Packing has been slow going. When I was younger I could stay up late doing repetitive tasks like packing but now I haven’t the enthusiasm for it. I kept waiting for it to happen, that burst of get-it-done energy, but it never came. I planned for mornings when I could sleep in an hour or two, but no, it’s been the same slow pace all along: a few boxes a day, for weeks.
There was an almost-running–out-of-tape emergency, but I handled it with the plodding efficiency of the middle-aged, taking the opportunity to count how many more boxes I’d need, and taking the opportunity to get more packing paper. I returned, repacked a few boxes in the basement, and got showered with mouse droppings when I pulled down the topmost box from a tall stack, but the reward was an old dish-pack full of paper. We won’t be running out of paper.
Over the summer and early fall, the dog Cherry has gotten old. It used to be that she’d stay close and always come when called, and then there were a few days where she seemed not to hear me unless I was pretty loud and making eye contact, but now she’s not hearing anything said by anyone. You can walk into a room where she is napping and offer dinner or treats or a walk and she doesn’t even wake up. You can open the door of her kennel and she may not come out. You can call her name from fifteen feet away, or five feet away and she doesn’t turn to you. She no longer seems to hear anything at all.
It must be strangely isolating to wake up in a silent world, and she seems hungrier and more shivery and worried than before, but also, she putters on our walks and is kind of disobedient. She eats weird stuff (I think it’s all poo of one kind and another) and takes her time about catching up with Captain and me, and takes shortcuts back to the house to sit and wait for us, rather than go the long way around.
It’s sad, because she now seems old and dried up and suddenly thin, and at 13 she is almost as old as any Vizsla we’ve had. She now barks more often with her gruffest, angriest loud bark, the one she used to save for very important things like strange kids playing in our front yard or an especially impudent squirrel.
Moving may be hard on her, and it will certainly be tough on the cat; he will have to be confined to a small bathroom while the movers are here loading. I have put yellow sticky notes on the empty cabinets (so I stop checking inside) and anything that belongs to the landlord.
I’ve had to go through the house and mark everything that belongs to the landlord with a pale yellow sticky notes that say “STAY” or “STAYS” depending on the grammar of my imagination as I scribble it. Sticky notes do not want to stick to dusty basement boxes. I will have to supervise the movers down there.
I got three estimates from local movers, the first and last came out similar in price and logistical considerations; both felt it needs to be a two-day affair. One offered one truck over two days, making two trips. The other suggested two trucks, loaded the first day and delivered the second.
The mover with the most expensive estimate showed up late and had more trouble rebooting his tablet (all three had Windows tablet problems of various kinds). He didn’t seem to count the boxes as carefully as the first or last one did, and he told me, “I’m not trying to sell you anything!” when he tried to sell me an insurance policy. He also commented on how many books we have; sure, we have a lot of books. I also have a lot of boots, but women are supposed to have a lot of boots, so he didn’t comment about the boots.
So I’m trying to figure out how to pack a musical saw and a fragile model of a human skull fashioned from flexible wire and the residents of TheFaraway Planet and about 40 bottles of cleaning liquids that the car nuts want to keep while the movers all insisted, “We don’t take liquids.”
We are all mostly water, movers. We are all mostly water.