The last time I moved to a new city was when I came out to Seattle from Missoula. I had everything I needed/owned in the back of a car and there was still room in the car for my girlfriend. And all her stuff. And our friend Bob Knutson. We stopped at Senor Frog's in Spokane on the way. It was tacoriffic.
Well, that was almost 15 years ago. The girlfriend is now the wife of almost 13 years. A home got purchased. Kids got had. Old got got. And stuff accumulated. Up until lately, that stuff has been the big issue. Getting rid of the stuff, throwing it away, donating it, selling it. We seem to have found a moving method, though, that will be cheaper than the full on Van Lines and less shameful than attempting to fix friends' ruptured vertebrae with pizza and beer so stuff management does not weigh quite so heavily. More on that in future posts.
So as the stuff anxiety lifts, other anxieties now creep in. Because something must always fill the anxiety hole. Team Moe is launching this exciting new life in this new city soon. There will be cheaper bigger houses, friendly people (at Caribou Coffee and elsewhere), great schools, mind shatteringly cold temperatures, more and better career opportunities, less of a chance that I'll inevitably end up working at Microsoft. And we brought this all on ourselves. IT WAS MY IDEA with the full support of my employer. But now I think about what I leave behind. The relatives and neighbors who formed an astounding support network that we never managed to repay. The friends and colleagues. The fact that really most of the time a jacket will do.
I think it's easy to see the duality of destination and former home in stark terms: I left there and went there, that's old and this is new, I want that now and I don't want that any longer. But while I don't regret our decision to move (except when St Paul had a high of -4 the other week), I am increasingly aware that it's not a promotion or an escape or a copout or a triumph or anything. It's just a trade. We give up our veteran pitcher to get a hot young prospect. Swap our point guard for a center. We embrace change. And it will be hard and it will be easy and it will be confusing and it will be wonderful and it will sometimes be lonely as hell.
But we will go. In early March. On a train. The reason for the train is that we felt driving out there would be TORTURE and flying would be strange because you sit down for three hours and there you are in your new home. We want that feeling of transition. But something tells me a feeling of transition will happen no matter what we do.
Sometimes I think I get less funny all the time. Other times I feel like well hell I just don't need to be funny all the time. But that doesn't really change the first feeling.