jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
The weekend was alright-to-good. I'd moved my dentist appointment to Monday from the middle of next week, and that went fine except for some gumwork that I'll need to have done in a couple of weeks. Then come Tuesday night the stress stacked up again. Emily's successfully located a subleaser, at least for a couple of months: yay! I won't have to pay half the mortgage in addition to Vancouver rent, and I might even not be dipping into savings. At least for that couple of months.

Trouble was, the subleaser wanted in on 1 October, and I was scheduled to leave Thursday evening and not get back 'til next Sunday. The first. Panic ... did not exactly set in, though stress certainly did.

Over the course of Wednesday I:
  • Got a couple of friends to hang out with me Wednesday night and help finish packing, which otherwise would have been a) slow, b) frustrating, and c) generally sad-inducing.
  • Acquired a small storage unit on short notice.
  • Decided to just call in exhausted on Thursday due to not sleeping well (this is not a lie), and just go in for my early-morning meetings.
So that happened and the packing went fine, and the move itself went fine. I left the bookcases and coffee-table there for the subleaser's use; the bookcases might fit into the storage unit if necessary. I'd intended to find myself a new better bed and move the old one to the condo so the subleaser could use it but given my state the last week or so, finding a decent bed was Not Happening. I'll throw money at Emily to find a bed. And then I guess I'll have two low-end beds.

After all that I made it back to my basement apartment about an hour before I'd expected, with plenty of time to pack for ten days up north. Indeed, I managed to leave about an hour early to get to the airport, so I'd have plenty of time to grab a leisurely dinner before my flight.

Except that when I got to the airport I realised I'd forgotten my viola, which would make it difficult to a) practise and b) have a Skype lesson on Tuesday. So, half an hour transit back out to the apartment and half an hour back to the airport, and there went all the extra time I'd built in for dinner. I did manage to grab something to eat anyhow but it was a close thing.

I then discovered, once I got here, that I'd left my glasses at home as well. This is deeply frustrating, as it rather limits my late-evening options. It's also gonna make things interesting if my contacts self-destruct again.

(I briefly thought I had lost my Nexus card, but it turned up again. Still not sure what happened there. I'd blame my lack of glasses except that I generally find things by touch and not by sight, so.)

But the weekend was pretty good: reconnected with Erin, went out to a couple of events to start trying to make connections in the local kink community, generally got a little more sociable and a little less stuck in my own head.

And today's the equinox, so maybe the horrificness has just been the fault of summer and it'll start to settle out now. I can hope, anyway.
jazzfish: Pig from "Pearls Before Swine" standing next to a Ball O'Splendid Isolation (Ball O'Splendid Isolation)

Last week I went up north with Erin, and promptly fell into a depressive slump. Reasons/triggers include: being Not In My Space, and being aware that My Space didn't exist and hadn't for at least a month, or maybe years; being fairly well isolated physically from most other people; not having had a safe space to begin processing the breakup, without feeling like I needed to Hold Together for someone else; and needing to be halfway functional for some unpleasant stress that Erin was dealing with.

Also I tore another contact on Monday morning. This is becoming a problem. I don't know if it's the dryness up north, or the hard water getting into the contact case, or my bad habit of napping without taking them out, or just a bad batch. Whatever it is it needs to stop.

I didn't fully recognise the depressive episode until last Friday afternoon, when I realised that I'd been meaning to email some folks, or journal about what was going on, all week, and hadn't done that. And I had also only barely kept up with the work I was meant to be doing. That part shocked me into realising that there was something seriously wrong. Shades of the year before I got laid off. Which, I mean. One of my driving principles right now is "I do not ever want to go back to where I was in 2014."

Anyway, that got sorted, though it was more symptom-treating than disease-curing. And instead of going to a weekend-long music festival three hours away I spent the weekend sobbing at random intervals, because I was finally feeling my way through the breakup. That was ... I wouldn't call it good, but it's a good thing to have done. Everything hurts all the time, but a little less now.

Then I came back on Monday morning and moved into my new place.

