The BIG Adjustment
-Wednesday June 14, 2023 (Travel Day)
Logistically speaking, it took a lot of coordination to ensure a smooth transition from west coast to east coast life. While “Billie Jean” was stored at the new property during our escrow period, Jeff and I spent a month in Illinois to spend time with family. Subsequently, I flew back to Oregon for a week’s visit with my mom, sister and brother-in-law while Jeff flew back to California to coordinate things with the moving company and the long haul of getting our stuff from California to Virginia (July 13th post). At the tail end of all that, I flew back to Illinois to pick up Sadie and the truck while Jeff had already begun the long 10-hour days of driving in the tiny, cramped quarters of our Mazda Miata. I’m sure that car was happy to be driven again after being in storage for 3 years! Jeff did manage to stop in Utah for an overnight stay with our good friends Katie and Wayne whom we met on our July 4th weekend in Chicken, Alaska (2022). Jeff and I would eventually unite in Illinois just in time to celebrate Father’s Day with Hannah and Devin and the grandkids.
Gluttons for punishment, we hit the road the very next day, Jeff in the Mazda, me in the truck for another 10-hour day of driving to finally arrive at the property, though our arrival didn’t quite go to plan. Originally our goal was to get to the house before dark. Instead we arrived at 12:30 a.m., carefully dodging wildlife (there are so many deer in this part of Virginia), and in the rain no less. It’s always a bit strange when you enter a new home for the first time, especially in the dark. Everything feels, sounds and looks so different. I guess the only way for me to describe this emotion was that a huge surge of fear came over me, being way out of my comfort zone. It all hit at once. Being far away from the west coast life that we came to know and love all these years, and owning a property such as this one just sort of freaked me out. At least for this night, we could shut the door and take refuge in what was familiar…….the trailer.
I guess the clouds decided to hold the rain, as we didn’t have the weather we were expecting on our first full day at the house. After a good hard sleep and the comfort of daylight, the footsteps that I took last night into our new, unfamiliar space had now turned into a dance, thank God!
Even if it didn’t completely feel like home, I was overcome with enthusiasm in getting our new abode homey!
Then, a buzzkill……..nothing a new homeowner ever wants to encounter…….no running water. Hoping this wasn’t a sign of more things to come, we immediately called Janie (the listing agent). She said the last time she was at the house, the water was working fine. Our guess was that she was running off of a small amount of water that was still in the pipes. The water pump under the house was definitely not working. This was an issue during inspection, but it had been replaced by the sellers. So we called the crew that had replaced it a month prior and without delay, returned immediately to make things right. Within minutes, they discovered it was a faulty pump and replaced it at no cost to us; super, nice fellas (father/son) who’ve been in the biz for 30+ years. Nice they got us back in business so quickly.
Having the trailer and all of its contents really made for a smooth transition into our new home, especially with the fact our stuff from California was still not set to arrive for at least another week. But what we did need was a resupply of food. Knowing our quaint mom/pop grocery store wasn’t going to cut this shopping trip, we headed about 10 minutes southwest in our quest to stock our pantry/fridge. It’s not the Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods I was spoiled by in California, but it did the job. Even picking up our held mail at our small-town post office gave us some connection to our new hometown. It’s the little things.