The time is fast approaching for Mum to return to her own home.  It’s been nine months and the experience has been rather like a pregnancy.  The first three months were not terribly remarkable.  Sure, there was the queasiness in the morning.  Mum was in the habit of rising at an ungodly-early hour, such that I was sure I would ralph daily that first few months before the nausea abated.   The second “trimester” changes became even more noticeable and intrusive.  In lieu of an ever expanding waist line, I dealt with the escalating encroachment of Mum’s “things” into my space.  The past ninety days the discomfort and annoyance has grown daily.  At this point, not unlike a pregnant woman, I’m counting the days . . . the hours . . . the minutes until the blessed event. 

The preparations for sending Mum home are in full swing and it’s going to require the precision and coordination of a military maneuver; ergo, I have taken to referring to it as Operation Relocation.  How can this possibly be such a behemoth undertaking?  I’m glad you asked.  Now, I wouldn’t classify Mum as a hoarder exactly.  She just likes her stuff and never gets rid of any of it.  In rebellion of growing up in such an environment, I tend to be rather Spartan in my decorating style.  I’m not much for knick-knacks or an over abundance of furnishings; thus, providing Mum the opportunity to bring more and more and more and more shit to my house the longer she stays.     

It started small, but then it always does.  Mum arrived with one large suitcase and enough “creature comforts” to fill to capacity the back of my Kia Soul.  I know it’s a small car, but it has a significant amount of cargo space with the rear seats down.  Really, it does.  I have no idea why they don’t make a bigger deal of that in their sales pitch, but then I guess rap hamsters have a greater appeal to the car buying public.  “You can get with this or you can get with that, but this is where it’s at” is a powerful argument for choosing your next vehicle.  I bought mine for the retro red and black interior and the great gas mileage long before the rodent campaign was launched.  Anyway, Mum’s house is only a two hour round trip, so we made regular runs in the beginning each time filling the Soul.  Mum needs a copious collection of chattels to console her.  She is also a faithful practitioner of retail therapy.

I know you’re thinking, “Why doesn’t dim Dee just start taking the junk back a little at a time starting now?”  I would LOVE to.  The problem is that Mum can’t part with any of it now that she has it.  The portable air conditioner is a perfect example.  The overly large contraption is forever in the way.  October has now ended and we’ve had a surprisingly mild summer only reaching 90˚ a couple of times.  I figure this is a great candidate for a return load.  Mum doesn’t want to let it go yet.  “You never know” when we might have a freak heat wave.  The story is similar for the port-a-potty, she never used (thank God).  I only have one bathroom and “you never know.”  There is also the new vacuum cleaner she bought during a recent Costco visit.  “You never know” when both of mine may break.  Did I mention she wears the same shoes whether they match the outfit or not? She has at least ten pair as backups; because, “you never know.”

I believe I can do it in one trip with strategic packing, use of a full-size pickup along with the Kia and Mum’s Buick.  The now-not-so-new recliner – a powered model that motors up to a standing position for easy egress which Mum bought and had delivered when she first arrive – will necessitate the truck.  Should I be unsuccessful in conscripting one, I checked and, though I’d rather not, I should be able to strap the gargantuan beast to the top of the Kia.  Truck or no truck, I should be able, with adequate preparation, to complete Operation Relocation in a single weekend and proceed directly to my Relocation Celebration.  What’s my Relocation Celebration plan?  Nothing fancy, I think I’ll sleep in my own bed until noon; drink milk straight from the jug; eat Chinese morning, noon and night; turn the volume on my music up to 11; sit at my laptop writing for as long as I like; dance bare-ass naked through my half-empty house; and, oh yeah, burn the baby monitor.  I’m a simple woman.

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