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Taos, Western Massachusetts

My Life in Boxes

 

While Hank was away finding a place for us to land in Western Massachusetts, I was packing, packing, and packing. I am taking care of the house, Hank his shop. I believe I have the better end of the deal. (For those who missed the last post, we are leaving Taos for Charlemont, pop. 1,200.)

My process was to start in one room, my office, then move onto the hall closet, then onto the next room. After a solid week of it, most of the house is now in boxes. All that is left are the glassed art on the walls and the large wooden boxes Hank built, plus the clothes, kitchen stuff, etc., I set aside to live on until we head out of here. It surprises me how little we need, but then again this is a temporary situation.

For me, it all comes down to finding the right boxes. My best source so far has been the recycling center. People bring the boxes they no longer want, usually flattened, and dump them into large receptacles. The trick is to come when the guys working there haven’t emptied them. It’s all in the timing because they do it all day long.

Sometimes I find great stuff like someone just moved here and no longer need the boxes. Other times I strike out and have to come back. I’m not complaining. They’re free.

When I was a college kid, I worked in a pants distribution warehouse filling orders. Once when one of the guys in shipping went on vacation, the boss asked me to fill in. That’s when I learned the proper technique to tape a proper box. It’s a skill that’s come in handy for many, many moves.

The week Hank was gone, I taped the bottoms of the boxes while I watched TV at night. The next morning, they were ready to fill.

Course, I’m nuts about bubble wrap, tape, and crumpled paper. Then, there are stickers and markers so I recall what’s in each.

Yeah, I started early, but I had the time, and besides I wanted to get this part done before I headed Back East for a week to help out with the new grandbaby, who was born June 29.

When I look at the boxes stacked in my office and in the hall closet, I think we have a lot of stuff. I did glean my possessions last summer — I don’t touch Hank’s — and I’m still doing it. But frankly, I like what’s in those boxes and feel they are worth hauling 2,404 miles away.

ABOUT THE PHOTO ABOVE: Flowers in my garden.

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