The move went swimmingly and I continue to recommend Tranquility Movers for all your metro-Vancouver moving needs. I put the stupid Ikea bed's headboard back on the stupid Ikea bed by myself, with assistance from a multitool that I'd borrowed from Erin's storage locker the time I had to let the movers in to take a look at it and see how much stuff there was. (Putting together the stupid Ikea bed requires a Phillips screwdriver, a star-head screwdriver, and a flathead screwdriver.) I'd expected this to be much more of a production: the couple of times I've assisted Emily in rebuilding it, it's taken both of us and a lot of swearing. Yay?

I've put books (roughly 10% of the total library) and DVDs on shelves, and tonight James and Julianne are coming over for a bit to be sociable at me while I shelve the games, and then I can start scooting furniture again. The room is huge, something like 15'x15'. I've got a queen bed and four bookcases in there, and I could have my computer desk set up and it would still feel huge and emptyish. I may see about retrieving my Cargo furniture after all, it will certainly fit.

I don't think it's a long-term place. It's got a tiny galley kitchen with no dishwasher and less counter space than the tiny kitchen in the condo. This is unlikely to do well with two people who aren't both conscientious about doing their dishes immediately and putting them away as soon as they're dry. It's in a good location, but not ideal: far from James and Holly, and not real convenient to anyone else I know. And either I'll get over my living-with-someone-else weirdness, or it will prove too much and I'll spend most of the next several months hiding in my room.

But it's an excellent short-term place. And maybe it's good enough for the medium term, while we try to figure out what we're doing with the condo. And maybe, maybe, it will get me out to some other social-type things of the variety I'm looking for.

"Maybe" is at least better than staring into a blank unknowable wall, which is what the last month has felt like.
jazzfish: a black-haired man with a big sword. blood stains the snow behind (Eddard Stark)
Thirty boxes of games. I mean, technically twenty-seven, but three of those are overlong boxes, and there's some odds and ends that didn't make it into a box yet. Like Gram's Mahjongg set which doesn't easily fit into anything. Speaking of, I'd ought to take the go set as well.

Expect I could cull it down to two bookcases worth of games. Likely worth doing.

Plan is to take four bookcases with me; if two are games, that leaves two for books. Which means I need to figure out which books come with me and which get to live in boxes for the foreseeable.

The last of Martha Wells's Raksura books should be here on Wednesday, and I'll take that north with me for next week. Other than that, probably some comfort reading. The complete Mike Ford certainly, maybe Freedom & Necessity (s'what I read after Kelly dumped me), hell, maybe it's time to carry on with that full Dragaera reread I've been threatening for awhile. If I had early Misty Lackey books (specifically Arrows and Herald-Mage) I'd read those, they're the kind of displaced trauma I'm looking for. Maybe something by eBear. Etc.

Anyway, books are tomorrow's problem.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
Five things, etc.

I strongly suspect us writers will be moved out of our current office soon. I've gotten used to it, despite the temperature quirks. I like being away from open-plan hell, and the view of downtown and the mountains makes me happier than almost anything else about work. Oh well.

Since I've been living in apartments I've been using hand-me-down vacuum cleaners from my parents: first a big blue Electrolux canister, then when that died a brown Hoover pushvac. The Hoover was heavy, clunky, and way more vacuum than necessary, and I've been talking for years about getting a replacement. Haven't been able to justify the purchase based on the amount of vacuuming there is to do, though. That's reached its natural peak in the current place, which has no carpeting at all.

Finally, on advice from Erin, I got myself/the house a Dyson stick vac for Xmas. It is amazing. It's light, it's fast, it replaces sweeping, and it even works alright on the one rug we brought with us. I hesitate to say it's changed my life but it has certainly had a positive influence on the housekeeping and the amount of cat litter scattered around.

I get to see ... hm. "One-quarter of my favorite band, plus one." Girlyman used to be my favorite band, but they went their separate ways about four years ago. For Ty, 'separate ways' included putting out a solo album, then getting married and forming a duet with her wife, Mouths of Babes. And they're playing in the Seattle area in a few weeks, and I'll get to see them at least once. /Possibly/ twice, but probably not.

The apartment is gradually getting into some kind of usable shape. All the games and books, with the exception of the books in the Last Damn Box, are on shelves. Most of the shelves are where they're going to stay. The second bedroom is still a wreck, and there are about a dozen white boxes still hanging out in the main area. It's livable, though.

