Well, that escalated quickly. I wrote a post about manifesting a relocation on a Friday. We found a place we really liked on Sunday morning, called about it after lunch, went to see it at 2 PM, and decided to apply for it when we got home. The landlord pulled the ad and we had finished filling out the paperwork Monday night.
That was the easy part.
On Tuesday I thought I would get ahead of the curve. I went to the local moving company, conveniently located five minutes from our apartment, and scheduled a pair of movers. I brought home some boxes to get an early start. Then I called around to see if any of our friends could watch our pets for the day.
There are a bunch of parts to this move that I never saw coming, and factors that make it very lucky that I took action as early in the process as I did.
First, scheduling the move. It turns out that our new building is about half owner-occupied and it has a homeowner’s association. There is also a really strict procedure about moving into the building, and a formal Welcoming Committee. We don’t just pick up the keys. We have to tell people when we’re coming so they can put up the pads in the elevator.
It’s a good thing I asked, because it also turns out that I need to apply for a parking permit from the City for the moving van.
Can you imagine, showing up in a moving van with everything you own, only to get a ticket? Or find that there is nowhere within a half mile that you’re allowed to park?
Picture this. The parking lot for the building is underground, and there’s no clearance for a moving van to get down there. Even a pickup truck loaded up for a move might struggle. The only parking is in front of the building on a busy street on a major bus route. It’s not like a suburban move with a driveway or a large apartment complex parking lot.
Next, we’re moving in summer while school is out and the weather is predictable. That makes it a busy time. The ONLY reason the moving company fit me in is because we live in a studio apartment and we don’t have much furniture. They were going to try to give me a Thursday when I’m teaching a workshop in the middle of the day. We’re taking a Friday. Saturday and Sunday, so not happening.
Honestly I could see their schedule board from the front desk, and it looked like the entire month is already booked up.
Going down the list, what are our pets going to do on moving day? It’s not safe for them to be out and around while two dudes are hauling heavy stuff and loading a dolly. They just don’t need that kind of stress, and neither do the movers.
Ah, but, everyone I called will be out of town that week. No can do.
I have a boarding option for my parrot. The dog is more complicated. There is a doggy day care close to the new place, but it has a really elaborate application process. He has to have proof of three different vaccinations, which is great because he actually got kennel cough a few years ago from one place that didn’t require shots. I had to schedule an appointment so my husband can take him in there and prove that he can get along with other dogs. Also, they only accept dogs under 30 pounds, and we’re lucky because he happens to be under 25. I don’t know what we would do if we had a large breed; we might have had a lot of trouble even finding a rental house, much less an apartment in this region, with a big dog.
This is the new reality of a city move for us.
Oh, and, by the way, moving day is nine days from now. Countdown begins.
Why are we moving in such a hurry anyway? Partly because our current living situation has been destroying our quality of life. We’ve tried multiple times, and failed, to get any kind of corrective action. We came back from vacation and realized that we truly couldn’t take it any more.
Next, because we have a trip planned for our ten-year wedding anniversary, and we have a chance to get all this done before we even leave for our trip.
Ultimately, because we could hardly believe that our dream apartment was available and we know how hard it is to find a place. Any place! Much less a place where we can see ourselves being happy.
The new building has a long list of strict rules. A lot of them are subjective decisions about quality of life and noise level. When we walked in from the street and the lobby door shut behind us, it was like entering a walled garden. Middle of the afternoon on a summer weekend, and it was hushed. Most of the tenants (and owners) are middle-aged professionals like us. We’ll be on the top floor, no neighbors stomping overhead unless Santa comes early.
This rushed and complicated move is a sign of privilege, and it’s also a sign that I’ve done this a lot and I know how to make it happen. We save half our income (or at least we did over the last couple of years), so we can afford to overlap rent by a couple of weeks and pay for a half-day with professional movers. (It’s just under $500 if you want to know). We passed the credit check, also the result of ten years of frugal marriage.
Mostly, we can pull off a quick and complicated move because we hardly own any stuff! The less space you take up, with every hundred square feet below 1200, the easier it is to find a place. If you can get below 800 square feet, you can live in most places in the world, many of them with a better view than you have today.
*** Extra complication ***
Jurisdictional dispute between the city and state transportation department, still figuring out exactly who can issue the parking permit for the moving van
*** a learning extravaganza! ***
I've been working with chronic disorganization, squalor, and hoarding for over 20 years. I'm also a marathon runner who was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and thyroid disease 17 years ago.
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