I thought I could finish packing and cleaning in three or four hours on Friday, so I could head south before noon – but the piles of crap were like mushrooms after a rain and more grubby corners kept revealing themselves.
Even with all my ex’s cleaning assistance, I didn’t finish till 3 – and could have gone on longer if the eager new owners hadn’t pulled up in the UHaul and told me not to bother with washing the floors, etc.
Those last few minutes locking up the house for the final time were hard. I cried.
A wiser person might have stayed in town one more night to recuperate from the strain and get a fresh start in the morning, but I’m not that person.
I drove out the driveway and kept on going… up 78th and onto I-5. I was headed for the holidays!with my kids in California.
Never mind that rush hour was beginning and I fed right into a traffic jam all the way through Portland, making for a getaway with all the drama of a morning commute. I didn’t care – I just needed to get out of town.
By the time the traffic thinned my spirits had lifted and I imagined myself making it at least to Medford before quitting for the night, up and over the Siskiyous in the morning and on into SF by supper.
A little south of Salem it began to drizzle. Traffic slowed to a crawl. Then my car lost its connection with the road – and I began to skate. It turns out that the week of 20 degree weather made the ground so cold that when the rain hit it, a sheet of black ice formed instantly. Thank god the road was dead straight because staying on the road was challenging enough at 15 mph.
I decided to bag it in Eugene with dear old friends if I could just make the turnoff. Miraculously the off-ramp and Eugene streets were clear and Christine and Bill plied me with champagne and cracked crab to celebrate my exit and safe landing. The gods were definitely smiling on me.
When the streets thawed (after a tasty lunch – thanks guys!) I got back on the road and made it over the Siskiyous before the next spate of bad weather rolled in. Still, it was seven hours on the road today and my butt is sore.
What amazes me is how serene and blithe I feel. I know I did the right thing by selling, and even though the next step has not yet revealed itself to me it’s ok.
As Christine pointed out last night, this is the first time I’ve not been responsible for someone or something else. No kids, no pets (for the moment anyway), no house, no yard, no spouse, no official job… just space and options.