May 1 – June 10
We worked steadily on packing after our return from the CNC Coast ride, generally in the morning but often waiting until the afternoon so we could get a bike ride in before it warmed up. Although the deadline was tight and we had committed to loading the PODS on Monday May 13th, figuring this would give us ample time to deal with excess stuff that might need to go on pallets, we received good news in that our good friend Bonnie needed someone to house and dog sit for her, starting on, you guessed it, the Monday we’d load the stuff.
Still hanging over our heads was the decision about the PODS, that is do we keep the 12-footer in addition to the two 16’s or unpack it and hope all of the stuff makes it into the other two. That decision got easier when I heard back from Scott at Navis who advised that if we wanted to use pallets to handle the overflow, each would run about $1,000.
Figuring we’d need two or three, that cost would be nearly $3,000, a bit more than that of one of the PODS. And, if we kept the 12-footer, we wouldn’t have to unload it and pile all of that stuff in the garage until the big move day. So, decision made I contacted PODS to get a quote and found out that we had caught a lucky break, in that they normally they don’t ship the 12-footer across country, only the 16’s. But since we had an open order on the existing unit, they would ship it for us.
Their pricing is dynamic though, reflecting supply and demand and since I’d placed the original order two months prior and more people move as you get closer to summer, the cost of shipping the 12-footer would actually be more than that for the 16. But not substantially so and still less than the cost of three pallets. So, we filled up the rest of the 12-footer, sent it to storage and waited for May 13th and moving day.
Around this time, we received news from Power Property Management that our house was now vacant, the tenant having moved out around the first of May, requesting to use the garage for an additional week or so until he could clean it out. And just like that, all of the elaborate planning we had put into place spun on its head.
Originally, thinking we had lots of time to kill during our return to the west coast, which would involve driving our two cars to California, we planned on taking around ten days to do so and then killing time by couch surfing with friends or hitting a campground after arriving. Joining us for the drive would be the Cisco’s, J.B., Doug, and Evan, who were all scheduled to fly into Charlotte on Friday May 31st. We’d all spend the night at the Drury Inn near the University and then head to Ann and Rendy’s near Greensboro for two nights before heading west.
The vacant house now presented us with different options and we quickly concluded that it would be best for Joanna to fly to Los Angeles on Monday June 3rd to oversee repair work needed to correct damage done by the tenant and generally get the place ready for us to live in. I called up PODS and changed the delivery days to 4th and 7th for the 16-footers and 12-footer, respectively, and arranged for a crew to unload the two twelves on Wednesday the 5th.
In the meantime I coordinated with Power Property to have their maintenance contractors get a jump on the work needed, which included refinishing the hardwood floors in the front of the house, painting three rooms, hauling items left behind by the tenant (a closet full of clothes, a batting cage, etc.), electrical work to fix neglected issues and projects the tenant had started and not completed and a host of other items.
One brief note about the tenant, one of the two we’d had for the entire eleven-year period that we’d rented out the house and the longest of the two. A contractor by trade he felt it was in his purview to make a number of changes to the house, some positive (ceiling fans in all of the rooms, new interior doors, new tile in the back bathroom) and some negative (removed all of the closet doors, removed decades old knotty pine paneling my parents had lovingly installed in a remodel, tore out carpeting and put down cheap laminate flooring) not a one of which were we notified about or approved, specifically against the terms of the lease.
In the end the good probably outweighed the bad and given limited options for compensation, we kept part of his deposit and moved on. And thus, the loading on the 13th went smoothly and confirmed our decision to use all three PODS as we completely filled the two 16-footers. So much for the accuracy of the order takers with the company.
PODS loaded, we cleaned up the house and painted where necessary, labeling tools and accessories left behind whose only application was for the house. The 20th arrived and we closed out, finally meeting the buyers, a nice couple moving down from Ohio. And now we just waited for the Cisco’s to arrive and for the rest of the journey to commence. We ready to roll.