Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Melt Down

Moving days are always loads of fun.

For those who don’t know me, let me tell you something about myself. I don’t accept help easily. Having learned at an early age that I would need to take care of myself, I have become fiercely independent where all aspects of my life are concerned. I had a boyfriend once who told me the most frustrating thing about me was the fact that I wouldn’t let anyone help me. The most frustrating thing about him was he would get drunk and leave his toupee in the bushes.

When I moved to Rockville, the only help I needed was for my friend, Mindy, to watch Serena on the day the movers arrived. By 4:00 pm that day, I was all moved in, and every box was emptied. I couldn’t ask her to watch Esmeralda because they don’t like each other – a long story for another blog.

However, something told me this move would be different. My brother offered to help me on the Friday before the movers came, and I accepted his offer. He was really going out of his way, driving up to Rockville – a three-hour drive from Newport News – to spend about three hours, helping me cart my electronics and clothes in his truck to Jessup. This was a huge help because the one thing that takes the most time during a move is emptying the wardrobe boxes while the movers wait and charge by the hour. I decided with Esmeralda with me, it would be a nightmare if I waited until the official move day to do this.

Also, for those who don’t know me, my clothes are big and my shoes bigger – size 14. When I travel, I cannot take more than two pairs of shoes or I will need another suitcase. My brother then drove home after helping me in a series of thunderstorms, making a three-hour drive a four-and-a-half-hour drive! I cannot express my appreciation for what he did. He said it was fun.

I cannot imagine spending a few hours with me, ordering you around to put this there and that over here fun!

Did I also tell you I like being in charge and giving orders? They say every eleventh person born is a leader. I consider myself a number eleven. Actually, “they” didn’t say it; Lucy said this to Charlie Brown. The crap I remember.

My friend, Frank, or as I refer to him, the "Martha Stewart of McLean" (he doesn’t know I refer to him this way because I just thought this up), called me on Friday night and asked if I needed help. I said, “Oh, I'm fine; everything is packed. My brother helped me move all my clothes and electronics today. He was a huge help. The movers will be here in the morning, and they are the best.” He decided he better help and would be at my apartment at 8:00 am. I accepted his offer. Wow, was I maturing?

There is also something else I must share. I like things to happen on time. Not early, never late, but always on time! I can be a real pain in the ass about this. I also had a boyfriend say he couldn’t point out my faults because I would beat him to the punch. He was a nose candy freak who couldn't achieve an orgasm. There is an entire list of adjectives to describe me, and I add to it more than anyone. For the purposes of this story: obsessive, overbearing, controlling, irritating – just to name a few.

Saturday morning came, and the movers and Frank both arrived five minutes early. I was not ready! I needed five minutes to get the apartment concierge to open the loading dock and lock the elevator. She was late! Frank came up, and I started barking, “Take the laundry basket and granny cart to the car!” I have a granny cart because my apartment was two blocks (not kidding) from the parking garage. Frank didn’t say a word and did what I told him. He was so calm.

In 90 minutes, the movers were all loaded up. I used the same company that moved me to Rockville, Great Scott Moving, and one of the guys also helped with that move. They are the best movers, so I have to give them a plug!

Now, all I had to do was lock up and get in the car and go, so I could arrive before they did. As I was pulling away with Frank behind me, I saw the moving truck ahead of us.

They arrived at the house five minutes before we did. Oh no. Not early, never late, always on time!

Now, the nervous wreckedness began. I immediately opened the house and showed them where everything was to go.

The problem with an empty space and a space with furniture is one looks so much bigger than the other! Seriously, I didn’t know this? Apparently, other people do.

Here is something else you may not know about me. I am a bit claustrophobic. I don’t panic in elevators, but I don’t handle tight rooms, especially full of people, very well. The front bedroom, if you can call it that, is 7’ x 12’. My original plan for setting up was not working, and suddenly, I was in the middle of this little room with a bunch of boxes, two book cabinets that did not fit and a desk that was in the way.

I don’t know if you have witnessed a meltdown, but you have not lived until you have seen one of mine.

First, I started spinning around – kind of like Linda Carter turning into Wonder Woman, except without the blur or the magic bracelets. Then, I started flailing my hands. Then, I started a combination of whining and kvetching accompanied by high-pitched sounds that can be heard miles away by rodents and birds of prey. I kept repeating, “Nothing fits! Nothing fits! This isn’t going to work! This isn’t going to work!”

Can you picture all of this?

While Frank was considering calling a shuttle from Saint Elizabeth’s, my phone rang. It was the cable guy. He was fifteen minutes early! They are never early. I told him, “I am not ready for you! Give me fifteen minutes! We just arrived!” He said no problem; he would go get a bite to eat.

Then I melted even more. Thank God for Frank. He said, “Just step out of the room. Come over to the kitchen, and let’s tackle something else first. Breathe. Breathe. Count to ten.”

I stepped out of the office. In about 15 minutes, I was fine.

We unpacked everything else in about three hours. Then, we took the oversized book cabinets out to the curb, put a “FREE” sign on them, and they were gone in less than an hour.

Problem solved.

Ironically, the appeal of this house was finally having a real office space. Who knew such a gift would send me over the edge?

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