Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Changes . . .

Last week, I started to research movers, and got the shock of my life when I found out just how much they charge to move your possessions from Point A to Point B. I had been budgeting a quarter of what it looked like the real cost would be (I don't know where I had gotten that low-ball figure), and I was slammed with the reality of suddenly adding a huge chunk to my budget and needing to save a lot more money. I was, in a word, freaking. My hands were shaking, I was so upset. I kept working the numbers on my spreadsheet, trying to figure out what I could sacrifice, or reallocate, or find for cheaper, and for two horrible days I was staring down the prospect of having to let go of the dream of leaving Chicago, finally, and striking out on my own to try to live the life I wanted. It was a dreaful time, a lot of tearful phonecalls and a few sleepless nights. I nearly threw in the towel.

Then, I finally figured out what I needed to do to make everything work. It was late on Wednesday of last week, and I had struck on the right combination of factors that should make my move still possible. It would mean some significant changes to my plans, though:

-I will no longer be driving Serenity to California. I don't think she would make the drive, for one thing; she's 15 years old and has 128,000 miles on her, and she shudders until she breaks 30 mph. I'll have to ship her across the country in one of those big car-transport trailers, and with all the quotes I've gotten over the last week, I'm pretty confident I can do it for around $650. It saves the wear-and-tear of driving her all that way, and also saves the gas, food, and lodging I would have had to put out for the trip. A flight will be cheaper, and save some stress on the rabbits too (4 hours instead of 5 days). Having to have them in cargo is not ideal, but probably better than five days shuffled from motel to motel in all kinds of weather.

-I will pare down my belongings as much as possible, and ship all my books media mail. Going with movers who charge by weight, I'll eliminate the heaviest boxes from the equation (my books), and only move with what is absolutely required. Several bins of older fabric will be staying in Chicago for a little while, and I'm going to have a few big-ass garage sales come September.

-I have to let go of doing the Art Fair in September. I really, really wanted to do it, but it will mean more outlay of money with no assurance that I'll break even. Yes, there's the chance that I could break even and then some, but I can't count on that, and now is not the time to make that kind of gamble. It breaks my heart to make a choice like that, but there it is. My future is more important, and Seamstress will still have shows to do in LA.

-I have to save even more money every month than I had been previously, which means no extras, ever, for the next 6 months. No chai, no books, no going to the movies unless someone takes me as a treat. I had been making sacrifices before, but it's time to go into overdrive.

It's been very stressful these last few weeks, especially now that my responsibilities at my job have just increased and my daily to do list looks epic. Faire is getting closer and my weekends are disappearing, and that buzz of low-level panic is with me constantly now. Still, I have always believed that there is no problem I cannot solve if I just try hard enough, and this is no exception. It won't be easy, but I guess the old Dust-Bowl-Era saying is true: California or Bust!


Anonymous said...

Oh moving sticker shock, that'll do it. I remember looking into professional movers one time I moved and knew I was out of my league when they were offering me discounts on boxes and I was planning to track down free boxes.

Of course I wasn't moving as far as you are.

Do they weigh your car too and charge you accordingly? Or could you pack heavy things in it and have them go with the car without affecting the shipping price?

Ginger said...

They don't weigh the car, but I wouldn't want to pack anything valuable in it! It won't be insured for much, and I'd hate to find out that someone had broken into the car along the way.

scotia_sammyjo said...

Hi, I'm sure you considered this, but I recently moved using a company called SmartMove from Miami FL to Idaho. It was 1000's of dollars cheaper than moving with a moving truck and packers - it was 2900 for 2 of their moving vaults and I did manage to get almost everything from my house in... I only had to leave the barbeque... for an addition few hundred dollars you can have helpers that will help you load and unload the vaults.... Anyway, good luck...