Anna has been packing up. The house is starting to look pretty bare. We think the truck will be here during the first week of December to pick up all our stuff and head west. In the years since we moved here we’ve actually gotten rid of some stuff, so it seems like the move might cost us about half what it cost to get here. That’s a relief.

Packing the truck in Moline is going to be a breeze. We have plenty of space in front of the house and traffic is pretty light. Unloading in Oakland is going to be a challenge. Perkins street is busy — it’s pretty hard to find a place to park a car, let alone a moving van. In some ways the challenge of loading/unloading the truck is emblematic of the big changes we expect to experience in our transition back to the city. Traffic here in the Quad Cities is pretty much a non-issue. When we left the Bay Area seven years ago traffic was one of the main things that we were glad to be leaving behind. I suspect the traffic is still pretty bad, but we are thinking about ways we can avoid getting swept up into that particular storm.

Our new apartment has parking for one car and minimal storage space. The living space of the apartment is quite comfortable, but moving from a house with a basement where we can store all our extra stuff is still a challenge. We’re hoping to thin down the possessions even further. City living, especially in an apartment, means being very thoughtful about what items earn their way into one’s household. I decided to clean out my closets this afternoon and I was able to reduce my wardrobe by half. What a liberating feeling.

Today is the beginning of Anna’s last week in Moline. Things are going to be changing pretty rapidly for us now.

Sunday November 8, 2009 — Mark — Illinois