May 30, 2007

Major "Organized" Chaos

Today started with rain, of all days! Hasn't rained for two weeks but now that it is time to unload the furniture, the skies open up. Why not? Slowly drove my way to Ripley. Going up the highway, I noticed that road crews were methodically picking up trash along the median and shoulders, even though it is raining. No wonder it so clean. I'm impressed--metro Washington should take note. Lord knows DC needs to do something, especially around the underpasses. I later learn they are inmates. Good way to make use of their time and the taxpayer's money.

The plumber was tackling the outside fixture; the long-distance driver was waiting. He was determined to block my neighbor's driveway. I haven't even met her yet and you want to block her driveway? He went to get her approval. I went to let in the plumber.

Water, at last! Cool, clear, water. Do you remember that song? Need new faucets but I've got a working toilet! Visits to the house have been very hard on the kidneys. I am forever in Mr. Hodge's debt--literally and figuratively. He's a little man, late 60s, who is a blur of activity. White hair, easy smile. Walks fast. One toilet down, another to go. I spoke of divine intervention with regard to two toilets arriving in my delivery from Home Depot and that says it all. The toilet has "blown up," as Mr. Hodge puts it. But don't rejoice too soon, missy. The fluid master in the new toilet doesn't work. Has to be returned. toilet works and I have access to water! Rejoice.

The rain has stopped and while overcast, the weather is cool. A far cry from the 92 degrees of yesterday. Where is the moving crew the driver has hired from nearby Dyersburg? They were scheduled to arrive by 10 a.m. It is 10:45 before they arrive. Two Black males and a wiry, white female, who could not have weighed 98 lbs. soaking wet. What is she going to do? Supervise? Work, is what she did and better than one of the males. Folks, let me tell you, some of those boxes were H-E-A-V-Y. You know I love books. Although I tried to put them in smaller boxes, there were a lot of them. She hefted boxes from the truck and put them aside for the males to load and unload. She manhandled the fully-loaded dolly. A word of advice to anyone who might even think of trying her: Don't.

Very obvious that they were a temporary crew. I went to the car to retrieve something and saw one of my tables on the patio. I guess they thought it was lawn furniture. The fact that it had brass legs must have thrown them. Although I was on the front directing which rooms received a piece of furniture, that item had slipped past me. Going inside, I found that the spacious rooms were quickly filling up. Things were being put in haphazardly. No stacking or organization. Just get it in and go for the next piece. No checking boxes to see whether it carried a tag for a specific room. So, what was the purpose of buying tags from U-Haul? Oh. No. Time to swing into the supervisor mode. Now, I'm stacking boxes and making room. There is still plenty on the truck. Plus, I have more items scheduled to arrive and there must be room.

Arriving amidst this hustle and bustle are representatives from another roofing company to look at and walk the roof, a return visit from Home Depot to have their person walk the roof, the handyman, and the termite company to do their annual treatment. Help me!!! Home Depot's rep was a little put out. Sorry, didn't you expect other bids? Oh, and the plumber is still at work.

The handyman took a seat to watch and catalog what I had. Stayed the entire time, yes, he did. I'd forgotten we were going to get materials for the kitchen counter. Figured he'd come back. Not. Plumber finishes and announces he'll be back on Friday. First roofing company finishes and announces they'll get back to me with an estimate. Home Depot is still waiting for his partner. Turns out he was stuck in traffic and wouldn't make it. Scheduled for Thursday a.m. He stuck around for a while and watched too. Yep, fellows, more boxes than furniture and the furniture for the most part is wrapped. Termite man announces that he is finished and the contract has been terminated. I'll have to get one in my name. At least that expense won't be until next year.

Truck is almost empty. The crew is fagged--at least one member is. So am I. The handyman is enjoying it. He's also assessing what odd jobs he can pick up. The crew turns it on; they've been hired for a specific time frame. Counting down to the finish. Bed set up, chair reassembled, time to go! Amos, the long-distance driver, is an Israeli, and has another load on the truck to be delivered to Denver, CO. He hopes to make Kansas City by nightfall. Don't know whether he meant Missouri, which I'm told is near, or Kansas. I keep forgetting that the Mississippi River is within miles of Ripley. My exploration of my new home has been limited to the interstate; I haven't been to that end yet. And from the looks of things, won't be exploring for some time.

Paperwork completed, Amos pulls away. He and the handyman have discussed various routes, cities with the best bypasses, yada yada. Good thing I paid by weight and not time. Off we go, the handyman and I, to a local hardware store to get the materials we need for the counter top. I'm almost pleading that he start this project tomorrow. I still have to get back to Cordova and finish clearing out the apartment. Not to mention clean it for the next occupant. Put everything in the house and lock up. Back to the interstate. Traveling this 120 miles daily is getting old. Abby stays thirsty and at $3.10 a gallon, I'm happy that this part of my journey to the Mid- South is almost over.

Make the apartment. Totally beat. The intent is to catch a nap, do what needs to be done, and head back to Ripley. A physical presence will deter anyone interested in supplementing their income. Nap turned into a deep sleep. It is 10:30 p.m. when I awake. No trip to Ripley tonight. Can only pray that no one will be inclined to help themselves to anything left outside. Just as well, though. I have to hit the bank and Home Depot in the morning. To do that would require another trip in from Ripley. More gas. I spend the time gathering belongings for tomorrow's departure.

Take a rest, friends. I'm off the air until the cable company arrives. Which means I can devote that time to cleaning. Unpacking is not possible until things get cleaned. Hard days ahead. Even my mind is becoming fatigued at the thought. Take care and be blessed.

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