So, we finally moved to Cleveland. My parents were a great, great help. They rented a car from St. Lou and drove down to Memphis, then my father and husband switched off driving the enormous Penske truck for the day-and-a-half trip. We towed our car from the back of the truck (an interesting experience in and of itself). I got to ride with my mom a lot, which was nice, and then also sometimes my husband, which was, of course, also nice. We drove something like 12 hours the first day, making it to just the other side of Columbus. Then we drove the rest of the way, another 4 hours or less, to Cleveland.
Unpacking the truck was uneventful. It was beautiful weather, which I didn’t appreciate at the time. Now, since I’ve seen how it rains almost every day here, it was really a blessing that the sun was out for our movers!! So, distributing everything around the house has been a very, very slow process. I did the bedroom first, and the kitchen second, the master bath third. Everything else has been kind of left to the “whenever” time frame, but I’m slowly getting it together.
Oh, a funny story when we went to return the Penske truck. My father was driving it, with my husband as passenger. My mom and I followed in the rental car. After my father turned the truck around for the fifth or sixth time, we started to think that he was lost. My mother said,
“Call him and ask if they’re lost.”
“I don’t want to call and ask them that,” I replied. “They’ll already be cranky about be lost, and I don’t want to aggravate them. Besides, he’s driving.”
Around that point, my mom’s cell phone rang. It was my husband, telling us that they weren’t lost, it was just that Cleveland’s streets are apparently nearly impossible to navigate with a truck that large, and there were various streets they needed to turn left on which bore “no left turn” signs, etc., etc. So, my father found a way to get to the street we needed, and we drove on and on and on, right into the ghetto. Complete with bars over the boarded up windows and groups of young people loitering everywhere. Every other building was either condemned, or a church with a massive chain-link fence around the parking-lot. I mean, it was interesting, and not as scary as it could have been, since it was broad daylight and all. Still, I wasn’t so comfortable.
“I’m not making eye contact,” I told my mother. I guess Mapquest doesn’t denote “good” and “bad” areas to travel in.
Eventually we came to the Penske truck place (which looked more like a really small privately owned repair shop to me), and the man there informed us that they no longer took trucks of the size we were trying to return. My father was non-plussed, as this was the location that the Penske company had told him to return the truck to. Thankfully, the other location was neither far, nor required addition ghetto-cruisin’.
After the ordeal, we went to kosher Subway, and it was wonderful. WONDERFUL. Shortly after that, my parents went back to St. Louis. They stayed over night in Columbus, and then drove the rest of the way the next day.
An interesting note about Cleveland’s Jewish community is how friendly people are here. Neighbors continually came over with goodies, or just to introduce themselves. Also, a lady in the community saw our moving truck and arranged for people to bring us dinner every night for the first week, while my kitchen was still in boxes. It was such a wonderful chesed!
Now, it’s just a matter of continuing to get things in order….slowly, slowly.