Posted by: dougery | July 30, 2010

Getting Away from et al. (Part One?)

Been a long time, been a long time, been a long, lonely-lonely-lonely… er, long time since I’ve typed some words and sent them out into the inner-webs, but there are reasons for this. Big, Grand, Life Changing reasons. L and I have bid adieu to the belle of the Midwestern ball (Chicago) and decided to put down some roots (gross) in an entirely different part of the country. The Berkshires, which, as one friend succinctly put it is “Good for Nature.”

It is that, and then some; fields, woods and handsome. L has accepted a job opportunity at the Clark Institute of Art (at which she’s just today finished her first full week) and I have joined the illustrious ranks of the Un-Employed (queue dramatic, yet somewhat melancholy music). Currently, we are squatting in a ski lodge, the longtime L family winter stronghold and foliage viewing hideaway at Mt. Snow, the most obviously named peak of rock since Mt. Tall and Loogetdatderbiggun.

Moving roughly ten thousand miles (emotional estimate) was not as simple as the change of Chicago scenery L and I have made several times over. We weren’t just schlepping our belongings up Lakeshore Drive or west of the Eisenhower or beneath the El tracks down near the Smelt’n’Spray. No, for this drive we buckled down and hired movers, the single greatest and worst decision L and I have ever made. ‘That’s not logical,’ the Vulcan part of your brain might be telling you, perhaps even with a ‘Captain,’ at the end if your interior monologue has any respect for rank (and for your sake I certainly hope it does). Oh, but it is not only logical but inevitable. Obsoive:

Movers are awesome in that they like, lift stuff and hall it around and basically do all the work. Except, they don’t do any of the actual packing or cleaning or determining what should be gotten rid of or bought to protect other more fragile things or take the Jeep to the mechanic to have it’s fuel pump or brakes or tires replaced or say goodbye to all your friends and coworkers or even maintain a proper schedule. It’s the latter that drove L and I completely bonkerville.

First, they were going to be there on Thursday. “Thursdee, Thursdee no problem,” the mover guy said in an eccentric accent in my head. Fine, ‘Thursdee’ it is. Except then they called and said they were actually coming on Wednesday at 1pm, so we’d better, like, get off from work and let them in. We did so, only to be told Wednesday morning that “Psyche! Just kidding!,” the truck had blown a spec on it’s end-line girder and was in the shop, Milwaukee style. And it stayed there the rest of the day, and all of Thursdee as well, when we were told to be ready at the “butt-ass” of dawn Friday, because they wanted to make up some lost time. Yet somehow dawn Friday became Thursdee at 10:15pm.

L was in her jam-jams reading a book and I had just fired up the ole laptop for another episode of the West Wing. The fanfare of the intro was playing when L tapped my shoulder. “Someone is at the door,” she hissed as I pried out my earbuds. Maybe it was a burglar or (hopefully even) a hamburglar. Maybe it was a drunk neighbor saying goodbye. No, it was the movers. The movers were, uh, ‘early?’ and emptied our apartment of our belongings in just over an hour. Including our bed. There followed two great exchanges.

01. Rufus: “Hey, that a pizza place round the corner?”
Me: (Tired) “Yep.”
Rufus: “Think it’ll be open at 11:30pm?”
Me: “If it’s not there are 2 other pizza places in walking distance.”
Rufus: “3 pizza joints in walking distance? Why you guys leaving this place!?”


02. Riley (a slightly shorter, fatter and nicer version of Rufus): “Hey, you know any Wal-Marts around here were we can park the truck and spend the night?”
L: “No.” (but if you could have just seen my wife’s face.)

And that was how L and I spent the last night of our Chicago days laying on the floor of the best apartment in the best neighborhood we have ever known. It was also part one of L and Doug’s Excellent (cross-country) Adventure. Tune in next time for Part 2: L and Doug’s Bogus Journey (where one of us played chess vs Death(!!!) or maybe just ate a maple donut. I guess you’ll just have to wait and see.)


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