Getting Settled

After sixteen days in Logan, I finally have enough of my belongings together to be able to spend a night in my apartment on campus. Getting all of my things in one place has been far from a smooth process. My own road trip was meticulously planned and conducted with my car packed to the gills; Catie rode in the back seat with mountains of toys and activities piled on either side of her and boxes squashed into the trunk with finesse only an ex-FedEx package handler like myself could have managed. A great deal of my things were left for my ex-husband slash stuff-mover to pack into his vehicle and bring when he was ready. Originally, the plan involved my long leisurely road trip and his own slightly swifter one to meet in Logan semi-simultaneously so that I wouldn’t have to go too long without my library or kitchen equipment, and Catie wouldn’t have to go too long with only one parent to keep her busy. Alas… the best laid plans of mice and men go oft’ askew. The secondary road trip was delayed by a few weeks to secure more funding, then its start was somewhat less than auspicious as all four tires needed replacing barely outside Biloxi. Three days in, Terry experienced his most serious delay- a traumatic transmission failure leaving him stranded between Colorado Springs and Denver. Luckily it was on the cusp of a long weekend; I was able to leave Logan for an impromptu road trip across the entire length of Wyoming to Denver, CO. My effects needed fetching!

"Ever vigilant, Lincoln looks toward the rebellious South"

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The Callahan family, whom Catie and I have been staying with since our arrival in Cache Valley, have been amazingly generous with their home, their time, and their pantry; I honestly couldn’t thank them enough for letting us invade their space for so long. This feeling is only multiplied now that I’ve monopolized an entire weekend on a spontaneous tri-state rescue mission. Mr. Callahan generously offered to drive Catie and I there in his pickup truck so that I wouldn’t be required to fly to Denver then rent a box truck to drive back. I surely would have been blown off the road if I’d attempted to enact the box truck plan.

“Back east”, I had a joke that since I’d never met anyone from Wyoming or even known anyone that knew any Wyomingites, the state as a whole must be a front. Maybe that’s where people who were put into witness protection go to hide out, I would suggest. Now, having spent over 18 hours driving back and forth across the southern portion of the state, I’m pretty sure I was right all along. No one could possibly live in Wyoming on purpose. I-80 was almost comically windy. Without even any trees to break up the visual monotony, there’s absolutely nothing to see except a stern-looking statue of Abraham Lincoln and the occasional change in elevation. Visiting Wyoming makes much more sense, especially since they’ve got this really snazzy sticker-based tourism campaign at all of the visitor centers (and I hear that the northern 2/3rds of the state has some bona fide beautiful scenery).

Wyoming has STICKERS

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The very little of Colorado I saw in the light of day was much the same, with the exception of the beautiful Rockies looming over what I now consider to be the wrong horizon- in Logan, the Rockies are to the east! We had a hell of a time finding a hotel in the Denver metro area due to two large as of yet unknown-to-me sporting events and the Labor Day holiday, so we rescued Terry and let him hang out with Catie for the first time in weeks while we hunted a hotel north of town. In the morning, my belongings were liberated from the disabled van and then meticulously packed and tied down into the truck bed. Leaving Terry behind to attempt a transmission resurrection, our intrepid trio once more disembarked across the vast windy nothingness that masquerades as southern Wyoming. It rained quite a bit on the way back into Utah but, somewhat miraculously, none of the boxes in the truck bed got more than a little moist… until we got them into the apartment. As we walked in with arms full of boxes, the carpet made some uncomfortably distinct squishing sounds beneath our feet. Over the weekend, a water valve had begun to leak in the apartment above mine so now my living room carpet and master closet were absolutely drenched. Everything is fixed and hunkydory now with the exception of some marginally mildewed clothes from the closet, but it definitely wasn’t the victorious return I was anticipating last night. Hopefully things will start going my way now that all of my assets are on the left of the Continental Divide.

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