Me? I'm doing alright. I'm back to viola on a somewhat regular basis. Writing is less frequent but still regular, and I might finally have a draft of this story by the end of the month. It's incredibly useful to have things that I can point to and say "this is part of who I am," particularly right now while I'm contemplating several kinds of major life upheaval.

... to the extent that that last wants talking about at all, a public DW post is not the place.

Last fall, and the move, and xmas, were all both good and highly stressful. I survived them all and I'm better for it. I'm curious to see what spring will bring, and what I'll bring to it.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
Tonight I'm celebrating Solstice with Erin. I am historically not much for celebrations as such but this one feels important and significant.

Tomorrow I may or not have anything coherent to say for Sunreturn. Overall, though, I feel like things are moving forward, out of the aimless flailing of the last month or two and towards something at least temporarily stable. (Stability, like permanence, is an illusion of scale.)

The great move is complete, thanks to Tranquility Movers, as recommended by Erin ("movers by day, metal band by night"), and more thanks to Erin and Julianne for showing up to help [personal profile] uilos and me get the place into some semblance of order. Most bookcases and most furniture are where they're going to end up; will see how many spare bookcases we actually end up with. The programmable thermostat took substantially longer (and more people) to figure out than it maybe should have but I believe the living room will now hold steady at 20C.

That evening I ordered Indian from what I'm told is one of the best places on the Drive and we watched Spirited Away, which I may have not seen since it was in theatres. Quite enjoyable.

So now ... we have a place. It manages to somehow look much more spacious once we get our stuff into it, bookcases and furniture and all. I don't think it's forever but it's alright for now.
jazzfish: an evil-looking man in a purple hood (Lord Fomax)
["Hydro" is Canadian for "power company." When we were first looking at rental apartments we kept asking 'is the power bill included in this obscenely large monthly price?' and the agent kept saying 'yes, hydro's included for this unit' and we kept saying 'It's good to know that water is included but what about electricity?']

ME: Hello, BC Hydro. Remember me?

BC HYDRO: *is suspicious*

ME: *sigh* *reset password* *verify email*

BC HYDRO: Hi! Welcome to BC Hydro! What would you like to do?

ME: I'd like to have electricity in my new house.

BC HYDRO: We can do that for you, sure! Would you like to transfer existing service, or set up a new account?

ME: Well, since I haven't been a BC Hydro customer for the last two years because the city of New Westminster has its own power authority, I guess I'm setting up a new account.

BC HYDRO: Oh, you can't do that. You've already got an account with us, from when you lived in the city of Vancouver before, and we can't create a new account that duplicates an existing one.

ME: In that case I guess I'm ... transferring service?

BC HYDRO: Sure thing! Just tell us where you're transferring service from.

ME: How about from having disconnected it two years ago when I moved away?

BC HYDRO: Oh, you can't do that. You need to have service before you can transfer service. You'll have to set up a new account.

ME: ...


ME: This is not a Friday kind of problem.


Aug. 11th, 2014 10:18 pm
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
Move successful, for limited values of 'successful.' Movers arrived on time at 9 AM. They'd budgeted three hours for getting all the stuff out of the apartment. At 12:30 one of them said "Yeah, this is not all gonna fit on this truck." So they put out a call for another truck and another guy.

We took the cats over to the new place and awaited the arrival of the first truck. It showed up a little after two, with two of the (now four) guys. One of them stayed downstairs taking things off the truck, and the other took things off the elevator at the top. I assume both were putting things on the elevator. [personal profile] uilos and I got to haul things in from the elevator. I mean, the guy at the top moved most of the big heavy stuff, but... yeah.

After about the eighth bookcase I was approaching beat.

Did I mention that it was warm? We had the portable AC running full blast because it was somewhere north of thirty ("ninety") degrees and humid, and a south-facing apartment with lots of windows is prone to become oven-like in the late afternoon.

Around fourish the second truck and two more guys showed up and things picked up speed a little. We were done shoving everything into the apartment by five.

I do mean 'shoving.' The living room is still an undifferentiated mass of furniture. The bookcases are stacked three deep at the end of the hall so they wouldn't block off any of the pathway. We spent the evening sorting the boxes, of which there were somewhere over a hundred, and putting the bedroom more or less together.

