My first car was a 1989 Chevrolet Caprice Classic. Picture every American police car and taxi cab from the 1980s and that's bascially it, except mine was baby blue. It was a lurching, roaring metal box on the front of which were slung two long rectangles for headlights. The fender wrapped under the grille and around the sides in a sort of pained grimace.
The thing about my job is that sometimes I am asked to find stock imagery for clients to use on their websites or collateral. Some might regard this as a mind-numbing task, but in this age of fiscal austerity, it's the closest thing to a company perk that I can get anymore.
Oh hey, I promised more crappy photos from our moving convoy and dadgum, I'll deliver.
By the time we groggily made it out the door of the hotel around 8:00 a.m. the following morning, the Future Farmers of America were gone. Mystery! Intrigue! Had they been there at all? Or had our road delirium caused us to hallucinate a gaggle of giddy teenagers?
True story: while driving all night from San Antonio, Texas, to his new assignment in Sacramento, California, when I was only a month or two old, my father hallucinated a giant diapered baby sitting in the middle of the highway, for which he immediately stomped on the brakes.
How about that? We made it to Colorado with minimal death and destruction.
I can't lie, it was really hard to leave our home. Harder than I imagined it would be. I had prepared myself for weeks, months, and when it finally arrived I was an absolute wreck. We spent the last night in our empty little house, save for our bed and the coffee maker, and when it was time to go to sleep I just stood in the barren living room and cried in the dark, and I couldn't really stop. I could barely function to pack the remainder of the items the following morning; the beau hustled around doing the majority of the work himself.
I'm walking down a driveway.
I'm nervous. I think I'm in the right place, but I'm not sure. As I approach a house that matches the description he gave me on the phone, he pushes open the screen door. He takes a step down the stairs as I take a step up, and we clasp hands in an awkward handshake, the beau and I.
In my mind's eye I can still see him slightly above me, with the sun behind his head; behind the house that I didn't know would become my home.
You guys are pretty tired of me talking about moving, yeah? Well fret not, for it's actually happening THIS VERY WEEK! Soon it will all be over, and I'll get right back to writing, I don't know, mopey observations about relationships or whatever the hell my schtick is anymore.
It's just hard NOT to talk about this move. It feels like life-changing times. Similar to having a baby, if the baby was furniture. And if the furniture didn't have to come out of my uterus. I'd also like to point out that my furniture doesn't poop.
So I guess the final weeks of preparing for out-of-state move are not unlike the final weeks of wedding planning? There are boxes everywhere, and lists of lists, and coordination of schedules and rentals, and feelings, and consumption of alcohol. There are also feelings, if I haven't already mentioned that.
We are dangling off a precipice and it's all of our own making, once again. We agreed to get married, and we agreed to wrap our possessions in cardboard and put them on a truck and drive them 1,113 miles away. How strange is that, by the way? Leveling your gaze at each and every novelty glass, throw pillow, and magazine and asking: "Do I like this enough to transport it to another time zone?"
Since January, in preparation for the move, we've been going through our stuff and donating or tossing the items we no longer want or need. "You know what would be fun?" I thought. "It would be fun to keep track of what we're getting rid of!"
Last Friday night I leaned across a narrow wooden arm rest and proffered my friend a Coke Zero into which I had poured white rum. I would have normally chosen whiskey, but the circumstances of a crowded theater prevailed. Once you have experienced the cheek-burning realization that every stranger in your immediate vicinity is delivering you some serious side eye, you learn to pack a liquor without a distinctive smell.
As my friend was passing the bottle back to me her fingers brushed mine. "Your hands are cold!" she mouthed over the opening credits as she grabbed my closest hand and held it between her own. And this simple action cut me down. I was a dog slowly rolling over, surrendering belly to the entire room.