I just won an entrenched battle against Apartment 21.
The war began long ago in the annals of history, but the final, decisive battle started last night at 9pm and only just ended.
Last Night – The Cleanup
I came back to an apartment literally filled with trash. Not even the trash that had been in the garbage can had been thrown out. My roommates had all moved out and I was left with personal items left in the bedrooms and in the bathrooms, trash everywhere, and a full refrigerator.
Just to be sure – I’m not blaming anyone. I am a little bit angry, but it’s fading. If I wasn’t the last one to go, I wouldn’t have known what my roommates did or did not want to keep, so I would have been more hesitant to throw things out. I furthermore might have left some stuff just in case my roommates wanted to keep some of it, and my friends and neighbors who helped me out actually did want to keep some of it, so that was a bonus. All I’m saying is that after a long, tiring drive, the last thing I wanted to do was clean until the wee hours of the morning.
I got back at about 9:30 and started bagging and trashing. My neighbors, Fong, Jeff, Ying Ying, and Victor caught me throwing stuff out and asked if I could help them move. In turn, they helped me throw stuff out and scavenged whatever they wanted. I helped them move at 12ish. I ended up getting back to work on my own apartment stuff around 1am. Then the rest of the time I spent organizing what I was going to keep and what I was going to donate to Goodwill and loading it into my car. This included emptying the fridge and the freezer.
By the time I was done, I was dizzy with exhaustion and I was making mistakes. I forced myself to keep going instead of sleeping. I thought I loaded everything I needed, and then I dropped the time sensitive frozen goods off at DK’s apartment, where I will be staying until the end of summer and from where I am typing this post right now. I was so intent on “finishing this fight” (cue Halo music) that I bought envelopes from Shnuck’s to drop off my key in.
When I finally got back to DK’s apartment, I couldn’t sleep and kept getting up to do things. I remembered then that I had forgotten the food and fruit that my mom had packed me from the suburbs. I had locked myself out. So I called CPM emergency and got a number for the locksmith, who didn’t pick up. I figured I’d call them in the morning. But for some reason, I had forgotten the biggest thing.
The Big “Oops”
The entire reason I am staying at DK’s place instead of practicing living in my car is because I have an important charge. I’m keeping Alfred, Lord Tennyson, my betta fish, in good hands until I can discharge him to my Korean TASC daughter, Cody (I just realized how strange that sounds).
Anyway, I woke up in the morning at 9am and called the locksmith company again to find out how I could get in, and was informed that there would be a charge of $50 to get back into my apartment. At first, I dismissed it. I wasn’t going to pay $50 to get some blueberries out of the fridge and turn the outside light off. Then I realized. I’d been in such a rush taking care of the rest of the apartment that I’d forgotten my betta fish, Lord Tennyson, in my room, and the cleaning people probably wouldn’t take too kindly to his presence.
I quickly called the locksmith back and agreed to meet them at 12:30 to get Tennyson out. Then I waited with DK for the Comcast guy to set up cable at his new place, ate brunch at Einstein Bagels with him, then went to donate stuff to goodwill. I figured I might be able to get into the apartment myself, so I grabbed a wire coat hanger in hopes of lifting up the plank of wood blocking the porch door.
Good thing I brought the coat hanger.
Because it was useless.
When I got back to my CPM apartment, I climbed the balcony to my 2nd floor porch, hoping nobody would call the cops. I tried to jimmy the wire between the sliding doors to get to the plank. Then I realized that the door that wasn’t blocked by the plank was jiggling. I planted my hands against the glass and pushed. Sure enough, the door just slid right open. The trust I’d had in that plank of wood all year long was instantly betrayed. Still, I managed to get in, called the locksmith back and told him I wouldn’t be needing him anymore. I emptied out my apartment for the last time, taking my fish and refrigerated goods, and here I am.
Great! Just enough time to head back to Chicago
…and get there in time for dinner. Damn, my life sucks. I forgot a box and my passport in the suburbs. This term has never been this apropos…