The warm and stifling bedroom. A fan or three are required soonest.

Thankfully it has cooled off somewhat, now that it's nearly ten-thirty at night.

Oh, and there's no internet here until next Monday, because Telus (the phone company, who have to be contacted so that the small DSL provider I'm using can provide DSL) are big jerks. This may be awkward for work.

This has been the most stressful move of my life, including the one where only one person showed up to help in the rain. Ugh.

At least it's over. I go collapse now.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
Things what I need to do before Monday:
1) REST API documentation for work
2) Finish packing / deconstructing the office
3) Finish 'Blood on her hands' for writing group

#1 is stupid and I hate it. Okay, so actually it's just boring where it's not incomprehensible, but still. Bleh.

#2 is at the part where the last ten percent of the project takes the other ninety percent of the time.

#3 is ... um. I know how it starts and I know how I expect it to end but there's that whole middle part where it goes from A to C both plot-wise and emotional-arc-wise that I don't know how I'm gonna hack. Story of my life.
jazzfish: Randall Munroe, xkcd180 ("If you die in Canada, you die in Real Life!") (Canada)
Permanent resident cards have come in the mail! We are now officially Permanent Residents. The card itself is very strange, incorporating swirly text, two differently-coloured hologram-type things, and a small transparent window that's got a tiny version of the ID photo printed on it, in addition to the large photo. Difficult to forge, I expect, but also rather odd-looking.

In less happy news, I dumped much of a mug of tea onto my awesome keyboard yesterday. For awhile I thought it would survive but some must have splashed into the electronics. Currently the spacebar, back-tick, and right arrow don't, and some of the numbers are flaky at best. So I get to ship it back to Kentucky and have them fix it, for a $30 fee. Yay.

I'm currently using the Alphasmart Neo I bought in Blacksburg as a keyboard. It's... as keyboards go it isn't terrible, but the lack of function keys and Delete key, and the functional lack of an Escape key, are wreaking havoc on my normal computer-usage patterns. Oh well. It's just for a few weeks, and if it's too obnoxious I can either buy a cheap keyboard, or just use it in laptop-mode.

And we move in less than two weeks. I alternate between feeling like we haven't packed ANYTHING and like there isn't really that much more left to pack. I have lost all sense of which of these views is more accurate. It doesn't help that we've almost run out of boxes, either.

ugh thud.

Jul. 24th, 2014 02:14 pm
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
Spent half an hour this morning chasing Chaos around with a spoonful of wet food and a couple of pills.

Yesterday, found out CBS has revised the malaria guidelines as of Monday, and having visited any part of Jalisco (the state containing Guadalajara and Ajijic) puts you under a twelve-month ban on donating blood.

Too many things to pack and not enough boxes to pack them in. Somehow despite offloading an awful lot of books over the past six months to a year, we have almost the same number of boxes of books and we're running low on 703 banker's boxes.

Construction is ongoing in the apartment three floors up, a frequent buzzing/drilling/jackhammering noise.

We move in two and a half weeks. This is simultaneously not soon enough and not nearly enough time.

If you happen to see my focus please return it to this address.
jazzfish: A cartoon guy with his hands in the air saying "Woot." (Woot.)
Important news first: we have a place to live. We're moving out to New Westminster, two towns over. The new place is thirty-one floors up and directly on top of the Skytrain station. It's a little less nice than the current apartment but only a little: electric stove & fireplace instead of gas, no awesome superfast internet, office space will be awkward to figure out. It's got a decent-sized balcony, which is nice, and a view of the Fraser river (and, on clear days, Mt Baker) instead of Stanley Park / North Shore, which is a slight negative. Most importantly it's saving us a grand a month in rent.

In retrospect I'm a little bit sad to be living *directly* on top of the Skytrain; I would have enjoyed a short walk home after events. More importantly, I don't know what living in New West as opposed to downtown will feel like. Most of the people I want to see are out there, but most of the stuff I want to do (shows, the independent/artsy movie theatres, Stanley Park) are towards downtown. Will try it for a year or so, see how it goes. I expect we'll be fine out there.

Lease starts in August so we have a full month of paying double rent (boo) and getting the move sorted out (yay).

