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Monday, April 30, 2012

Storage Stories

Hey, it smells like books in here!
The picture shows the back of our UHaul as it appeared before we drove it away from Pennsylvania. Chock full of good stuff. We had left it at the self-storage facility for about a year and a half, which was a lot longer than we'd hoped for and certainly longer than I've been separated from my personal library and ancient furniture, ever. How strange do I feel now that it's all in the same place as me? Did the past 18 months really happen? All that psychological strain, did it amount to anything?

Before we left, my husband had time to mention the TV show Storage Wars to the manager as an element in his unique sense of humor. It wasn't so funny when it got real and the manager replied that they'd been lucky and hadn't had an auction there in three years. There but for the grace of God...

A year and half isn't so terribly long, I suppose. A coworker of mine says she once had stuff in storage for three years! I have to doubt that she cared for the items left behind as much as I have cared for mine. To anyone else, it might look like junk, but as I've said before, my stuff is imbued with the story of my life. It hasn't been a bad life by any stretch, but it is a life meant to go on short trips while maintaining a completely furnished home base. My husband and I now hope that we can stay put. The great wandering needs to come to an end.

While we were on the road, I was reminded that wandering is an important part of my family history. When we visited for the day, my grandmother talked about how she took her husband, kids, and just the clothes on their backs and headed from Oklahoma to California in the 1950's, selling off or abandoning what few other possessions they had. California was a truly fresh start.

Now that I have all this stuff, of course it occurs to me that if/when we move again, it could be time to make a radical fresh start like that. But then I remember how Grandma ended her tale. "That was really dumb," she said. They should have at least brought a chair to sit on at their destination. Thanks, Grandma!