Citizen of Industry

little giant 1219

Following a day of sloth that really wasn’t as slothful as intended, I woke up yesterday in a manic fit, composed a list for myself, and immediately set about tending to it. No time for blogging; no time for naps; no time to pause and read anything. Yesterday it was all about doing. And even with intentions followed by action, my list is only half complete.

Clearly there are more things to do than time to do them, but I doubt everything’s as urgent as I’m making it out to be. For some reason I feel compulsively driven to get Lynn and I out of our 12 x 20 rental storage shed, even though we really haven’t found a shed to downsize to.

We purchased a shed — maybe I mentioned that once, in passing — that was less than half the size we originally set out to buy (but a fraction of the cost, at least until we moved it), but the smaller size seems workable, because almost everything in the rental storage place is marked “maybe” or “go away.”

In my mental world, we were going to move in June, everything would instantly unpack, Mary Poppins style, the “maybe” boxes would have been sorted and we would have had a garage sale in August right there in the rental unit. But my mental faculties were sadly deficient in this area.

First, we didn’t even move until mid-August, and then it turns out Mary Poppins didn’t come to help us unpack, and that is a process that is going to unwind for many more months. Years, perhaps. I had Sharon Schlegel tell me she has unpacked boxes in her basement from when she moved 50 years ago.

But we could, at this point, downsize our rental shed, even though Lynn is loath to move everything in it to a new shed. If we switched to the facility that is even closer to us, we could get a 10 x 10 unit for about half the price we’re paying now. Except that the facility apparently doesn’t have an available 10 x 10 for rent. One hundred storage spaces (or so it seems), and all but perhaps two of the smallest units are occupied. If I had been thinking, when Lynn checked, two 5 x 5 spaces appear to cost less than one 10 x 10, so maybe we should just rent two. Although it seems silly to rent 25 square feet of storage space.

So yesterday in a move I’m sure my co-workers will love, I loaded my truck up, twice, from our rental and carted the boxes to a newly-freed-up corner of our back room at work. In theory, from the same mind that was sure we would be unpacked and hosting an open house within two months, I can go through these “maybe” boxes (most of them seem to be books) in warmth and comfort.

But there are still many (many) boxes in the rental unit. I could have moved more, but boxes of books are heavy; it was alternately snowing and blowing; and my list was long.

My snow shoveling chores are less at this house than they were at the old house, but I still went out to clear the deck and noticed that I had placed rocks incorrectly at a major drip point off the roof, and we are hydrologically tunneling to China. I got more rocks in an attempt to halt the excavation and moved our grill to a less windswept part of the deck.

I folded clothes. I unpacked our new folding table. (That’s as in a table that folds in half, although I did use it to fold clothes, because my folding counter in the laundry room has been temporarily pressed into service as a staging space for the annual Pat’s festive holiday party. Don’t feel bad if you’re not invited — it’s for employees).

Then, because we hadn’t spent enough money at Ace hardware the day before, Lynn and I went shopping and melted the credit card, mostly on:

Our new Little Giant ladder!

It turns out, you don’t have to shop on-line to buy 24 ladders in one. You can go right to your local hardware store, where it not only is on sale, but comes with a free work platform. And it comes with long-time Ace clerk Bob, who will tell you he’s had one for years and that, yes, it’s heavy, but it’s a very versatile, good ladder. Of course, Bob sounds like more of a handyman than me (or Lynn), but I’ve already come up with our first use for it: I can plug our new outside holiday light purchases into the outlet our electrician installed in our eave for just that purpose.

This is the first ladder I’ve bought that comes with an instruction manual, and by the time I unpacked the ladder (the plastic around it said multiple times, “Remove at Store,” but the cashier said we could keep it), I was too tired to read much. I was also too tired to take our new color wash lights outside and set them up, even though I managed to put them together and only dropped one tiny screw (found by Lynn).

Before Ace we went to Tractor Supply, where we didn’t buy anything but discovered that after years of threatening, my old boss did not go back to his seasonal job at the airport and is now putting in hours at Tractor Supply instead. And he’s doing woodworking on the side, which may be a handy factoid to keep in mind.

We also went to the dedication of the newest Habitat for Humanity house, which is about three weeks away from completion but going to be a lovely little straw bale home for a young couple. The Habitat newsletter mentioned that these motivated folks have put in double the number of sweat-equity hours required of them. They must have more energy than some of us.

On our way home to unpack boxes and ladders and assemble Christmas lights, we stopped at the health food store, where for the first time in a month I was able to buy milk. Some major electrical component blew out along the entire strip mall a month ago, causing Terry to lose all her freezers and refrigeration. Restoring power took a full two weeks, and then she missed a delivery, so I’ve been surviving on grocery-store milk for a month.

Even though it was on my list for yesterday, I did not get an outdoor bench covered (I couldn’t find the tarp I’m sure we have, so we bought a new one at Ace). I did not get my tools sorted and put into the box I bought two months ago. We did not sign up for GCEA rebates, which the clock is running out on; curtains did not get put up in the guest room (although it now looks quite festive with Christmas lights); household bills did not get paid; and our wills are still not updated.

But there’s always today, right? Unless all this industry is superseded by a nap. It could happen.

One thought on “Citizen of Industry

  1. Not to put a damper on your new ladder, but hadn’t you uncovered a couple of them during the move? Oh wait, maybe that was electric drills. No matter, all your activities were very impressive, seriously & now a nap is in order. Please send Mary Poppins my way if she ever shows up.


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