Over the weekend my aunt Susan came up from Atlanta to visit. Rather, she came up from Seattle since she was already visiting out there, but close enough. She got roped into games on Satyrday, which she seemed to like pretty well, and then dragged out to Chinatown and Granville Island on Sunday.

I like Susan pretty well. She's... I was going to say 'prickly' but that's not exactly right. I don't know how to describe her. I think it's to do with having lived with a bit of loneliness for so long that you get almost but not completely used to it. Or I might be projecting.

Regardless, we had a really good time. We (well, she) found a store in Chinatown that I've walked past dozens of times and never stopped in, that's full of fascinating stuff. I'd call it a junk shop except that they know what they've got and want real money for it. Example: an old laboratory glass bottle of HCl, where the label is made of raised glass letters on the bottle itself (awesome!), for $35 (yow!). And we poked in shops and galleries and wandered all over the place, and talked about all manner of things, and avoided roasting in the heat.

We'd made plans to go camping this weekend, but the combination of "fire ban" due to weeks of heat and drought, plus "rain saturday through monday" made that look like a less good idea. Stupid weather. Instead, tomorrow we're going off to what appears to be a live-action version of Myst. Will report back.
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
[personal profile] vass reads Finnegans Wake. "There's something just naughty about reading a book that not only do I not comprehend at all, but it's not intended to be comprehensible."

[personal profile] charmax made a vid with lots of Space Girls and a catchy tune. Good way to start one's day.

James Hance, author of Wookiee the Chew, has a new project: Firefrog, Firefly cast members portrayed by Muppets. Delightful, though you may have to scroll back a bit to see the sketches.

So, it's been a week.

It's pretty awesome to look out my work window and see big green cedars and the mountains behind them. It's less awesome to have my flow interrupted by screaming seagulls.

Our stuff finally got here Monday afternoon/evening, and we spent the next few days navigating very cautiously around piled boxes and furniture. At this point things have been unpacked sufficiently that we can sleep in our own bed, wear clothes other than the ones we packed, cook our own food (to include setting off the smoke alarm with pancakes: when they say "maximum heat output" on that one burner they ain't kidding), and even sit on one couch and chair. So that's around half the boxes and such, right there.

Everything else is "odds and ends," "Tucker's room" (which I've not unpacked because I've been working during the day and exhausted in the evenings), or books and games. For the curious, we have between 40 and 45 boxes of books, and 25-30 boxes of boardgames. It's hard to get an accurate count when a) you're using three different sizes of boxes and b) they're stacked up to six high and three deep.

There are dragonboat races tomorrow, down near Chinatown, and if I'm actually going to apply to Viable Paradise I ought to, you know, apply. So that'll take up most of the weekend. And then next week maybe I can start trying to be a sociable creature again.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
Three days after finding internet access, I've finally caught up on Dreamwidth. (It doesn't help that I'm effectively using DW as an RSS reader.) Now to wade through the dozen or so tabs I've opened.

The immigration lawyer hadn't filed the paperwork in time for it to have properly entered the Canadian immigration computer system (because $work hadn't gotten some required information to them in time), so we ended up making for the busiest Wednesday night the guys at the train station had seen in awhile. There was the searching through the computer for how to code "technical writer," there was the obligatory 'bad cop' routine of drilling me on the job and the information I'd provided to make sure I'm not trying to sneak in with someone else's paperwork[1], and finally the going back and forth between the office with the old dot-matrix printer... and then after an hour and a half or so we had our work permits. And there was much rejoicing.

We spent the night in an overpriced hotel (stupid Stanley Cup eating up all the hotel rooms near city centre) and took possession of the apartment Thursday morning. It's very nice: about the same size as the place in McLean but more windows, and high-speed internet, and a real washer & dryer, and hardwood floors except in the bedrooms. I think it'll work out. I won't know for sure until Monday when our stuff gets here.

Thursday afternoon we did some errand-running, and stocked up on food for the weekend. Didn't quite make it to the Zipcar registration place, so we didn't make it to Ikea, so we slept on the floor. If I'd had a real pillow I think it would have been fine.

