unpacked and moved in

My favorite part of my house is to stand in front of the refrigerator.  I asked around and most people set their central air to 78 degrees and have ceiling fans on high.  I set my air to 78, turned on the fans and feel hot.  I am constantly sticky and prefer 70 with fans, but everyone says that’s cold and it would mean my electric bill would be high.  I’ll just suffer for another week until classes start and I’ll be in air-conditioning all day, every day.

For the last few days, I have been straight up camping inside my house.  I slept on my camping Thermarest and sleeping bag because I neither had a mattress, blankets, or linens.  I slept on the floor for two days until the mattress was delivered and I bought new linens and a comforter.

I sat on the floor for two days on my yoga mat until I finally found a good enough sofa.  I tested over 50 couches in many stores and finally settled on one.  It happens to be new but discounted.  I try to buy things only that I love, and although I do not love it, it was good enough.  I am grateful to sit on something other than the hardwood floor, somewhere I can stretch my legs out while I study from heavy textbooks.

Standing in front of the fridge, I have been drinking out of my camping Nalgene bottles because I don’t have any glassware.  I have since bought two glasses at a thrift store.  I only bought two because I only liked two.  I am inheriting a full dining set of plates from Publishing friends, nearby.

I went to Costco and bought enough cleaning supplies probably to last six months, if not the entire year.  I bought new Tupperware called “Snapware” by Pyrex both glass and plastic.  I am super excited about the snap – leakproof containers since I plan on bringing breakfast, lunch and snacks with me every day to class.  My class schedule is Mon-Fri, 8-5:30 pm, August-December.

I am working on picking up a small bistro dining set with two chairs for my kitchen tonight so I can have somewhere to sit instead of standing while I eat my cold tomatoes from the fridge.  I did turn on the stove to steam dumplings but more to check the stove worked.  It is an electric stove, not nearly as good as a gas stove and takes much longer to heat up. I’m planning on trying the oven tomorrow to roast brussel sprouts and maybe checking my dehydrator, drying apples.

I went to all the grocery stores in the area (Compare Foods, Li Ming’s, Krogers, Harris Teeter, Whole Foods, Food Lion, Costco) to find my foods.  The local Spanish/Latino grocery “Compare Foods” store has the best prices for chickpeas/garbanzo beans.  Kroger’s sells peanut butter in large quantities inexpensively and I bought the entire section of Almond Milk at Whole Foods.  Hopefully I am stocked for the month until my CSA begins in September.

It has been madness, running around, going to some stores twice, even though I had a list but forgot items.  I am determined to be settled before orientation next week.  All my books arrived in the mail except one, which hopefully they can send another copy because it didn’t make it to me.

Also, for those of you interested, when I removed my boxes from the storage unit, several more items were wet and didn’t make it – the modem, the fuzzy winter boots grew mold, the Anatomy book had several hundred pages stuck together, and the storage unit manager already threw away all the linens (flannel bed sheets, duvet cover, etc).  I don’t know where my two booties went. Did he throw those shoes away too? The rest was salvaged and the insurance is paying out the full claim of $2,000.

Amtrak update: I called Amtrak twice while I was in NYC for a status updates and waited on the phone for 45 minutes each time.  I don’t care enough to continue with the claim, since the $2,000 will more than pay for all the items missing or damaged.

How much is your stuff worth?

I am sincerely appreciative that I have no attachment to material things, however I am saddened by today’s phone call from the manager at my storage unit.  They called and said the air conditioner outside your unit leaked and water entered your unit.  I won’t be there to inspect the unit or contents, but I filed a claim to be reimbursed $2,000, because that is how much I insured.  I should have insured more, but at the time of signing my paperwork, you never think you really need insurance.  I won’t be back for a month to inspect the unit myself, but they will send pictures tomorrow and then I can see if it is a “flood” or just some “water damage” and determine if it was only the bottom boxes that were on the floor were damaged or all of them.

Fortunately I am resourceful and very organized.  I have scanned receipts for the majority of items in storage and I have a detailed spreadsheet of all the contents organized by box to file my claim.  In addition, all clothing items were packed in a trash bag, prior to putting it in the cardboard box when I shipped the items from San Francisco.  When I was packing, I was concerned the items might get wet in transit.  I think though I did not pack my shoes or sleeping bags in trash bags which may be a loss.  Even if everything was wet, I have faith that the trash bags might have saved my clothes.

Although, Durham is not a major city and likely does not have Task Rabbit services, I’m sure I can find someone to go into my storage unit, throw away all the cardboard boxes and move all my items to another storage unit so they won’t grow mildew.

Needless to say, it’s not the worst thing that could happen, but I wasn’t expecting to start my new life at Duke with nothing.

On a brighter note, I did sign a lease and I do have housing for the year.