We've moved from Baltimore, Maryland USA to Venice, Italy in pursuit of living our dream!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

A trip to the US- week 3

Yahoo.. the beginning of week 3 I did get my car back from the dealer, all fixed, but not without much agony and heartache through the 14 days leading up to it's return. I'd been getting daily updates from the service manager assigned to my car all this time, so much so that she had by now become a dear friend it seemed. And, when I arrived at the dealership to pick my car up finally, the technicians all came out to meet me. There were hugs and well wishes all around! I almost hated to leave them.... almost!

My spirits were improving, I had my car back, and could get around now to do all the numerous errands I needed to complete. First on that list was to take a box of 200 nearly new CD's to a record and tape shop to sell. Of the 200, they bought 40. Yikes. Again, the economy was not helping my cause here. Next, books to sell. Same story. Used booksellers were just not buying books. I did manage to sell off about 7 boxes of books, for 80 dollars. Did I mention that I had 2 rooms lined with books??? This was depressing.

The day of the international movers arrival was also nerve wracking. I just hoped and prayed that they actually would arrive to begin with. I had done my research, and ended up negotiating a contract with a company based in NYC. I had never done an international move, and had read some horror stories. Heck, I had my own horror stories from local moves I'd done in the past. This move had me scared to death, to be honest. Fortunately, the moving truck arrived as scheduled, and the two young men packed my stuff up and hauled it all to the truck. I have to say these guys were incredible. They packed boxes of my favorite very breakable wine glasses and dishes, gingerly handled my china cabinet which is loaded with glass and mirrors, helped take apart my sleep number bed (no small feat!), and even went to the yard to pack up Mike's Weber grill. Everything was organized, they were meticulous in their work, and left me with a good feeling. So, although I was nervous watching my belongings drive away in their truck, I had a comfort level that this would somehow all work out.

We only had a handful of furniture pieces being shipped to Italy. Nonetheless, the house now, for the first time, looked empty to me. Sadness hit me like a brick that evening. This now was very real to me. We had sold the house, we would not be returning, in two more short weeks someone else would be living in this place I loved so much. Ok.. I couldn't allow myself alot of wallowing. I, afterall, had made the decision to take a huge leap over to Europe, there was no time to look back. Get back to work, Karen! and thank god for Skype and the internet. I was able to stay connected to Mike every day. He was my lifeline, always on the other end with the right words of support and encouragement when I needed it.

In the midst of all my sorting and heaving, packing and hauling, I also had to deal many miscellaneous tasks related to the real estate contract- the home inspection, the appraisal guy, a structural engineer, the termite inspector. Just more stress. Fortunately, we got through each of these. I also got to meet our Real Estate agent for the first time, who , up until now, we had been dealing with via emails, phone and fax. She had worked hard and managed the whole transaction impeccibly. We couldn't have asked for more. Right before we got the contract I started lighting candles here in every church I walked into, praying for a house sale soon. I discovered Debbie had gone to our front yard and buryed an upside down statue of St. Joseph by the For Sale sign around the same time. I am convinced those combined actions turned the tide.

Once again, dear friends and former work colleagues made sure I was eating and had some company. Here at the end of week 3 I was doing more turning down of invitations than keeping them,as time was running out on me quickly. I had only a few more days until the estate sale would take place, then the house settlement, then I'd be on a plane back to Italy.

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