08 February 2013

Moving Out

I’m back and welcome back to you. We made it! For better or worse, we’re now living on a farmstead in Wisconsin-land.

Wife Vicki and Boss-the-cat arrived a few weeks before I did. They traversed the 900 miles in a rented 22 foot truck, car attached, with one overnight motel stop. On arrival, with lots of family help, Vicki began immediately to unload the truck and assemble our garage-topping apartment. (Yes, of course we’ll get to those unpacked boxes and furniture downstairs.)

Vicki’s arrival at the farm. (Can you believe
I forgot to take photos of loading the truck?)

I remained behind until our house was ready for listing by our Realtor. My days were devoted to tossing, cleaning and shepherding an electrician, plumber, painters and carpet installers for the final touches.

Although the initial and final nights of my adventure were spent in a sleeping bag on an air mattress, I experienced the ultimate of luck and exquisite timing. I was invited to house sit by friends who lived 20 minutes away and happened to be traveling while our house was being refitted. Escaping the odors and mess every evening was a life saver, though I continued to use the sleeping bag.

Our once filled living room, painted
and drapes removed. (Copyright 2013
Metropolitan Regional Information Systems)

The Final Day

The morning before my departure, I panicked. It wasn’t trepidation about Wisconsin or the sorrow of saying farewell to our house and neighborhood after 16 years; it was the realization that I could never fit everything into my vehicle, a small SUV. After taking stock of the scattered piles and residuals, I quickly schlepped whatever I could bear to part with to the curb for the trash pickup, which fortunately was occurring that morning. (Who knew we had 30 rolls of toilet paper?)

The emptied, ready-for-sale house.
(Copyright 2013 Metropolitan Regional
Information Systems)

Despite the reduction, my dread reached new heights that afternoon. I discovered more that I had somehow overlooked--boxes of tissues, bags of clothes hangers and, worst of all, cleaning supplies, which I should have taken to the county’s hazardous waste collection station when I delivered Vicki’s garden chemicals.

I agonized about leaving trash at curbside in my absence and finally decided I had no choice. I began stuffing a mammoth trash bag for the next pickup, which was only three days away. I poured bleach down the drains and squished the emptied containers into the bag, but the other chemicals (spot removers, carpet cleaners etc) had to come with me and take up precious space.

At 0-dark hundred the next morning, while angling my suitcase, deflated air mattress and remaining items into the car for my departure, I could fit no more. Surrendering, I toted another plastic bag to the curb. This final bag contained only the sleeping bag, which I would never use again, ever. I then started the car, set the GPS destination and drove off through a heavy rainfall.

Wrap Up

Although I expected to do a motel overnight along the way, the drive went smoothly and I endured for the 14 to 15 hours. (Kids, don’t try this on your own.) Next week I’ll offer my initial impressions of life atop the garage on the Wisconsin farmstead. I hope you’ll stop back. Thanks for stopping by.


  1. I am going to miss your old house!!! Glad you all made it safely to Wisconsin... So many adventures to look forward to!

  2. Warren: Have fun in your new digs. I too live above what used to be a garage (now an apartment). I downsized to give my daughter and her 3 girls more room. Less work to do now.

  3. miriam newell biskin---sounds like a long successful journey. glad you arer safe, sound and settled. Hugs, miriam