Moving venture of gain and loss

By Ryn Gargulinski: CNJ staff writer

I took the long haul from New York to Clovis back in April. With boxes crammed full of sketchbooks, voodoo dolls and 54 ugly flowered dresses I have not worn in 13 years and never intend to wear again, I swore it would be a very long time before I moved again.

Does four months count as a very long time?

Now that I’m hauling it all from Clovis to Tucumcari to settle into a whole new world, the memories are moving back to me. They haunt me like a battered ghost. They attack me with that putrid vengeance you often get from things that have sat too long in the fridge.

One key point that had merrily slipped my mind was how much fun it is to go box hunting. Since my last move included 110 of them, this is not an easy task. Especially since every large store in New Mexico seems to have a box crusher hook-up which take boxes from cardboard to dust without even leaving the store.

Well, maybe they don’t turn to dust, but they get mushed up small enough to fit on a thimble and then wrapped in twine so tight it cannot be cut without losing an eye.
The joy of actually packing is its own epic in the moving saga.

At least this move seems to be a tad more planned out than one a zillion years ago back in Brooklyn. My roommate and I decided to wait until the day of the move to begin packing, due to a combination of laziness, procrastination and sheer stupidity.

We had about one hour to cram a three-room apartment into whatever cartons lay sideways about the kitchen. This meant hurling dirty jeans with clean underwear, damp towels with tattered notebooks and flammable items with lighter fluid into scattered boxes, which we promptly threw down the stairs toward the moving truck.

We were so hurried we even scraped the half-eaten food off our dishes and simply threw them in with the lighter fluid. All artwork – including my potato print rat painting on black velvet – was left hanging sideways on the wall.

Although I miss that rat potato print, purging is a necessity of moving – but it also seems to backfire. Although the Tucumcari box count may be down to less than 90 after my boyfriend made me throw out 53 of the 54 ugly flowered dresses, there’s still a hunk of junk.

At the same time I chucked at least five boxes of the dresses, we also happened across a second-hand store we’ve never been in. There I purchased – you guessed it – five boxes of dresses. Perhaps it was more like four, and one was not a dress but a flannel camouflage thing that is thick enough to merit two boxes of its own.

And we didn’t even get to the truck yet, which cannot be guaranteed to be waiting for us unless someone who is using one happens to move to Clovis and drops it off. Nor did they promise it would be large enough to hold 54 ugly flowered dresses.

Ryn Gargulinski is managing editor for the Quay County Sun. Contact her at: