Thursday, September 04, 2003

I have moved. Or perhaps, better to say, I have experienced a most horrible chain of events in one single day that resulted in all my stuff being displaced from one location to the next with a great deal of effort, sweat, tears, money, and time.

September 1st is officially the worst day to move, because everyone and their mothers are here or visiting for little baby's first day at college, googooley googooley goo, and also moving into or out of my old neighborhood.

With absolutely no choice, I had to move that day. Since I make money these days, I figured- hey, I'm going to hire movers. I'm not dealing with this shit. Also- last summer, I spent the better part of June and July moving people in and out of my apartment (high turnover at 1131) and felt that was enough moving for one lease year.

So, even though its Labor Day- and not only are all the kiddies back, and their parents, there are also labor day sales, shoppers, and tourists filling the city. I wake up at 7:30, drink some homemade ice coffee, eat the last bagel, and genuinely take a little time to enjoy the morning before getting down to business. Then, its pack up all the last things, clean all the last places, make sure the cat is securely in one room with the cat mover-box thing ready to go, and let the plan unfold

Here's the plan as it was supposed to occur:
1. The landlord's cleaners and painters come in the morning to clean and paint the apartment for the new tenants. Thus, I spent a considerable amount of time moving all furniture and boxes into the center of each room the night before, and continued to shift things around in the morning.

2. The moving company shows up somewhere between 11 to 12. This is the window I am given. They get all my stuff (including two beds, one couch, three stuffed chairs, a partridge in a pear tree, and more crap that I cannot possible move on my own.)

3. The new tenants also arrive around 11, see that my stuff is being moved, and politely give me the time I need to get out. I hand over the keys, wish them good luck with the mouse and the burgeoning ant problem, and call a friend to drive me, the cat, and my plants, to the new home.

Here is what happened:
By around 9:30, I realize that I'm tired and no cleaners are there. I throw a pillow down in the foyer, and take a little snooze- since it is the best place to hear someone knocking or the phone ringing.
By 10:30, I pray to God to do me this one single favor and bring the movers at 11. The cleaners and painters knock on the door and see that I am not moved out, and even though I say- please go ahead around my stuff, they decline. 10:45 I try to call the moving company just to check my status, and get a message asking me to please call back during normal business hours, they are not open, its freakin labor day.
11, no movers but Lo! not just one tenant and his mom, but all three, and assorted parents. Has the place been cleaned? Nope. Where are the cleaners? I dunno. When are you moving out? When my movers show up, within the hour, ok.

And I say to one gentleman- "if you want to get into that room [point at my shut door], please come get me because my cat is in there." I go to the living room to look out the window and see if my moving truck is there. I turn around and see that MY DOOR is open and the APARTMENT DOOR is open, and I know instinctively that downstairs, THE DOOR TO THE BUILDING IS PROPPED OPEN and yes, Virginia, the cat is gone.
I race to my room, confirm that the cat is gone, tell the bitches standing in there that I had asked them precisely not to do what they were doing and where the hell is my cat? One of assorted parents ho ho's and ha ha's, oh cats gone missing? Yup, yup, it'll turn up, probably scared.

You do not know, Mr Big Fat Asshole Standing in my Foyer, that my cat is nuts. My cat has emotional problems. My cat is not to be scared by strangers around OPEN DOORS LEADING OUT INTO THE STREET. Only REALLY BAD THINGS can come from that.

I grab the baggie of treats and begin to wander the apartment, shaking bag, making kissy noises, speaking in a high tone, calling and calling my cat. I wander around the new tenants as they REMAIN in my apartment, with me begging for my cat to show up. I decide to check the entire building, go up the stairs, go down, go out onto the street, go into other apartments, shaking my little bag, making meows and kissy noises and calling the cat. I come back to my apartment, where once again, the door is open, close it, and address the room at large NOT TO LEAVE THE DOOR OPEN UNTIL I FIND THE CAT THAT THEY LOST.

They decide to leave, after commenting that the place really needs to get cleaned and it smells like cat piss and they are calling the landlord. I don't give a shit. I am frantically making meows and kissies, trying to find the cat. I call my roomate, crying, begging her to come over and help deal with the horrible people who lost my cat while I look for her. She shows up, I am hysterically crying, making meows and kisses, shaking the bag, shaking the bag, wandering from room to room to room. I move all the furniture, hoping to scare her out. I pick up every box, look in every crevice, weeping and wailing, until finally, AN HOUR LATER, I end up flat on my bedroom floor, still crying, and happen to notice something I never knew- my dresser had a three to five inch space underneath it in the back. And there is my precious kitty. I cry even harder.

Finally, hysteria subsided, I realize its past twelve, I have no idea where the truck is, where the new tenants are, when either will show up, and the cleaning people decide to make a raid into the apartment to begin cleaning. With my roomates help, I decide to move all of my boxes and sundry items out to the street, leaving only the furniture for the movers to deal with. I carry a chair down the three flights, place it next to all my stuff, and wait. On the street. With all of my belongings. Until the movers show up.

They show up at 2:30. They are two of the smallest hispanic men I have ever seen. 10 to 15 minutes later, another truck pulls up, and four more of the smallest hispanic men in the world come out. One will stay to help, and the others will go on to my new roomates apartment to pick up their stuff and get it to the new home.

I frantically make calls, looking for someone, anyone to get me to my new home. The old roomie had already left with the cat and the left over groceries because of the terrible hour of lostness that had occured. Luck gets a friend over, and we hightail it to the new home, to get there before the movers do. I come to my new home to find that the old residents (3:30- 4 pm) have not moved out. In fact, they are working on hoisting their beds over the porch to the street below because the stairs are too narrow to navigate. I decide, enough is enough, and sit my ass on the first floor porch (I'm moving into the third floor) and just wait for someone somewhere to arrive.

Another hour, and the new roomates call wondering where the truck is. My truck pulls up. Where is the other truck? Oh, its there. No it isn't, they just called. Its not? No. Oh, those guys.
They begin to try and park the truck in the street. I do not have a parking permit, and I do not know that I was supposed to secure one.
Then they unload my stuff. Then the other truck pulls up and my new roomates show up and a relay line of teeny spanish men forms to unload both trucks, and then they cant get the couch up without putting a hole in the wall, which we say go ahead as long as the couch is ok, and then they cant get my box spring up at all and then they want the payment up front, which NO ONE EVER MENTIONED, and it has to be cash or cashier's check. Its Labor Day. The banks are closed, its 6 PM anyway, and I can only take out so much with my ATM card. Cash or cashiers check upfront.

The three of us throw the money together somehow, pay them, get them out, and finally.. home. Except for my box spring, for which I will later call my old roomate and her once-in-the-navy-Dad to help rig the ropes and tie the knots that will get it up to the third floor, over the porch railing.

I realize that I am going to need a massive amount of shelving since my new room is half the size of my old, and I had more than enough stuff then. I also realize that someone with terrible taste decided to paint my room a color which is basically "band aid", in the sense that band aid's are supposed to be "flesh tone" but that color doesn't exist in nature. I really hope their intentions were raw umber or even tan, but it still leaves me needing to paint the room before I can put up the shelving which will get rid of all the boxes and bags which are currently taking up most of the space in the room.

That was September 1st.