Tuesday, August 7, 2007

My Life in Boxes

From age 18 to 32, I moved, on average, once every fourteen months. I don't like moving, but there is one advantage that I hadn't considered until now: fourteen months doesn't give you much time to accumulate a lot of junk between annual moving-related purges.

Now, however, I'm facing a partial move after having lived in my current apartment for a record-setting four years. And let me tell you, you never know how much crap you have until you try to put it all into boxes and move it halfway across the country.

I am fortunate, in that I'm subletting the place for the year, and the incoming faculty member who is taking it is taking it with all the furniture, kitchen stuff, and assorted things like potato peelers and toilet brushes that you need in a new place. I am renting furniture for the year, so my move consists mainly of clothes, books, and files. Yet these items seem to multiply and increase in size (and weight!) as soon as I remove them from the shelves, closets, and cabinets that are their natural habitat. I've moved tons of books up to my office, taken bags of clothing to the Goodwill, and still the stuff just keeps on coming.

And, a year from now, I get to do it all again...

But, I'm not complaining too much, as this is all in service of a year to devote to writing, writing, writing. It's worth a few boxes, I think,


Belle said...

A familar topic for me. I spent 20+ years moving about every 8 months. Whole years went by without unpacking some boxes. When I got here, bought a house... I celebrated by throwing away all the boxes I'd collected and filled for so many years. Four years later, I moved again. Twice in 4 weeks; boy, did I need boxes. Again.

So as you begin the new adventure, be nice to yourself. You'll have enough stress elsewhere.

Matthew Gabriele said...

Best of luck with the move and (belated) kudos on finishing your article, from a fellow medievalist.

Dance said...

Ditto. In every sense, except for the part where I've already done a lot of the moving work. I'm trying to be minimalist for the year--taking very few clothes, little kitchen stuff, minimal files, no books (the place has a library). And yeah, despite the hassle--oh, looking forward to that year!

hilary said...

A wonderful feeling to purge, don't you think? Especially when you're not used to accumulation, I would imagine.
Good luck with the move! Talk to you soon, and thanks for the mail! I look forward, especially, to the footnotes.

Notorious Ph.D. said...

Thanks for the encouraging words, all!

@Hil: I will probably forgive you if you skip the footnotes. Or even the article. I promise not to quiz you.

@Dance: Luckily, I don't have to move furniture or kitchen stuff. I have two (small) boxes of books, and two of files. Three (so far) of winter clothes. Two suitcases. Where are you headed off to?