If Phase 1 was selling off what we could and then packing the rest, and Phase 2 was driving ourselves 2000 miles across the country...
then we've entered Phase 3, where the hero and heroine of the story, along with their two trusty pound rescues, find an apartment to get settled in TN.
For those readers who are interested in keeping track:
Phase 4 is going to be finding land, which we'll enter into quite rapidly
Phase 5 will be planning and making the property livable (electricity, water, etc.)
Phase 6 entails building the restaurant and adjoining temporary residence
which i suppose that phase 6.5 will be putting in a garden
Phase 7 is building the cottages and finishing out the farm
It all looks so simple when it's laid out like that, doesn't it? :-)
Kelly and I both wanted to keep a good diary of our transition from living the fast-paced, "big-city" life in L.A. to the rural life of middle Tennessee, but it's more difficult than I'd expected. A whole bunch of firsts keep happening and I've been too busy to take note of them, so here's a shotgun blast of everything.
We chose Murfreesboro because of it's location: It's close enough to nashville and it's neighboring cities of Franklin and Brentwood, (which I'm told compare to West L.A. and Beverly Hills, respectively) but still not too far from where we ultimately decide to buy land. This city is a lot like Orland Park, IL, where Kelly grew up, which is not what I expected at all. Shopping mall after shopping center, with strip-malls and mini-malls in between... and a 24-hour SuperWallmart. Think of a store. It's probably here. There's no Whole Foods, and there's no Ikea, but there's everything else. Every mall-based store is here in Murfreesboro. It's also this weird place where you can find BOTH jack in the box AND white castle AND sonic. TOO weird.
We found an apartment on Wednesday: a one-bedroom unit in a complex of about 200 We signed the lease on Thursday, and immediately emptied our cars of all the stuff that had been packed from floor to ceiling in each of them. I may have mentioned already that I brought my entire mobile kitchen -- the tools, spice kit, ingredients and pots & pans that I take with me whenever I go to work -- but there's also a box of day-to-day plates and a few cups & glasses we can eat from. The kitchen is a wreck still, but at least everything's here and it's organized in the carts & containers I'm used to, so I can find everything.
I made my first dinner in our new apartment, a veggie stir fry with brown rice. It felt great to get in the rhythm of peeling and chopping and cooking. It tasted wonderful, even though I didn't go through the motions of doing it 'just right'. I was so excited to be eating a vegetable that wasn't a French fry that I wasn't very concerned.
It's funny how time is so relative: It feels like 100 years since I cooked anything, and it felt like we'd been on the road for weeks, but it feels like I just packed my stuff a couple days ago.
So, of course, we spent our first night here, too. we were looking for a sofabed (which here is called a sleeper - a couple of confused salespeople set us straight on that after a bit!) but instead found a cute brown loveseat, a milk-chocolate color that's really comfy. So for the two weeks that we're here without our POD, we have no bed. Kelly bought an airmattress last night, but no pump, so he spread the thing out and started trying to blow up a queen-sized air mattress. WITH HIS MOUTH. I think he was grateful when I ordered him to go back out and buy the electric pump. He plugged it in and flipped it on, and the mattress was inflated in about a minute. This airmattress was just the $20 model, not the $60 model, so if you're a side sleeper, it throws your back completely out of line. I just piled a few pillows on the floor and slept there. He said it just needs more air, so I'll give it another shot tonight, but otherwise, there's a milk-chocolate loveseat with my name on it. I'm only 5'4" so I can curl up on it and be okay.
This morning, I woke up to Noodles crying to be let out. When noodles wakes me up, though, *I* have to go potty FIRST, and since I was not only semi-comatose from sleeping on the floor, but also rather disoriented from it being my first night in the new apartment, it took a minute for me to remember where the bathroom was. So, once I answered nature's call, I passed the phone to Noodles and took her outside. This place is VERY dog friendly, and there are poopy-bag stations all over the place. Also, since every apartment has its own door to the outside, it's only about 10 yards to a grassy area. Everyone seems to be pretty responsible for their dogs, too.
We've got a lot to do today, again. Lots of calls to make, dealing with electricity, water & cable (no gas, b/c it's an electric stove <sob> ) and Kelly's got to register his car. My registration is valid until February, but his expired. Also, we can get our drivers' licenses and library cards, too. We also have a week's worth of laundry, and I have to do some REAL grocery shopping. Buying produce at Walmart has much to be desired.
So, as usual, a novella from me... with more to come later... but for now, time to get moving!
Today I learned: nothing yet... it's too early!