I have been busy with moving lately. When I say that I have been busy, I don't mean the actual physical act of lifting and carrying part so much as the worrying about getting everything done and struggling against oppressive heat to pack a small box of twelve wine glasses. Moving becomes a whole different gooey ball of wax when the thermometer starts hovering around 35°C in a cramped and dark apartment.

Luckily, the Fiery One and I are in possession of both our old and new apartments throughout this month, so it's okay that we are making such slow advances on the situation. The bulk of our moving so far has involved getting our books over to the new place so that we can see what it is we're actually dealing with in the old place. I'm not sure how many books we have, but I do know that we moved approximately fifteen to twenty boxes of them with the help of our friend, Deron.

Actually, Deron deserves his own paragraph here, because the man was fabulous at the moving thing, and we are truly grateful for his help. It's rare that we get to see Deron, and on one of the very few occasions that we did run into him, we mentioned our impending move, and he offered to help. I am used to friends looking shifty and scattering like so much chaff when they hear that you are moving, but Deron offered up not only his wiry frame but a huge vintage police station wagon as well. On top of that, while the Fiery One and I were each carrying in one box per trip, Deron was carrying two heavy boxes of books in at a time. When the last box was carried up to the new apartment, he asked about what we were going to be moving with the next load. The Fiery One and I had not even considered moving more than our boxes of books. The thing that really makes Deron the rockingest, though: he actually looked disappointed when he found out that we had just finished moving our first and only load that afternoon and that there would be no more. When Deron's moving boxes, he looks happy like those dogs who hang their heads out of car windows on the highway (not in the drool-and-floppy-jowls sense but in the honestly happy-and-enjoying-the-moment sense; he's not floppy or drooly in the least).

With the books mostly out of the way aside from a few lingering piles (those books, they malinger), we are left with everything else. The only things I like moving are books, because they are so easy to pack and unpack. Everything Else (kitchen gear, lamps, clunky furniture, etc.) is oddly shaped, often breakable, and usually awkward to carry up a winding flight of one hundred year old stairs such as the ones in our new building. My parents are coming down from Cosmopolis with their van and a trailer to help us move Everything Else at the beginning of next week, but the Fiery One and I have been trying to carry over at least one or two armloads every day after work. It's only a four-block trek, but in the ridiculous heat and humidity, I usually give up after one go.


Two days ago, I decided to wash down a set of metal storage shelves and carry them over to the new place. They're about six feet tall but fairly narrow and light, so although they were awkward to haul around, I thought it would feel good to move something substantial over. I changed out of my work clothes, threw on a pair of jeans and a tank top that I found on the floor, and started hauling. About one-third of the way there, I had to move over to let two men pass me on the sidewalk. They looked a little seedy. I hate passing judgement on people I don't know (at least when I realize I'm doing it), but they were dressed like 1983 with the sleeves ripped off their t-shirts and a few days' growth of facial hair to round out their mullets. I stepped aside more to avoid them than to be nice, in all honesty. I had myself pushed back into a hedge, and so when they paused, looked down while smiling ever-so-slightly, and excused themselves, I thought they were being surprisingly gentlemanly.

I finished my trip and dropped off the shelving. On the way back, just as I was passing the part of the hedge I had recently been in, something bright caught my eye on the sidewalk. It was a smallish pile of violet cloth with tiny pink and white flowers on it, and it looked terribly familiar. It was then that I knew exactly why those seedy men had been looking almost bashful earlier. Just as we were about to pass each other, just as I was pushing myself into the hedge, THIS PAIR OF MY PURPLE UNDERWEAR FELL OUT OF MY PANTLEG. They weren't being extra gentlemanly. They were trying to hide their laughter.

Being the strong and unashamed woman that I sometimes am, I bent down, picked up my underwear, and shoved them in my back pocket. It was only after I arrived back at the old apartment that I realized the crotch was hanging out of the top of my pocket during the whole last two blocks home.

I do so love the sock monkeys. This is a site after my own heart.

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

"Moving Forward" by Rainer Maria Rilke