Tag: moving

HIWDtS: Bye-bye, lady.

Every once in a while, I encounter the N-Judah Greeter. He is a sweet man who says hello and waves to everyone who boards the train, and says goodbye and waves to everyone who leaves.

Most people avoid catching his eye, because that is his signal that it is okay to wave and talk. He spends a lot of the time in suspended animation, looking expectantly at each new passenger, hoping for eye contact. As soon as the person looks up, he waves and exclaims, “Hello!” Women get a “lady” tacked on the end. If the person does not respond, he repeats himself a few times, then stops and moves on to the next person.

If you, like me, respond, then there is a short script:

“Hello, lady!”
“Where are you going?”
“OK, lady!”

On the way out, there is a similarly enthusiastic send-off. If it happens to be a Friday, as it was when I last saw the Greeter, he waves and says, “Bye-bye, lady,” then adds, “Have a good weekend!”

The Greeter has a thankless job. Because he is friendly on Muni, he is mostly treated like a hostile stranger. I have learned to take my enthusiastic greetings and send-offs where I can get them, because I never know when it will be the last time I see a place.

Except now I know. I know when my last Muni ride will be. I know when I will close the front door of my home for the last time, when I will drive to SFO for the last time, when I will get on a plane with my bags and my cats and fly over this giant place to a dream.

My beloved FunkyPlaid and I are moving to Scotland. Now that I can type that, it is real to me. He leaves in just over two weeks to get settled and start his PhD program, and I leave in just under two months with Zen and Torgi in tow.

Almost eight years ago, FunkyPlaid made this trip alone. I drove him to SFO and dissolved at the security checkpoint. I joked with him the other day that I won’t be crying this time, but who am I kidding? The moment is too big for me not to cry.

This departure is a culmination of so much planning, hard work, imagination, and passion, bolstered with support from our dear friends and family, and sprinkled with a bit of good luck and great timing. Most days it is difficult for me to picture the end result because there is still so much to do, and I find my motivation in knocking things off to-do lists. But every once in a while, I look up from the cardboard boxes and think of the adventure about to begin.

Bye-bye, lady.

[box type=”shadow”]I ride a shuttle to work. It is a really nice shuttle and the first time I have ever had this luxury, causing me to overthink pretty much every aspect of it, especially where to sit. And now I overthink where I decide to sit in every open-seating situation, so I’m writing about it in a series called How I Decide Where to Sit.[/box]


I dreamed of preparing to move away. Everything I owned had to be packed into suitcases and boxes. The sky outside was light but I knew it was nighttime. As I packed my clothes, they changed colors and shapes. Some of them hopped or crawled out of their containers. It was a losing battle. Finally I decided to leave with empty suitcases. As I was zipping the last one up, I looked down to see a necklace I lost a decade ago: an iridescent glass bottle shaped like a teardrop with a tiny cork stopper. I put the necklace around my neck and left, empty-handed and smiling.


What I will/won’t miss about my flat:

  • pimp/ho fisticuffs during the wee hours;
  • siren orchestra of Fire Station #3;
  • the little man who slept by the front door of my building who would always say he was sorry when I tiptoed past;
  • surly neighbors;
  • always-packed laundromat;
  • lanky smokers in front of the corner bar, all elbows and coals;
  • lack of street-lamps;
  • single-paned windows;
  • tissue-thin taxi brakes;
  • the 2, 3, and 4 bus lines, especially that tschhhhhh noise;
  • the Angriest Beggar who called me “sweetheart” when he needed anything and “bitch” when he realized he wasn’t going to get it … every single time;
  • bridge-and-tunnel screechers after the bars close;
  • and every single unexplained loud noise in the night.

It’s been quite a year for me here. Living in this neighborhood definitely challenged me; working and living in this neighborhood exhausts me. I am looking forward to living in the “suburbs”, sleepy quiet, near the ocean and the park and not much else. Most of all, I am looking forward to living with my partner in a proper house that we will furnish and care for together.

Goodbye, little nest.  Onward to the next roost!


I dread opening my RSS reader these days. Right now there are 876 unread items glaring at me, from a total of 269 feeds. How does anyone keep up? Every time I attempt to pare down the list, I get fed up, close the browser window, and pick up my book.

In other news, thank you for your comments on my upcoming move. We’re going to do it ourselves after all, with, to quote a famous band, a little help from our friends. That means I have to be diligent about tossing out everything I don’t need before the 3rd. Good thing I like culling.

My new-to-me XTi is about 24 hours from being in my hot little hands. Let the picture-taking, possessions-tossing, information-ignoring fiesta begin!

dear lazyweb

Dear Lazyweb:

Do you know of any experienced, inexpensive, and reliable movers for a cross-SF move? My usual movers are booked on 3 May, and I am morose, bereft, etc.

FunkyPlaid mentioned something that sounded like “renting a truck” and “doing it ourselves” but I think he fell down and hit his head because I cannot drive trucks and I have the lifting power of a piece of arugula.

All non-Yelp recommendations will be gratefully welcomed. Cheers!