If you’ve been reading for a while, you may know that Maddie and I lived together for two years in a “historical property” called “Eden Arms.” I put quotation marks around both of those phrases for two reasons. Reason 1: The property wasn’t actually historical; it was simply old. My landlord just used the excuse of it being a “historical property” to avoid having to make upgrades and repairs. Reason 2: We didn’t actually ever hear our place called “Eden Arms” until we were preparing to renew our lease for a second year.
Well, we moved out of “Eden Arms” this past weekend, and lucky for you, I’m here to share an account of this sweaty, miserable, mishap-filled move.
Let me begin by saying that our new condo is, according to Google Maps, 0.1 miles away from our old place. Seems simple, right?
Sunday, August 5
Maddie had to work from 2 pm – 10 pm on Sunday, but I had made the U-Haul reservation for 4 pm that day. Thank goodness for my friend Sean, who agreed to take me to pick up the moving truck (which I would then drive by myself) and help me load it with the entire contents of our place. Approximately three sweaty hours later, Sean and I had packed the U-Haul to the brim. The picture makes it seem like we carelessly threw everything in, but let me tell you, there was strategy. We filled every last crevice of that truck, including crevices that required me scaling over the tops of furniture. I should also point out that I backed the U-Haul into my yard from a busy intersection, avoiding two tree obstacles and leaving enough room for the ramp to come out. I’m practically a professional mover.
On Sunday night, Maddie and I slept on the floor of my bedroom. We had packed our beds, our couches, all of our clothes…anything remotely soft, cushioned or comfortable was in the back of a 14-foot U-Haul.
Monday, August 4
We woke up bright and early on Monday morning, backs and necks aching (and my arms aching from loading the truck the night before). I took off in the new whip to Uniquities, a furniture consignment store where I had to pick up my newly-purchased dresser. I met the shop owner at 8:30 am and she helped me load the dresser (my mother is cringing as she reads this because it’s actually a chest of drawers, but I prefer referring to it as my dresser) into the truck’s tiny space we’d left reserved for it. I then DROVE TO STARBUCKS IN THE U-HAUL TO PICK UP MORNING DRINKS. The downtown Starbucks in Gainesville has dismal parking, so I simply left the U-Haul in the middle of the aisle, with room to pass on both sides, as I went in.
Let’s flash forward now to about 10 am. We have cleaned our apartment and there is very little left inside of it. We have to be entirely cleared out by noon, and the moving truck has to be returned by 1 pm. We head to our new place (which is, by the way, on the second and third stories of a building) and what do we find? SQUATTERS. I’m being dramatic, but seriously…the tenants who were supposed to have already vacated the condo were still inside. With all their stuff. So, I did what any girl would do in my situation. I started placing all their belongings on the sidewalk outside. Chris and Michael, two of our guy friends that Maddie and I enlisted to help, looked around uncertainly. “Take their stuff outdoors,” I told them. I started vacuuming the feathers that were inexplicably all over the living room floor. Eventually, all of their stuff was outside and we were able to start unloading ours. The only issue: the carpet was disgusting. It needed to be professionally cleaned. So, we did what any sane people would do. We piled, from floor to ceiling, all of our belongings on any surface that wasn’t carpet. This includes the guest bathroom, a small pantry, and the kitchen.
Just before 1 pm, I drove the U-Haul back to the store to return it. Maddie followed so she could give me a ride home. I sat trapped beneath her television and mirror in the front seat for the car ride home (because obviously, in addition to a 14-foot moving truck, we filled both of our vehicles with stuff too). By this point, we were starving, soaked with sweat, irritated (those messy SQUATTERS), and beyond tired. Did I mention that I had to go into work after lunch that afternoon?
My angel of a boss let me leave the office an hour early (in addition to coming late) because she was so stunned by the absurdity of my situation. Thank goodness for this. Later that evening, when the carpet was dry enough to have furniture on it, Maddie and I began the laborious task of getting the couches inside. Maddie was in front, steering the couch around the corners, and I was in the back, putting all my weight into trying to shove this thing through our doorway.
We were convinced that the couch was stuck in the doorway and was not going to go inside. I was holding up the back end as Maddie put her end down and collapsed in laughter on the floor. “Take a picture of this for the blog,” I told her. I envisioned a picture of me, sad and lonely trying to wedge a square peg in a round hole. But, just when she got out the phone, I gave one final upward push and proclaimed, “I just Hulk-ed it!” The couch was inside and I was shout-grunting like a 300-pound man with ‘roid rage. Note: I did this in my dress from work. The above picture is my resulting satisfied smirk that the couch was, in fact, inside our unit.
The rest of the night, Maddie and I did our best to unpack and organize. As you can see, we still have a lot to do. But today is Friday, and that means the weekend is almost here! How else would I want to spend my weekend except unpacking and organizing? Let me see…I’d rather give a stranger a foot massage. I’d rather eat a soap-flavored jelly bean. I’d rather have the smell of wet dog perpetually under my nose for 24 hours. I would rather do just about anything than work in our place this weekend. But duty calls, and if you need me, I’ll be the one grumpily cursing the squatters and trying to make my bedroom look more like a twinkly dreamland and less like a war zone.