Yesterday the rain stopped and the sun came out, for what I'm told is the first time all spring. Aw, the city stopped crying because I finally got here. We took sandwiches out to Cardero Park, and were just getting settled on the benches by the water when something sleek and brown and wet zipped up over the seawall, across the sidewalk, and down the other side into the harbor. It took about half a minute for my brain to stop shorting out and come up with "Otter!"

After a great deal of yelling at the movers, it sounds like our stuff is showing up on Monday afternoon. I expect I'll be taking a couple hours off from work to oversee the load-in. (ugh, work.) I'll make up the time this weekend by building my work desk and prepping my work laptop. Other than that there's a little bit of paperwork yet to do (temporary health insurance, bank transfers), and enjoying the gorgeous 17 degree weather.

[1] This was more harrowing than I'm making it out to be. Brusque guys in uniform with the power to crush my hopes and dreams are kinda scary, no matter how much I tell myself "they do this to everyone, it'll be okay."
jazzfish: "Do you know the women's movement has no sense of humor?" "No, but hum a few bars and I'll fake it!" (the radical notion that women are people)
So... that happened.

It mostly went by in a blur. [personal profile] uilos and I got on a plane Thursday afternoon and left DC for the start of the Great Moving Adventure. (I had to go through a nude-scan for the first time, and for the first time they caught my tiny pocketknife. Jerks.) We arrived in Madison, had dinner, and collapsed.

Friday through today was WisCon. It surprised me with awesome a bit less than last year; I expect that's because I was used to it this time. The panels and readings continued to make me reasonably happy (note to self: watch for works by Carolyn Ives Gilman and David Levine). Through great self-control I limited myself to no more than a dozen books (I think: three by Terry Bisson, another five of Aqueduct Press's small Conversation Pieces, two misc, one won in a raffle at a reading, and one from the Tiptree jury's overstock), all of which I was able to fit into the luggage. I do not say my luggage, because what with the moving process we've had to sort of combine suitcases and shove things where they'll fit. Still, it's all packed and will require no additional shipping.

I had a small handful of short conversations and spoke to absolutely no one that I'd-- no, wait, I did say hello to Claire Light, from whom I'd won a critique in an auction a few months back. But I can name five other people off the top of my head I'd meant to introduce myself to before the con, and another handful that happened to be there. In a shock to no one who's not me, I am terminally bad at going up to people and starting conversations. Oh well. Perhaps this will be forcibly improved over the next few months.

(Also, next year I fully intend to take advantage of the Friday morning writer's workshop, by having something submitted around April 15.)

(Also also, a big FUCK YOU to GAMA, who appear to have decided to move Origins to Memorial Day. NOT COOL, GAMA. NOT COOL AT ALL.)

And tomorrow we get up and board a bus to Chicago, where I will re-purchase tickets to Seattle and thence Vancouver, in the hope that the previous tickets will be returned as Undeliverable and then refunded. And then we arrive at the new apartment on Wednesday afternoon, take possession, and look at each other in befuddlement as we try to figure out where we're going to sleep until our stuff arrives on Friday.
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
As of today, for the first time in ten years I have no car, and for the first time in five years I have no fixed address.

Moving things are mostly coming together, and in some cases coming apart (there's a better-than-even chance I'll have to buy a second set of Amtrak tickets because I thought they'd be more like airline tickets, and instead of being in my emailbox they're instead somewhere in the USPS). Tomorrow will be a big day of making phone calls and sorting and packing things.

Still alive, but not terribly responsive. Ask again later. Mostly I just wanted to note the date of carlessness.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
I'm safely ensconced in the Outer Banks with John K-- et al, and am roughly half as stressed as I was when I got here. Since very little has actually been resolved I suppose this is progress. The bed is perhaps the least comfortable bed I've ever slept on: it crunches when I move and presses into my spine in curious ways. There has been a great deal of gaming, and some amount of hanging-out, and intermittent hot-tubbing and such.

We leave the beach tomorrow (boo) to spend a day or so with [personal profile] uilos's folks. Then it's back to DC. During the first part of the week I'll be selling Straylight (hopefully to Stef), bequeathing my aged stand mixer to A--, and generally running around like a madman trying to squeeze in last-minute au revoirs.

