Never Trust a Woman With a Clipboard …

move quote
At last! A firm move date. I called a bunch of moving companies and found myself in a violent Linda Blair head spin as ballpark price quotes assaulted my brain. $4,000? I don’t think so. $3,000? To drive 20 boxes and six pieces of furniture 134 miles? You’re kidding, right? Finally found three $1200 quotes. Norma, eager to book the job, showed up with clipboard and promised a written quote via e-mail in an hour. $2,000? I don’t think so. Finally nailed a $1,300 price from Dibble the Irish mover and signed on the dotted line. God bless the Irish.

My Insomnia is in the Bag

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Tuna’s getting whacky as my move date nears: He’s become fixated on plastic bags. The bigger, the better. Little sandwich bags are okay. Gallon-size sacks are better. I’m sure he senses my tension and is just amusing himself, but when he got into bed with trash a bag last night and proceeded to paw-pound it nonstop at 2 a.m., enough was enough. I put it under my pillow. He started digging to China to find his treasure. By 4 a.m., I finally got up and trashed it. He sleuthed it out, of course, so I gave up and stayed up.

A Friend in Need …

dentist
Just about everyone with whom I’ve come into contact over the years has been privy to the wailing and teeth gnashing that accompanies my never-ending dental odyssey, so as an early “welcome to your new hometown” gesture, my friend Geni gifted me with a dentist. No joke. She called her guy, asked if he accepts new patients and verified his willingness to accept my favorite payment method, Care Credit. Now, that’s a friend. I still have no move date. No mover. No answer to the latest Chase dilemma. But I do have a dentist. Sounds about right at this point.

Just another Stay-at-home Chick

man with corn
My OKCupid account has suddenly exploded. One guy’s writing from Indianapolis. Another is in Maine. A third is Colorado bound. I’m attracting men on the move. Since I haven’t had a vacation in a decade, these dudes are providing vicarious thrills. A New York City museum review. Lobster at a little café on the Maine shore. Movies; carnivals; plans to take mules into the Grand Canyon, oh my! I’m starting to feel like a pioneer: The little lady left behind while she watches manly men charge into adventures. Or maybe I’m just envious. Or jealous. Yup. It’s the last two.

Why I’m Pursuing Zombies

Zombies
There’s nothing like routine when normalcy becomes nothing more than a faint memory. Of late, brokered client jobs include profiling the grandfather of zombie apocalypse films, researching common car accident injuries, advising players on 3-card poker strategies and dispensing “how to buy a motorbike” advice. Boredom is impossible when eclectic assignments come my way and while I’ll never make a fortune tackling these gigs, the challenge of knowing nothing about fly fishing one minute and then churning out 3,000 words on the topic 24 hours later is addicting. Besides, it provides some of the best free therapy on the planet.

The Antidote for Pity Parties

Combat mission
I was ankle deep in self-pity over various moving dilemmas when I checked out the Netflix documentary series “Inside Combat Rescue.” Six episodes cover front-line helicopter medics in Afghanistan. Talk about sobering and tension-filled. Watching these teams swoop in, pick up wounded—sometimes in active combat zones–and then transport them to NATO or Afghan hospitals while doing triage in mid-air proved a riveting experience. Viewers learn these guys’ personal stories, too. This series isn’t for the squeamish, but by the sixth episode, my moving-related angst vanished. I recommend it to anyone who starts taking themselves too seriously. Including me.

Tail of Two Kitties

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Tuna continues his usual mayhem as I clean closets, box stuff for donation and decide what’s important enough to schlep to my new digs, but when the realtor’s photographer arrived to shoot photos of rooms, Tuna raced to his hideout while Dreamsicle stalked the photographer by inserting himself into every shot. He became so impossible, I had to stop working and undertake repeated cat removals. While Tuna stayed put in his hideout, Dreamsicle made one final demand by posing at the front door. Once his official (tripod-assisted, I might add) portrait was taken, he strolled away. No dumb cat he.

The Mystery of the Disappearing Letters

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What does it say about my keystrokes that the letters M and N on my computer keyboard are disappearing? No other letters seem to be affected. I’d expect this kind of behavior from S, T and the vowels, but M and N? N is in particularly bad shape; I can barely make out the letter. Do I replace the keyboard and help clog a landfill? Re-letter the keys with white paint? No matter what I do, the board won’t look the same. Then again, maybe I can just count on my memory to make sure these two letters aren’t forgotten.

News I Could Use

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When the CNN news bulletin popped up, I hesitated before clicking on the link. Not another plane downed, I pleaded. No more statistics about mortar shells and dead bodies in the Holy Land, I added as the message materialized. Whew. Turns out the post offered sparse details about a young dude winning his third major golf tournament. I breathe deeply. Golf. Don’t know how to play it–don’t care to–but my pulse settled into a calm rhythm while reading news I really can’t use. I don’t recall when last a news bulletin this benign arrived by e-mail. That’s pathetic.

Setting my Place on Fire

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I recently met with a local ReMax realtor. Marguerite is a “multi-million dollar producer,” but she encourages me to keep my hopes in check. I love her combination of enthusiasm and grounding. I believe her when she says that it’s not impossible that cutting a short sale deal with Chase could make winners of us all. Of course, having one’s home on the market can be a pain in the butt—people underfoot with little notice, which means that for the rest of my days in this condo, I’ll be sleeping with my vacuum cleaner. One does what one must.