Wednesday, June 3, 2015

A Month of Moving, pt 1: Pulling up Roots

Honestly, I should have started this post a few days ago, when my Month of Moving really started.  Here's the deal: I leave for Blargistan at the end of June and will be there through the beginning of August. I leave for FPU somewhere in mid-August. It seemed beyond silly to pay six weeks' rent (not cheap, even in Grit City Beach) for 10-days' residency.

The upshot of this is that I'm giving up my apartment at the end of the month, and will be living out of a suitcase and a PO Box for about seven weeks.

"How Exciting!" say my friends.

Well, yes. Sort of. But so are plane crashes.

If you knew me a little well, you'd know I am in many ways a homebody, even a little bit of a nester. I like "my space" -- everything just so. I have a particular table in every coffee shop that I like to sit in (and this includes the coffee shops in the foreign cities I pass through). I like to recognize and be recognized by people in my neighborhood.

But if you knew me very, very well, you'd know that I am, paradoxically, very uncomfortable with anchors. Anything that might inhibit my freedom to move more or less as I pleased would make me twitchy. Even though I don't often take advantage of that freedom, I just need to know it's there: that I could be halfway across the world in a matter of weeks or months at most. That I don't have to negotiate my choices.

In other words, the essential paradox is that I freak out at the threat of being anchored, but I get nervous if I'm completely unrooted. And now I'm going to spend almost two months without a fixed address, anywhere in the world.

This should be interesting.


Susan said...

Happy moving! It's hard, and it's particularly hard if you have to decide what goes in a storage unit for a year, what you take to Blargistan, and what goes to FPU (where you will need actual winter clothes.) The logistics of that would make me nuts.

My rule: there is always a shelf in the closet that you forgot about, with all the miscellaneous things you didn't know what to do with. And you will find it when you are doing your final clean.

Comradde Physiporffee said...

Let me know if you get in the mood for some picled egges at Phillippe!!

Notorious Ph.D. said...

Or, Comrade, if YOU get in the mood for scrubbing baseboards pre-moveout! EVERYBODY IS WELCOME TO MY MOVE-OUT CLEANING PARTY!!!

(Which, ironically, will take place on my birthday.)

Contingent Cassandra said...

I've got some of the same instincts: I very much appreciate having a home base, but I'm also reluctant to give up the option of pursuing other opportunities elsewhere (though I think I can live with slightly longer lead time -- maybe a year or two?). It's an odd combination, but maybe one that draws people to academia, with the promise it once offered of both stability/security and the possibility of change (or at least a periodic substantial change of scene)?

Anyway, I hope the packing/moving/logistics go well. This is definitely the sort of endeavor that I, at least, find requires more energy (mental as well as physical) than I'd like.

Historiann said...

Hey--congrats on your promotion! (I'm catching up after my recent spate of guests and travels slowly.)

My bet is that living out of suitcases & in a temporary apartment will either reinforce your rolling stone ways, or it will counteract them dramatically & you'll be determined to buy a house in 2016.

Just predictin'.

Belle said...

You're giving up your apartment? Wow! Big decision. I'm just two weeks from moving into Paradise North, and have done it enough that I'm all excited and anxious (in the good way) - but how long have you been in that place??j

I'm picturing you as a medieval bard, with your home in your suitcase/backpack. Good luck and have a wonderful time!!

Notorious Ph.D. said...

Hi all! Belle, I have to give up my apartment. My gig at FPU is a year long, and I can't pay rent on an empty place for a year (I'm not allowed to sublet). The upside is that, with 7 rootless weeks in the middle, I manage to save almost two months' rent.

H'ann, that two months' rent is going straight to the house fund. But prices are climbing again, so I may have to rent my way through another bubble.