It has been 16 days since my last post to this blog. Instead of writing, my days are filled with boxes, tissue paper, shrink-wrap, and a fair amount of cussing.
Boxes are stacked seven feet high around the perimeter of almost every room. While that’s daunting enough, the rooms have also shrunk under the weight of our furniture and we have spent days moving things here, there, and out.
Big is not always better, but there’s something to be said for consistency. One of our favorite homes was also the smallest, but inevitably we would leave our small home in exchange for a home of grand size, followed by less home before moving back to more home. . . my husband seems to finally understand my pain.
For the first few days in our new world, I walked out the front door and ran up and down the streets of the neighboring communities, escaping the mass of boxes for at least a short time. The problem with these runs is they will not end on a whole number.
A 5-mile run may end at 4.89 while the 8-mile run accidentally stretches all the way to 8.67. The return route never seems to match the one going out. Finally, I drove myself four miles down the road to the Atlantic + Yadkin Greenway, a 7.5 mile paved trail whose name reflects its past as an active railway corridor from the early 1900’s.
Dirt trails meander through the middle of the forest where markers memorialize various events from the 1750s. Benches sit strategically where one could gather their thoughts, or catch their breath.
At the two-mile mark came the calm waters of Lake Brandt stretching as far as the eye could see – in stark contrast to the cold, white-capped rapids of the Nantahala back at home in the mountains. A wooden foot bridge continued the path across the lake and along the shore where hundreds of lily pads filled the water’s edge.
Saturday brought with it throngs of people, dogs, runners and cyclists. Local companies sponsored aid stations along the trail with Gatorade and bottled water, while a service road dividing the trail from a graveyard boasts restrooms with flushing toilets and a water fountain. A sign warns that the 20 mph speed limit applies to cyclists as well as vehicles, and pedestrians maintain the right-of-way at all times. While these runs were glorious, they always ended with more boxes to unpack.
Some days my husband would tell me to leave the boxes and he would take me out for lunch. He introduced me to Moe’s (“Welcome to Moes!“), and to delightful neighborhood bistros.
A young couple sits quietly at the corner table, a grandmother replaces the pink bow in her fidgety granddaughter’s hair again, and college-aged girls discuss their 4am evening on the town. Business associates are talking and laughing, while others are clearly stressed by a morning in the office.
Music plays in the background and the news silently rotates on large TV screens. My husband and I smile at what a different world this is from where we came, and we linger over this lunch.
A few boxes still litter the floor, pictures stand ready to be hung, and furniture sits awkwardly in every room. All of it will still be there tomorrow . . . and tomorrow can wait.