Monday, April 25, 2011

The End is Nigh!

Whew, finally...  I think I have just one more load of moving and I'm done.

I picked what was probably the most disorganized and inefficient way of moving from one apartment to another.  I schlepped a backpack and a tote bag of stuff on the subway, over and over and over...  A few times I left the tote bag and carried a box or a suitcase, when those had to be moved, but otherwise, nearly everything came in those two bags...

I knew at the start that I wasn't going to be organized enough to actually pack and have everything ready to be moved in one shot, or even a couple, despite a friend offering to drive down to New York City and help me (it wouldn't be fair to her to drive down and me not have anything ready...)

So, when I got the keys to the new apartment I started with what items I would need to spend a first night in the new apartment.  The next day I prioritized based on what I would need to spend a first work night in the apartment and get to work in the morning.  Then I had a surprise and had to change some priorities because the new apartment had no hot water at the time...

All subsequent weekends this month I've simply taken the subway back and forth between the two apartments.  Carrying the empty backpack and tote bag one way, full the other...  Fortunately both apartments are pretty close to stations on the R line.

The hardest part of each trip is getting out with full bags at the 9th Street station in Park Slope.  I have to walk up the stairs, then it's uphill for an avenue block, when I'm already winded...

Today I hired some movers to help with the furniture, the dining table, four chairs and bookcase, which were too much for me to haul on my own.  I suppose I could've taken the chairs and bookcase, one-by-one on the subway, but I decided not to.

Late in the morning I looked up movers on Craigslist to see what options there were.  I found one that had a reputable looking website where they also listed prices, so I called them.  It was $75 an hour for two guys with a van, which seemed reasonable.  That was the cheapest option listed that included transportation, others involved labor but no transportation, which was exactly the problem I have doing it myself...

I called them and the guy said to email him all the details and he'd call me back.  So, I did that, emailed the two addresses, the quantity of stuff to be moved, and that I'd like to get a ride with the movers.  A few minutes later he called and said they'd be there at the old apartment at 2:30pm and I confirmed the price with him.

Then I headed to the old apartment.  There's not so much left to pack at this point, but still garbage to throw out.  I didn't realize how many plastic bags I've accumulated in just six months.  Lots and lots!  I brought a pocket knife with me so I could cut the tape on various shipping boxes that were lying around so I could flatten those out.

I also left my Visa card and most of my cash in the new apartment, since I expected to get a ride with some strangers and didn't want to risk them stealing too much if it turned out to be a scam to get me alone and rob me.  Craigslist has a bad reputation for crooks using it to set up meetings with people who'll have cash, though I think that applies more to people offering stuff for sale for nontrivial amounts to get prospective buyers to meet them, carrying cash (e.g. I could use it to advertise a $1,000 computer and expect a prospective buyer to meet me somewhere with $1,000 cash, so I could then beat them up and steal the money) than it applies to services (one recommendation I read is if you want to buy something via Craigslist, arrange to meet the seller at a police station, if they're legitimate they won't have a problem with that...)

Around 2:10pm they called and said they'd be there at 2:30pm.  I continued doing my stuff and around 2:30pm I was taking a load of trash out when I saw a black, windowless van pull up and stop in front of the apartment.  A couple of minutes later they called and I asked if that was them in the black van and they confirmed, then one of them got out and introduced himself as Danny, and said the other was Tyrone.

Tyrone stayed with the van while I went up with Danny and we moved the chairs and bookcase down to the van.  Then I stayed with the van while they went up and got the table, the largest, heaviest item.

Once loaded in the van Danny sat in the back on the floor while Tyrone got in the driver's seat and I sat in the passenger seat.  Tyrone set the GPS thing to give directions, which gave weird ones that would work, but involved quite a few extra turns, so he just followed mine.

In front of the new apartment I put down the door stops so we could load all the stuff into the lobby, then Tyrone stayed with the van while me and Danny got things in the elevator and up into my apartment.  I didn't really want just the two of them in my apartment without me, so that's why I did half the work...

Once finished I paid Tyrone $75 since it took almost an hour from when they arrived till we finished.

I made another trip down to the old apartment and filled the bags, then realized, that there's not two bags worth of stuff left!  Whoo hooo!

But I'll use both, anyway, I think I'll haul the robot down tomorrow and let it run wild a bit.  It should like the wide open, empty apartment.

So, after I do the last load, I'll write a letter to my former landlords, stick the keys in an envelope and slip it under their door.


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