Saturday, June 21, 2014

A New Chapter, Part 2: Departure

The last post was in February. It's June now, the house has been fixed up, put on the market, and there is lots of activity but no offer yet. We remain hopeful that we'll get an offer before the next mortgage payment. I really do not want to make that mortgage payment. 
Today the movers come. 

I write that sentence then find I have to take a big breath. It's been an incredibly busy and stressful four months. We have said goodbye to so many THINGS. Yes. Americans in particular are very attached to their Things,  but I think non-Americans experience that attachment too. I'm not a sociologist or anything but my guess is that it's strongly related to the commercialism that comes with being a first world country. Throughout our lives we're fed a steady stream of images equating objects, and the acquisition of objects, with self-worth, who we are, and how we exist. Two big yard sales put that into pinpoint perspective. It's hard to shed that and the objects that we've accumulated. At one point I complained that I didn't like putting a price on my life. And we've continued to get rid of things in the house because it becomes a problem compounded (and calculated) by shipping by weight. Thank goodness fiber doesn't weigh that much.

Our mantra has been that of Charlie Crews: "I am not my car." 

We've also sent our dogs, Tasha and Maggie, to live in Maine with our eldest son and his girlfriend. I know they'll like the cooler weather. Maggie will, anyway. These two dogs have lived with us for 14 years and it has been so difficult to watch them leave. I wasn't sure I could do it. We could have taken them with us, and were in the process of doing so (there's no longer an automatic quarantine rule). But as time ticked by we realized that there was travel we wanted to do and allowing the dogs to live in a steady stable environment was better for them than our need to have them with us. Our lives will be less complicated for it, and in some years when the urge to spontaneously run off to France or Scotland or Wales or Germany or the English countryside for the weekend abates we'll look at getting new dogs again. In the meantime, we need to find an outlet for our need to communicate with dogs. Dog sit for friends. Run with a neighbor's dog. I'll try not to let it feel like a betrayal!

It's been Christmas in June for a few friends - fancy vinegars and furniture to Linnea & Matt, small appliances to Nick & Heather, MANY workshop tools to the robotics team at Norview High School, furniture for Kerry, bartering deals with Cheryl. Kent has become the CL Whisperer. Whatever he puts on there sells fast. It's amazing. Neighbors scored well at our two yard sales. I'm happy all these things made it to good homes, and a few thrift stores have benefited from our remaining cast-offs. 

Tonight we'll drive up to DC and spend a couple days there, then it's on to Baltimore for another few days before we fly out. The Baltimore leg was an unexpected addition but it's been a long time since we've seen the Inner Harbor, so we'll enjoy it because we can. 

I'm feeling quiet and a little sad, but today is another day when I cannot let myself feel too emotional because: movers. Therefore, I must see to the business at hand and keep my head. Stiff upper lip, etc. Keep calm and carry on...after I have my coffee!