Saturday, July 16, 2011


We made it.

It wasn't without its moments of doubt. And possibly adventure. Or at least, moments of adrenaline dumping fear. Like when I was following my dad (who had the GPS) through a really, really tough area of Gary Indiana and he took a turn several car lengths ahead of me and then didn't realize I didn't see him turn so I *guessed* my way back onto I90.

From Jul 16, 2011

Lesson 1: The Uhaul follows the car.

It seems basic, right? Apparently it would be to most people who are not me. While I was speeding through thick Chicago traffic at 1 am trying to keep up with the Uhaul I realized that the tail lights/turn signals/ect are wayyy lower on the truck thanks to the lower loading deck of which the company is sooo proud. It's great when you're loading a washing machine. Really terrible when trying to follow through angry traffic.

Again, Lesson 1: The Uhaul follows the car.

Just repeating that for myself the next time we decide to move across the country.

Speaking of Chicago that's where I managed to run over something large and angry and then throw it up into traffic for the next unlucky fool to run over. It made a crazy large hole in my tire. I pulled over, got out the gear to change the tire and realized: I'm a woman, changing a tire at 2 am, surrounded by luggage, with out of state tags. In Tennessee 3 rednecks in pickup trucks would have stopped and offered to help. I suddenly wanted a gun. Digging in the trunk I found a baseball bat and put that next to me while trying to get the tire off, calling my dad (who was ahead of me! See lesson one.) and quietly cursing my husbands name for taking this stupid job in another stupid state and getting me stupidly stranded. Please note: I now know none of it was his fault. I kinda knew it then. But 2 am in Chicago brings out the worst in all of us.

Lesson 2: Carry a gun if you're gonna drive late at night. Don't travel late at night.

Thankfully somehow we'd gotton off track and ended up in Elk Grove Village where I know people! I know wonderful people! People you can call in the middle of the night and they will let you stay in their house and sleep in their children's beds (her kids weren't home) and on their sofa. Wonderful, amazing sorts of people named Tina. And dad managed to find an over priced tire repair kit at a gas station and fixed my tire!

Lesson 3: Carry fix-a-flat.

But we stayed with Tina a few hours, then were back up and on the road. We were loopy. At one point the kids starting singing "We've got cabin fe-ver!" from a Muppets movie. A few in our party had sick stomachs that required emergency pull overs. The guinea pig who was riding in my passenger seat glared at me, took his salt block in his mouth, threw it over his shoulder and chattered his teeth. Then he started throwing bedding. I wanted to throw bedding too. We stopped for gas an hour and a half from Eagle River and the kids watched a car wash from the trunk of my car and laughed like they were seeing the best. movie. ever.

Lesson 4: A move across several states will make parts of the bible come to life for you.

But in the end, we made it. I wanted to cry. I parked the car and didn't get back in it for several days. Derek was happy to see us and greeted us with open arms but my unwashed exausted self wanted to cry and stomp my feet. Instead I let his friends unload the truck and wondered why we'd moved into this tiny house. Tiny, tiny house.

But after a night of sleep, a shower, a bit of relaxation I realized the beauty here. The sky is a completely different shade of blue from anything I've ever seen before. It's so deep it's almost navy. The birch trees have bark so contrasting they look like black and white photos with touched up shaking leaves in bright shades of emerald and gold. Ferns grow everwhere. The house has anchient roses under a window in the front and daylilys growing wild.

I can see and hear no one. No dogs barking. No road noise at all. Just wind and about 4 cars passing a day. It's a far cry from our house in Gallatin with neighbors who couldn't help but know what you were doing, the road noise of Hwy 31 sometimes so loud we had to raise our voice to speak over it, the neighborhood dogs barking.

Outside feels like a beautiful vacation. The past few days the temps have been in the mid 60's. One day it was in the upper 80's and the locals were complaining. I caught a woman at the post office today fanning herself and quietly giggled to myself.

Coffee off the sunroom which is now the art/craft room is like being slowly unwound. I know the winters will be long and harsh but having a chance to be outside without the humidity thick enough to slice is a welcome change.

Lesson 5: If you feel like you should go, go.

This move hasn't happened without some bumps. (As a side note, I'm pretty sure one of the movers stole my missing iPod.) But everything came together so well. So seamlessly. I coudn't deny that I felt lead to this move. This morning as I sat snoozing in my grandfathers recliner looking out at trees slowly swaying in a breeze it hit me: My husband has found a job he loves, in a place that feels like a vacation, for enough money we can rent here and own a house in another state. For most of our marriage this wouldn't have been possible. I paid cash for a dinning table and love seat that we needed for the new place and didn't feel sick spending the money. It was budgeted and planned for. What an amazing feeling.

The only downside is this: There's no high speed internet at the new house. To connect a phone I have to wait a week and a half for someone to come and physically turn it on. So that means few blog posts. But we have a plan including me and a local coffee shop. And a weekly coffee budget. So if you can hang with me on this I'll keep you informed as we explore our little town of Eagle River. So far it's truely a blessing.


Jennifer said...

Richard says "no pictures, when is she gonna put pictures"... lol I don't think he got the no internet part... or the dial up. But if you ever get the chance, we'd love to see some pictures! Happy to hear that you're settling in nicely!

Derek said...

she had (has) a photo to go with each section but the offline blog editor doesn't do photos (i guess 'cos it has no way to know the proper path to the photos till they are actually uploaded) and when she got around to posting this entry the coffee shop's upload stream was giving us fits so she did the one photo and called it quits. she may come back and edit it later with more.