Holy shit it’s been a hot minute since I’ve posted anything. I didn’t realize just how long it had been; it feels like just a couple days ago I was in Colorado writing about what I would miss most as I ventured west.
PSA this post went waaaaaaay longer than I anticipated. Prepare yourself for a long ride.
Preparing to Head West
The night of my last post, I had a going-away gathering. I don’t know if I drank too many margaritas or if the salsa was just a bit off that night, but I woke up on Wednesday sick as all fuck and basically dying. I had meant to pack my car that day and be ready to leave town early on Thursday, but instead I spent all day in bed trying to keep liquids down and just overall lamenting my painful existence.
Around 4pm my body found some motivation and I started moving boxes up the stairs, toward the general direction of the car. I had about 45 minutes of daylight to get some things into the car, even.
Thursday morning arrived, and I was still feeling weak and sick; awful enough I almost put off my trip for another day. However I had already arranged to have my king-sized bed removed from my sister’s basement that morning, and I wasn’t about to spend all day and an evening on the floor. I managed to get the big stuff into the car, and with each item I added I was watching the suspension dip lower and lower. The rest of the process was messy, at best. I ended up not having enough space in my car, like, at all. I needed a whole separate trunk for what I left behind. I keep having dreams that I’m somehow back at my sister’s with a gloriously empty car and I get to take the rest of my shit. But no.
What’s fucked up about all this is that I didn’t want to leave anything behind, and my sister was less than cordial about the whole thing. I was desperately shoving what I had thought was a whittled-down collection of items from my almost-30 years in Colorado, and she was talking about the huge inconvenience I was leaving her with. There were three small boxes of kitchen supplies, a box of clothes, a vacuum, a rug doctor, and a large custom wall mirror, and my sister was acting like I set the basement on fire on my way out the door.
I love my sister, but she is not a clean person. I spent most of my time on the main level of the house parkouring from one area to the next: squeezing past laundry baskets to get to the mini fridge in the garage for a beer, leaping over horse-sized dogs to get to the kitchen to open said beer, navigating around the massive pile of empty Amazon boxes in the piano room to get back to the basement. I never once used the kitchen because there was never a clean surface and I didn’t want to spend half an hour cleaning in order to cook for myself. So when my sister was upset with my for leaving a consolidated pile of things in the basement, knowing that I was stressed as fuck about the whole moving situation and sick on top of it, I was more than a little peeved.
So I called on my trusty friend Jill, thinking perhaps she could help with this situation. Sure enough, that beautiful bitch was prepared to drive about five hours round-trip to retrieve my stuff. I was on the road by then, and asked her to coordinate with my sister for the pickup and whatnot. I thought to myself, Ok, I got the bed out of the basement which was the big thing sister was stressed about. I had to pay over $100 to do it, but it’s done. Jill is picking up the rest of my stuff and sister won’t have to deal with any of it. Alas, sister was still salty about it for whatever reason. We still haven’t spoken since I left my house key on the bar in the kitchen and drove away. She didn’t even send birthday wishes last week when I had my last birthday in my 20’s.
Sinon was a champion among pets. She was in her crate the whole drive, sharing the front seat with some final items I had shoved in a bag on my way out the door, sleeping. Day one was like a 10-hour mandatory nap, and she loved it. Day two she was a little more pissed at me for making her do this shit again, but still caused no problems.
The drive itself was more perilous than I would have preferred. My car was so full of shit, I was a travelling blind spot. My suspension was riding so low, each time I went over any kind of bump on the interstate my butthole would pucker as I checked the mirrors for sparks coming off the back end of my car. Every time I stopped for gas I found myself checking my back tires to make sure they weren’t actually making contact with the suspension or whatever and wearing down. Paranoia level was at maximum.
I drove for ten hours on Thursday. I hadn’t eaten since Tuesday night, when I had the salsa/margaritas which killed me. I was cruising on adrenaline, hopes, and dreams. I called J when I was preparing to stop for the night and had him find a hotel for me. Yo, Cedar City, UT is where the cheap hotels are. Not only was the room less than $40, the pet fee was only $10 with no deposit. Let me repeat that: $10 with NO DEPOSIT. Fuckin incredible. The only problem was I couldn’t park near my room because I had taken the last room and the place was packed. Remember how I said paranoia level was at maximum? I slept poorly that night, because I was convinced (fucking CONVINCED) that someone would break into my car and steal all my worldly possessions. I was getting up about once an hour and peering out from behind the curtains to check on my car in the lot across the lane. Is the Kitchenaid still in the back window? Yeah…we’re good. For now.
Little surprise: the morning revealed my car in perfect condition, still riding low as fuck in the lot across the lane. Only six more hours to drive that day before we were to reach our final destination.
I spent Thursday, March 8th chasing the sunset across the western United States (photos below, including all the dead bugs I picked up on my windshield along the way), and the next day trying to beat my boyfriend to our new apartment.
I’ve been in California for almost two weeks. We have no furniture yet, except a bookshelf in the living room and a cubby-compartment thing with the fabric bin inserts in the bedroom for a dresser. We’re using an unpacked storage tub as a dinner table. I play video games on the floor. Sinon is entranced and terrified of the second-story living environment I’ve exchanged for the basement life she’s known. But I’m so much happier here than I was at my best point living with sister.
I got a job yesterday, which settled my only anxiety about being here. I had a house in Colorado I sold several months ago. The money from that sale was supposed to be for this move, to keep me secure and comfortable until I found a job. It wasn’t a huge sum, but it would have been more than sufficient. Except…..I loaned about 25% of it to a dear friend so she could start a new life, and I spent probably 50% of it paying off debts. That felt good as fuck, but it probably could have waited a bit longer and I would have had less anxiety recently. I could have saved what remained, and I tried. But…
I fucked up a bit. I did shit like fly my mom and her boyfriend out for a (I think totally random) visit, initiated a battle of will with my future mother in-law during the holidays and spent way too much on a hotel to prove some point I had about doing what I want because I’m a fucking adult, and feeding myself. Remember I said I never used the kitchen at my sister’s house? Yeah I ate out like, most of the time. Or I didn’t eat. I ate better than usual for a while. I should have been more responsible with my money, but I wasn’t. Everything is fine, but I felt like I needed to admit I fucked up as part of the process of shedding this anxiety. I’ll be making more than I ever have, by a large margin, at this new job. That doesn’t mean much, because this is California and if they paid wages like Colorado we’d all be homeless wenches. But it means enough to make a difference in my life, and I’m excited to see what the near future holds.
Who knows, maybe I’ll get crazy and get a couch. Or a bed.