On Thursday afternoon we fly to Madison for Wiscon. There we shall have an amazing time for three-plus days, and then wake up too early Monday morning to get on a bus to Chicago. Once in Chicago we board the Empire Builder (no, not that one) for Seattle, where we'll change on Wednesday for a bus to Vancouver. At that point life becomes a blur of moving-in for several days before I start work on Monday the 6th.

holy crap this is actually happening

We left my mother with instructions to go to the apartment on Monday morning and oversee the movers as they loaded all our stuff onto a truck. She called on Monday afternoon to say that the truck driver had forgotten zie needed to be in DC and was instead hanging out in Minneapolis. So our stuff's getting loaded, um, today, actually. I hope. Delivery date's still sometime around the first or second. I hope we can get a more firm date soon so we can tell the apartment when to reserve the elevator.

Miscellaneous Other Nonsense
I still haven't received the final immigration forms to sign and send back (there have been all manner of explicable delays on both sides, but right now it's in their court) and I'm getting a little anxious about that. Work had a temporary shortage of laptops last week and will be shipping me a machine to arrive on the 2nd or 3rd of June. Due to scheduling my parents aren't able to come visit us in June and bring the cats so we've yet to work out how they're getting out to us.

A dear friend has taken time out from being a new mother to write me a reassuring and very helpful letter about myriad small immigration-related things, and I've been a horrible correspondent and not said thank you. So I'll go do that now.

And then I shall have breakfast, and maybe go walk on the beach.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
21 days for Dreamwidth, #16:
What are you glad you did but haven't really had a chance to post about?

D101, but that was months and months ago and it's more "haven't figured out what I want to say about it." (Or "to whom.") Most of my "glad i did that" events these days are along the "got to spend time with person X while it's still relatively easy to do so" variety.

I'm glad I started watching Avatar: The Last Airbender. There's just not much for me to say about it yet (only six short episodes in), other than "this is pretty cool."

I just told Facebook that I'm moving. One more step towards making it sink in that this is Really For Real Happening. (eep.)

The Burly Men will be showing up on Friday to take all our stuff away. At that point it's going to be a lot harder for me to keep thinking "this is all some kind of weird game, and when i get back from the beach i'll just be going back to work in the open-backed cube, same as the last seven months."

We'll be crashing with my parents for a few days after the beach, and then (by some yet-to-be-determined means, on some yet-to-be-determined schedule) heading out west in time to get there by the first of June.

And then... I dunno. The settling-in, and the meeting-people, and the finding-things, and all that, I guess.
As he thought of it, though, he could not imagine what "just living" might actually be. He had never done it in his life. But he wanted to do it anyway.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
21 days for Dreamwidth, #10:
Tell me about your default icon.

It's cropped from an image I found a decade ago on Howie Green's website. I've been feeling a little guilty about that recently and have been meaning to write Howie and ask for permission (and offer payment) to use the image and username. That, like so many things, is On My To-Do List.

I still need to sort through my now-mostly-unplayable computer games and my Miscellaneous Closet Stuff, and do some amount of herding of things into reasonable piles, but I'm mostly ready for the Burly Men to come and put everything I own in boxes.

This is kinda weird. I haven't had other people pack up all my stuff in... yeesh, twenty years. (That was the time I went away to summer camp for a week and when I came back we'd moved.)

It's starting to sink in that, yeah, I won't be here this time next month, for most values of "here" that come to mind.

Like I say, weird.

An amusing side effect of the NDP's unexpected surge: the new NDP Members from Quebec include a student voting in his first election, and an assistant pub manager who speaks limited French and spent the week before last in Vegas instead of campaigning. Oh dear.

(Are you sick of hearing about the Canadian election yet? Me too! But I have to suffer through the consequences, so you can as well.)


Aug. 4th, 2008 12:24 pm
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
Satyrday was, um, exciting. Also tiring and sore-making. On the whole, though, quite good. There were people. There was stuff. There was an empty apartment. Thanks to the people, the stuff and empty apartment were combined. I managed to go through the entire process without moving a single box, which I'm somewhat proud of. (I spent most of my time hauling bookcases and other furniture, calling for pizza, and directing traffic.) Around 2/3 of the pizza got eaten. The rest has been providing dinner, and will probably continue to do so for the next week.

