On the Move

I counted the moves: 24 that I can remember. That is a lot of different places I have lived.

The most recent move, I hired a mover for the big stuff, but did the rest myself.  I lost count of all the boxes and tubs I moved using my car.  It was endless, or it seemed. I took two days off work to move, but made many more trips for about a week.

Anyone who has moved recently can relate to what a huge experience moving becomes when you are relocating your entire life.  Three months later, I am still sorting, pitching, donating and reorganizing.  Thankfully, my move was across town, not across the country as friends have done. I have moved from town to town, I’m not sure how I did it.

In my sorting I am finding items not seen in 20 years.  Buried in boxes are papers, photos, artifacts and books from school. These things are interesting to revisit, but much of which I will not keep.  There is little sentimental value in most items, they represent experiences in life, not lost treasures.

I did find a large collection of books, not my hardcover books, but paperback books from my early days, even a couple of fictional books from grade school.  I also collected a variety of paperbacks from the 1950 to the mid 1970s, a few classics but mostly sports biographies. 

As many times as I have moved, one would think I might have thinned-out my possessions.  My last move was almost 15 years, so I got complacent and gained items instead of reducing.  When you are hauling box after box, you repeatedly tell yourself that you are going to downsize.  Why move all of this stuff again?  Moving and finding room for things does encourage you to weigh the importance of those items, in both a physical and emotional sense.

I am tempted to refer to the late George Carlin who had a famous comedy routine about how much stuff people collected. What the hell.

We are a consumer society so buying shit is what we must do. Jobs, wealth, taxes, keeping up with Jones. This gets exhausting, especially when we have to move it. When our quantity of stuff outgrows our space, we buy a bigger house. We becomes a Jones.

Life is a journey we make. And so does our stuff.

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