The final countdown
What is 4 x 24? Fewer hours than I have to purge two years of living from my apartment, that's what.
In four days, a French PhD student will be sleeping in my bedroom. Actually, she'll be doing whatever she wants in there, and I suppose she'll do it anywhere she wants, just like I did. She might even do it on my sofa. I won't be here to stop her. No matter what she does, I'm sure I did it better.
Ninety-six hours to transience and my house is still full of furniture, art, cookware and crap. You'd think losing all your belongings and mooching off friends would be easier. Don't people do it all the time?
Yesterday morning, I signed a contract with movers who've agreed to transport my antiques and irreplaceables back to Nova Scotia where my parents will reluctantly, but thankfully store them. Then, the new tenant arrived to see what of my furniture she'd buy, and last night I hosted a giveaway/livingroom sale I called, 'Dinner and Dibs'.
Basically, I sorted through all my things, lured some close girlfriends to my house with the promise of a home-cooked dinner and gave them first pick of everything I'd rather not pay to store or transport to England. Whatever they didn't want, I forced on them, like an annoying salesgirl working on commission. "Oh, Pyrex cookware is timeless, and would go so well with this sailor's cap!"
I'm stuck with a few dining room chairs, which I rescued (read: pilfered) from the basement of this building. At the time, I wondered why anyone would abandon something so nice, but now I see that furniture fate is inescapable and, chair by chair, they're going right back to where I found them so someone else can wonder the same. There are also some leftover books, deceivingly titled and disappointingly academic, from my university years: Pornocopia and Public Sex (among the less scandalous untouchables, Anthropological Theory and The Mass Media in Canada). Most everything else is claimed and awaiting pick-up.
Perhaps the greatest marker of the evening's success is having finally uncovered my house keys – one of life's little conveniences – which have been missing beneath the chaos for nearly a week.
The crumbs I'll be donating to the local mission today, and by Sunday, all evidence of my life here and my ongoing battle with mice and my creepy neighbour will be completely gone, save for bits of furniture the new tenant bought, that red paint I spilled in the sink, and the stack of papers that fell behind the fridge. These little accents will add to those left by the previous tenants: the good luck charm bolted into the oak frame of the doorway, unidentifiable trinkets lodged in the radiator, and little poops left by midnight visitors – the furry rodent kind, not the freaky weirdo sort.
Ninety-five hours to go...