Huge huge thanks to [livejournal.com profile] jonny_law, [livejournal.com profile] babushek and her baked goods, [livejournal.com profile] elf, [livejournal.com profile] airncbuh (and his drink run), Amelia from across the hall (who not only hauled way more stuff than passing-acquaintanceship calls for but graciously allowed a dozen or so sweaty strangers to descend upon her air-conditioned apartment), Jeff from ABG, [livejournal.com profile] pooka798, [livejournal.com profile] badmagic, [livejournal.com profile] silmaril, [livejournal.com profile] rislyn and her boy fiancé, [livejournal.com profile] vvalkyri, [livejournal.com profile] jmax315 (playing the part of [livejournal.com profile] bitbug), and of course [livejournal.com profile] uilos. You non-gender-specific guys are amazing, in both the hauling- and organizing-of-stuff departments, and I am humbled by your willingness to spend a Satyrday in August moving two people.

Everything fits pretty well. We've managed to combine two moderately full apartments into a single two-bedroom apartment. There's still some question as to how precisely the living room layout is going to work (too many chairs and tables) and where Keishi's going to live, but apart from that it's all coming together nicely.

Apartment quirks: the air conditioning now functions. The fridge and freezer still smell a bit questionable and can probably do with having some baking soda left in them for a few weeks. The stove appears to have been installed with the apartment in the late sixties; instead of an overhead microwave it's got an overhead convection oven. The sink in the master bathroom has the hot and cold water reversed. As in my previous apartment, the outside storage closet is nearly unusable due to condensation from the HVAC duct.

Whine, whine, whine. Except for the stove I'm pretty happy with the new place. Tentative plans call for this happiness to be shared on the evening of the 6th of September. (This means we have a Deadline for turning boxes of books into shelves full of books.)

My arms are still sore, so I should probably stop typing now.
jazzfish: an open bottle of ether, and George conked out (Ether George)
The Plan:

Virginians, start showing up on Satyrday the second of August (hey, that's this Satyrday!) at my place around ten. Stuff, starting with bookcases and other furniture and proceeding on to a gazillion bankers' boxes, shall be hauled next door and up a flight. (I'm moving from 1647 #1 to 1649 #3.)

Marylanders and DCists (Districtese?) are welcome to pop down to my place, or up to [livejournal.com profile] uilos's to help her load. Normally I'd be delighted to haul people to my place from the West Falls Church metro, but after an encounter with a vicious parking pillar, Straylight will be spending the week in the body shop. The 3T bus departs the metro every hour on the hour and is about a fifteen-minute ride. Once it turns onto Anderson off of Chain Bridge / 123 and passes through one more stoplight Magarity and passes the ex-Safeway on the left, pull the cord. Get off at the next stop; I'm across the street. ETA: Or call me (phone # in contact info post) when you get aboveground, and I'll either go get you or send a minion to do so.

At some point, hopefully by noonish, [livejournal.com profile] uilos will call me to let me know that she and her truckload and her minions are on their way over. At this point Vocelli's will be ordered in copious quantities. Shortly thereafter will be the ritual Devouring of the Za[1]. After this we empty the truck and finish moving whatever's left in my apartment, and then collapse.

I've got a decent amount of misc Stuff that I don't feel like keeping. Show up and you're welcome to what of it you like.

To quote [livejournal.com profile] uilos, because what she says goes for me too: I'm looking for a headcount of how many people are going to be able to help with moving. I'm also looking for what kind of pizza you like or don't like. If you want something to drink other than water while we move, lemme know in advance and I'll see about getting some. There'll be sodas and such for lunch [but let me know if you have particular requests]. I have the apartment for another two weeks, so I'm not at all concerned getting it into returnable shape this weekend.

I swear I think about things other than moving. One of these days I may even post about some of them.

[1] I cannot use this "word" without thinking of Sloan calling out "Hey babe, za's gettin' cold," followed by Ellen explaining to Geoffrey Richard, "I have to go. The za is getting cold."


jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
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Adventures in Mamboland

"Jazz Fish, a saxophone playing wanderer, finds himself in Mamboland at a critical phase in his life." --Howie Green, on his book Jazz Fish Zen

Yeah. That sounds about right.

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