We’re Here

So the move went as well as these things do. We managed to cram four suitcases, two laptop cases, my husband’s other kit bag, the three boxes of books and stuff we’d mailed to the hotel, the five bags of stuff leftover from the kitchen (our hotel room had a kitchen, ’cause we didn’t want to have to pay for restaurant food for that many weeks), plus other miscellaneous stuff we’d accumulated in the thirty-one days we were at the Seattle Alexis, all into a town car at one time so we only had to make one trip, yay. I had a heavy box on my lap the whole way, but luckily it was only about fifteen minutes.

We got there a little after 8am, and the movers arrived at around 9:15 or so, which wasn’t bad. I spent the next five hours or so at the kitchen counter with a bunch of inventory sheets in front of me, checking off numbered items while the four movers called said numbers to me. There were 362 items in the inventory. Less six or eight voids, that’s still over 350 items. Most of them were boxes. Most of the boxes have books in them.

According to the movers, most people have like one or two boxes of books, max. I can’t imagine living like that, but there you go; I always knew we weren’t normal.

Oh, and have I mentioned the room we’re using as a library (the master bedroom, ’cause really, do you need more room for your bed or your books?) is on the third floor? The guys really earned their pay that day. 🙂 Hey, one of the models we looked at had four stories, so the guys lucked out. I was sure to tell them that. [innocent humming]

But seriously, Seattle’s a fairly old (meaning developed) city, built on extremely uneven ground. There are slopes and ravines and various other non-horizontal stretches of ground pretty much everywhere. It doesn’t look full because there’s so much land with just trees on it, but it really is, and there are houses built in places which require like fifty stair-steps just to get from the sidewalk to the front door. (The movers charge extra for this, understandably.) But what this means is that new construction tends to be on very small chunks of land spotted here and there around town, and it tends to go vertical. Every condo and townhouse we looked at was at least three stories tall. That’s just how it is up here, with builders trying to max out the number of units per plot of land; they’re minimizing the footprint of each unit, and building up. I guess that means the movers up here are used to it. I’m just glad we weren’t doing this with a rental truck and a bunch of friends. 😛

So they hauled all our stuff in, wrapped up around 2:30 or so, and took off. I hadn’t had any sleep the night before, so I crashed, and woke up about fifteen hours later. That felt really good.

That night, I’d planned to unpack the kitchen, since it’d be nice to be able to start cooking again, with my own stuff.

[Hint for folks planning hotel stays who are thinking this kitchen thing sounds cool: I’ve now stayed in kitchen-rooms at three hotels, and the tools provided universally suck. There aren’t many, and the quality of what’s there is incredibly low. The Alexis doesn’t even provide bowls (cereal? soup? what’s that?) nor plastic containers for leftovers. If you’re going to be there longish-term, bring some of your own favorites, and/or be ready to go out and buy a few things.]

[Hint for hotel management: you have a standard inventory for your in-room kitchens, right? Post it on your web site, so guests know what to bring.]

Anyway, I started unpacking and discovered that we actually have less cupboard and drawer space than we did in Long Beach. :/ The pantry has a bit more space than our old pantry, so I can put some things which were in cupboards before into the pantry, but that’s still not enough. I’m thinking we’re going to have to get some (more) shelving units and/or one of those metal standing cupboard-things to go in the garage, for kitchen things I don’t use regularly. Right now, I’m sorting out things that can go in the garage, and figuring out where I want the things that have to live in the kitchen.

I also still need to sync my main computer (this one) with my laptop (which I was using for the last month and a half). When we arrived here from the hotel, I was carrying the laptop cases and such, so I put them in the closet in the computer room. There are some shelves in there, and I figured they’d be out of the way. Well, they were. They were also buried behind approximately three hundred pounds of boxes, which were back-filled into the closet as stuff was moved into the computer room. [headdesk] The spousal unit was nice enough to dig my laptop out for me last night, so I can transfer stuff across and start writing and cetera again, yay!

We have a new couch, and the washer and drier came, but the TV isn’t coming until Friday. It’ll be great to have it, though; Jim’s legally blind and has to be really close to see the TV. The one on order should be big enough for him to see while sitting on the couch with me, rather than sitting in a kitchen-type chair right up next to the set, which was what he was doing before. [crossed fingers]

Someone’s coming on Thursday from 3-Day Blinds [waves to neighbors] so we can get something up on the windows eventually. And we’re going to get like twenty bookcases (plus the overflow-kitchen-stuff cabinet/thingy for the garage) but haven’t actually ordered them yet.

And through it all we’ll be unpacking. I’m sure we’ll be doing that for a very long time. Heck, there are things we still had in boxes from our move to the condo, which just lived in their boxes because we never had space to unpack them and put them anywhere else. I’m sure it’ll be the same here with at least some things. When Jim retires and we move again O_O we’re going to need like 4000 square feet or something, LOL! We’re determined eventually to be able to put everything away, though, darnit!

In the eleven years we lived in the condo, I’d forgotten just how much work unpacking is. I can only do it for short periods of time before I get tired and my back starts getting really insistent about stopping and sitting for a while. I think it’s one of those things the subconscious deliberately buries, so people will be willing to move again some day. Hopefully I’ll have forgotten again by the time retirement rolls around. 🙂

Angie, heading back up to the kitchen to unpack another box

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Angela Benedetti lives in Seattle with her husband and a few thousand books. She loves romance for the happy endings, for the affirmation that everyone who's willing to fight for love deserves to get it and be happy with someone. She's best known for her Sentinel series of novels, the most recent of which is Captive Magic.