWO dogs when I only indicated ONE in my lease application. But now the dogs are out of the bag, so to speak, with the blackout and my hallway chat with some neighbors while they carried on inside. “Yes, those are my little noisemakers,” I had to admit. And you know what? No one seems to care. One of my neighbors (I think – she didn’t leave a note, but she’s the only one I told about my volunteering at the shelter) even dropped off a bag of old towels, I assume as a donation.
Last night I took a Tylenol PM for my aching back and to help me sleep, even though I figured I was so exhausted sleep would not be an issue. I was wrong. I basically woke up every hour – I don’t have a curtain on my bedroom window so it was actually quite bright – and every time my eyes opened, there was a new cat on my pillow. This is unusual, because back in the old house, usually only the dogs and Raven slept in the bed. But I guess Raven was willing to share her space and the dogs weren’t freaking out, so Savannah, Luna and even old lady Mimi took turns sleeping with me. It was quite nice, actually, in a “security blanket” kind of way, even if I wasn’t doing much actual sleeping. (Needless to say, I missed my usual Tuesday blog posting, but I’ve permitted myself a two-day pass.)
Today I’ve spent the day getting organized, going to an ill-timed dentist appointment to get my dentures fixed, dropping off my old cable equipment (which the installation guy was supposed to take with him yesterday, but didn’t) and picking up a few necessary items at the grocery store (like a broom). I’ve made some headway with the boxes, and now I’ve been able to catch up on my blogging, thanks to a battery-operated laptop, although I won’t be able to post until the electricity – and the Internet – returns. I was just about to make myself some dinner when the power went out, so I’m a little hungry, but I think I could afford to miss a meal. Maybe I’ll just take this opportunity to GET SOME REAL SLEEP!!
I’ve been telling people who sympathize with me about how tough the next few months are going to be, “Well, I guess I just have to think of it as an adventure!” So far, that’s pretty much what’s it’s been, but I certainly wouldn’t mind a little old-fashioned normalcy.