The BIG Move

Standard

moving-cartoonAfter Mucking Out the Memories, I continue to trudge forward into the final stages of my downsizing saga. I’ll exit this series with a dishonorable discharge for the actual move itself. At this point, I hadn’t unclenched my back-teeth for two months and my neck felt like a cement post.   After I continue to trudge forward into the final stages of my downsizing saga. I’ll exit this series with a dishonorable discharge for the actual moveitself. At this point, I hadn’t unclenched my back-teeth for two months and my neck felt like a cement post.

The right moves: I did all the requisite things, like getting several estimates and performing a surgical evaluation of each moving company. I avoided the shady list of truck-gorillas whose reputations screamed – you pack ’em, we crack ’em! Instead, I chose three large international moving firms who I thought would be well versed in the art of changing spaces – and in the delicate handling of downsizer-shock and aging boomers-in-motion.

The wrong moves: In the final analysis, my selection wasn’t based on the cheapest bid or the strongest company – but foolishly on charisma, enthusiasm and promises. I was especially taken in by one particularly skilled salesperson, with a fresh young face and flawless pitch. She made my much-dreaded move sound so blissfully effortless. 

All hat and no cattle: Like a moth to the headlights of a moving van – I fell dreamily under the spell of this fast-talking wonder-woman. She said all the right things and I was eagerly sucked into the great abyss of her promises; pain-free packing and professional transport. But once the contract was signed, I soon found out that my fresh-faced girl, along with her company…was all truck and no wheels…all box and no cardboard…all pitch and no punch…well, you get my drift.

Now let’s be fair: I’m sure all moving companies are not the same. But the one I selected said it prided itself on customer service. And they were polite – I’ll give them that. It was the follow through and quality of their work that was a dismal failure. The company’s human resource department should be very proud. Every staff member I encountered was exceptionally friendly and courteous, while they lied like hell, ignored my instructions, threw my furniture around like frisbees and stuffed my treasured wedding dress into a jam cupboard.

The Highlights:

1…Planned ahead: The survival kit we packed to take with us in the car was invaluable. We included things like: bedding for the first night, linens, kettle, cups, wine, glasses, paper towels, clothes, wine, pills, toiletries, address book, t-towels, wine, dish soap, cleaning supplies etc. The bottom line, is bring the wine!

2…Followed the rules: We were careful to determine the condo rules before moving day and communicated these in detail to our mover. This included approved moving days and times, elevator reservation forms, maximum truck size and restrictions to the delivery access route. The mover ignored my instructions and our truck was turned back at the gate. It was too large to access the loading docks at our condo building. I’d like to hurl, that fresh-faced girl!

3…Held our breath: As the movers carried in our belongings, stuff was falling out of cartons because the cheap packing tape they used had come unglued. There were several deep gouges in our furniture, broken knobs on a custom hutch and my writing desk had been split open and glued back together. Such careless work! I went berserk!

4…Bossed the crew: Like a traffic cop, I directed movers to place furniture where I wanted it. I had them stack most of the boxes in areas less-used, like the spare bedroom and dining room. We kept our bedroom and kitchen as clear as possible. Don’t eat and sleep, under a heap! 

5…Held our ground:
After unloading (a day late) the movers presented us with forms to sign. Despite the pressure, we signed for delivery only – and not for damages. It took us weeks to check everything as we unpacked – and then we duked it out for several months to settle our claim. Oh happy day! We made them pay!    

Give me a break! The morning after the move we ignored the mess – and took off for my sister’s cottage. The stacks of bloated boxes didn’t go away while we were gone. But we had time to escape the madness and refresh our sanity.

Reality bites: When we returned home, my desk was still in pieces on the floor, the knobs were still hacked off my dining room hutch, we had nowhere to put our big-ass TV, and my bunched-up wedding dress was still jammed in the jam cupboard. But I kept my chin up as I knuckled down and chanted my coping-mantra…this too shall pass…like noxious gas! 

See you between the lines and on Twitter @PatSkene                   

8 responses »

  1. Hey Patti, love the picture! Very good tips here, especially about choosing the moving company and also what to do with the stuff when you arrive at the new place. I haven’t moved in over 30 years and suddenly remember why, thanks to your blog, a great memory jog.

    But when (if?) I do move again, I will check your advice very carefully. I especially liked the part about the wine, glasses, and escaping to your sister’s cottage!!

    Like

  2. Patti….You have outlined a very comprehensive “surgical analysis” of the whole moving event.
    When you move all of your personal possessions from one place to another, you go through the various stages of sorting out what to move, carefully packing and then re-organizing the placement of everything in the condo. This in itself is a significant process. It’s similar to having a surgical procedure done…no matter how one prepares and plans ahead….it is traumatic for the patient(s).
    The value of your lessons-learned “Moving On” is very positive. In the end, you overcame obstacles on your move and the likelihood of repeated mistakes will no doubt be lessened.

    Like

  3. After reading “Moving On” I know that I don’t want to move or have “movers” at all…….agree with last blog……”let the kids muck it out instead”!

    My favourite advice of yours Patti is in the “planning ahead” paragraph where your survival kit was packed with linens…wine…..kettle….wine……bedding…….wine…….glasses……wine…..or do I have you packing too much wine?? Works for me!

    Blanche and I seem to think along the same lines!

    I am enjoying your blog Patti and can’t wait for the next one.

    Like

  4. You certainly were brave to attempt this move in the first place. And you have a great attitude toward all the adverse things that happened. You must be some kind of a butterfly to look at things as you do.I enjoy all of it.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s