Tuesday, September 8, 2009

We Have Moved

Hard to believe, but we have been in our new house for over a week. Moving is a terribly traumatic experience, filled with a ton of work, paperwork, boxes, newsprint, and high expenditures. But it is finally finished and we are mostly settled in to our new house in suburban Atlanta.

Remember over a year ago I posted about us buying an as-yet unbuilt house. Well it took over a year with lots of bumps along the way but the house was finally finished and we were finally able to sell our previous house at an amount that fit our needs. So on Friday August 28 we simultaneously sold one house and bought another.

During the week leading up to the sale we started packing. With such a large house and all the stuff we had we knew we weren't going to be able to move ourselves. But there were some things we wanted to pack ourselves or that were easy to pack (like books). Our library took over 25 small boxes, each one of them filled to the top with books. Then on Friday the real fun began. The packers arrived and began wrapping and boxing up everything in sight. We designated a "no pack" zone for all the stuff that we wanted to have over the weekend (things like car keys, clothes, toothbrushes, ... insignificant items like that). My wife stayed at home to deal with the packers while I went to close on the old house, then later to close on the new house. The sale of our house had an extra clause that allowed us to retain possession of the property until 6 p.m. Saturday. This gave us time to move out while still giving us the funds we needed to close on the new house.

Then on Saturday the big rig—tractor trailer—arrived with 6 guys and the loading began. It took them 9 hours to load everything in to the trailer. And at hour 6 (3 p.m.) our cleaning crew arrived to get the house ready for the buyers. We knew we had a 6 p.m. deadline and initially I thought we would easily make it. But it was pretty close. They went right up to the deadline and finally buttoned up the trailer at 5:55. Unfortunately that left no time to unload anything at the new house. So with most our earthly possessions packed on to a trailer we arrived at the new place with little more than a large suitcase, toiletries, food, and the chemicals that the movers refused to touch. We grabbed pizza from a nearby Johnny's and our first meal was on the floor of the kitchen with paper plates and cups. The cleanup was certainly easy! After dinner I drove out to a nearby Target and bought pillows, blow up mattress, and sleeping bag for our daughter. That night we "camped in" our new house.

Sunday morning the tractor-trailer arrived and the unloading began. Who knew we had so much stuff? Fortunately the unloading didn't take nearly as long as the loading. But with three possible points of entry—front door, garage, and basement—it was difficult for the two of us to direct traffic as necessary. We were also trying to keep track of our 6 year old. The garage stuff came off first, including her scooter. So we sent her on her scooter down to the cul-du-sac (about 3 houses away) to play. About 30 minutes later a white car drove by heading for the cul-du-sac. Since we are near the end of a street, cars are not a common sight. I yelled down to my daughter to get out of the street, then noticed that the scooter was still in the middle of cul-du-sac. "No problem," I thought, "there's plenty of room for the car to get around the scooter." As we all watched in puzzlement, the car, doing about 5 miles an hour, slowly ran right over the scooter. It made such a loud crunching noise that I was certain the gentleman would stop and get out to see what he hit. But no, he just kept right on going as if nothing had gone wrong. It was truly surreal. As he passed by our house again I wanted to stop him and give him a earful for running over my daughter's scooter. But I figured either he was cold and heartless or he was deaf, and in both cases me talking to him would do no good. So as he drove by I merely said out loud to those around me, "I hope it broke his car." The scooter was bent beyond usability and had to be thrown away.

And about hour 3 it started to sprinkle. Then it started to rain. Then it started to pour. Unloading stuff in the rain is no fun. Between the breaks in the rain, blankets, and plastic coverings we managed to get everything in the house around mid-afternoon. We said goodbye to our movers and began the never-ending task of unpacking.

Before the move I called Comcast Cable to have our service (with internet) moved to the new address. But they couldn't find the address in their system. Since it is a new neighborhood they weren't sure if they could even give me service. The lady said she would put in a request for a survey. That was almost two weeks before the move. Even after we moved in Comcast was not able to tell me if I was worthy enough to be their customer. This forced me to use AT&T DSL for an internet connection as I can't be without that for very long. But for the television service we waited, just in case Comcast made up their collective mind.

On Tuesday we got our telephone and DSL internet connection. But the DSL didn't work. Investigation on the part of the folks at AT&T revealed that the installer did it wrong. So someone came back out Wednesday to reinstall the DSL line. By Wednesday evening I had internet working and fully functional.

By Friday I was sick of waiting for Comcast to grow a brain, so I called DirecTV. They are coming out Wednesday (tomorrow) to install a dish for me. It is not my first choice, and it requires a 2 year commitment. But I have a house full of TV addicts and they must be appeased.

In a week we (my wife, mostly) unpacked everything on the main floor and upstairs. All that remains is the basement toys and workroom. Besides rediscovering all of our belongings, we now have a very tall pile of cardboard boxes and a growing mound of trash. The amount of newsprint used to pack our stuff was enough to support a small newspaper for a year. I couldn't see just throwing it out so I made several trips to a nearby recycling bin to dispose of it all.

But with so many other things demanding my time, I still haven't put up towel racks and mirrors. That is today's assignment.

No comments: