I intended to write this post last week as a Baran Current Events crash course, but for some reason, I just wasn’t feeling it. I’m still not feeling it, actually, but it needs to be done, so here it is. Only now it’s a Baran Recent Events crash course, because all this happened 1-2 weeks ago. ‘All this’ meaning all the craziness I’ve endured.
Basically, we moved.
If you know us, that’s all the clarification you need. If you don’t know us… Let me explain.
A month before we had to move, we all came down with the flu.
For two weeks.
If you’re part of that strange 0.2% of population who knows math, you’ll know what a month minus two weeks equals. I, on the other hand, had to use a calculator. But I think we got the same results: It equals two weeks.
Only two weeks to pack up an entire house.
I see that judgemental look in your eyes. “It takes you two weeks to pack up a house? I could pack up in one week!”
Yes dear, but you’ve never seen our house. I’m not saying any of us are pack rats, though if you want to read it into this statement, that’s fine by me. But we have a home business; we sell books online and at consignment sales. Which means we have a miniature book store in our basement. And in our garage. And in our two storage units. And in our living room.
I think you get the picture.
This leads to the next problem: One of our most productive book sales happened to take place directly in those two weeks that were supposed to be spent moving. So not only were we packing, hauling, groaning, and dying of influenza, we were also listing, sorting, tagging, wiping, and arranging in alphabetical order. Because my dear Mop, bless her heart, was NOT content to just let it go (please do not burst into song), and couldn’t bear to send them off not in peak condition. She can be a bit of a perfectionist at times.
Then finally, early one morning, dad got up, loaded our van with all the saleable books, and set off on the hour long drive to the sale.
That was when the van decided to break down.
But did we send it to a mechanic? Of course not. What do mechanics know, anyway? After all, dad is the one who fixes things with duck tape and zip ties. The man’s a genius. So he fixed the van , and for the moment, besides the fact that we had literally nothing packed, things were good. We had rented a storage unit to keep stuff and books in while our house was in upheaval, and Dad would make daily trips to and from, hauling things around.
That was when the van decided to break down AGAIN.
He took it to a mechanic that time.
Then Joseph just had to be ornery. What do you know but he went and turned eighteen on us, right in the middle of everything. We had two choices: Pretend we didn’t notice so we could keep working our tails off, or waste precious time by taking him out to eat or something. Either way, we lost.
And please disregard the fact that I just said ‘Joseph turned eighteen’ and ‘waste precious time’ in the same sentence. All in love, dear, all in love. We did get a nice cake out of it though. His co-workers had the nerve to throw him a party at work while we were doing nothing for him, and his boss’s wife made this gloriously chocolatey chocolate cake that he got to take home. We lived off of that thing for three days. Despite the fact that it wasn’t meant for us.
Then one day, when we woke up for another day of business, to find the clouds pouring rain. This in itself is not a bad thing. The fact that our van’s windshield wipers decided to break was.
Oh, and remember that storage unit we were keeping our books in? Well, it had water running down the wall. Inside. Helpful Hint of the day: Books and water do not go together.
And where was I during all of this? Off in my little workshop, industriously toiling away while the rest of my family broke things.
Okay fine, I was standing on the sidelines and making snide remarks about the entire process. But I digress. Anyway, Anna came rushing up to me at one point, shoving her camera in my face and telling me that I needed to take pictures of her holding boxes at the top of the attic steps. Why she would want those kind of pictures, I’ll never know, but that is just Anna.
Oh, look at that. She’s pretending to fall down the stairs.
Still pretending to fall down the stairs.
In fact, Anna is so good at pretending to fall down stairs that you can hardly tell when she’s not pretending.
Anna is epic.
Then she decided to drop the box for real. With a great crashing and breaking of glass, it tumbled down the stairs and bonked me in the head. “Man down,” I croaked from the abyss of concussion, then realized three things:
Oh look, the box that fell all the way down the stairs is my box.
It says fragile.
And I spelled fragile very wrong.
Then finally, the day came: The day we were going to move. As the moment drew near to leave, my cat mysteriously disappeared.
I finally found the poor thing cowering behind the washing machine. Apparently, she likes moving as much as I do. But after an intense session of coaxing and she still wouldn’t come out, I realized that I needed to implement more extreme measures. So I called on my sister.
“Look,” I said, “I’ll stand here, and you climb on top of the washing machine. Flush her out with this broom handle, and I’ll grab her.” I handed Anna a broom.
That probably wasn’t the wisest idea.
You see, Anna is a highly excitable individual. And for some reason, she gets extraordinarily hyper when either of our two cats are suffering. Don’t ask me why, but there it is; cat-fear makes Anna happy. She’s also very good at falling down stairs. So giving Anna a broom while she’s in a tiny laundry room with a miserable cat is bound to bring about the end times.
My cat thought so too. Thank you, Jane, for rushing out from behind the washing machine before we had to witness Anna’s stellar broom-flushing skills.
Then, at long last, we left. Two years in that house, and I’d never see it again. I’d never go to bed at night, gazing at the glow-in-the-dark stars on Anna and my bedroom ceiling, pretending I saw Narnian constellations in them. I’d never go to my quiet corner in the storage room, away from anyone who might witness the spectacle, to cry when life got too hard to handle. I’d never walk through that bright red front door again. As our car rolled down the driveway, I began to feel a strange sensation in the pit of my stomach; I felt—almost sad.
Nope, false alarm. I was hungry.
The thing is, while the other houses I’ve lived in at one time or another (seven, to be precise) had sentimental value attached, this house had something more: It had depth. This was the house I went from being a clueless kid to a young lady in (please don’t laugh, my family). This was the house were I first felt grief. This was the house that dreams were crushed and created in.
It was there that I curled up on the floor of the storage room one day, pencil and notebook in hand, and started scrawling down the words of my first book.
I’ll always be grateful to that house. But I’m also glad to be moving on. So far, the life of a Baran has been anything but boring, and I have an instinct that our adventures are not about to end anytime soon.
The instincts of an INTJ should never be ignored.
And wish Joseph a happy birthday for me.
P.S Oh, and apparently, this is my 10th post. So… *showers glitter around the room* Woo-hoo for that one.