Monday, July 07, 2014

Moving isaac & ricci to atlanta

We helped son Isaac and his bride Ricci to Atlanta, GA this past week. Carrie took Jane and me down to Anderson Tuesday night so we could drive one of Isaac's cars down and then fly home. The guys from the Exodus House had already loaded the Uhaul with all their belongings, so the two of us spent the night at the Anderson Hampton Inn (which was really nice). Carrie said her goodbye's and headed back to Fort Wayne. Then Wednesday, July 5th was moving day.

We arrived at the Exodus House around 8, and after loading up a few extra items, it was time to leave. Stevo was there, and the five of us had a time of prayer. It was the first time I'd really felt like praying as a group in a long time. All of a sudden things got a bit emotional and then we all got teary-eyed and said our good-byes. Stevo and Isaac had started the House four years ago, and they've been through quite a bit together. It was a little sad to see this phase of life come to a close. They are good guys, but the House is in good shape and I'm sure Isaac's replacement (Randy) will do well.

We finally pulled out around 8:40 am with Ricci leading the way in the Focus (and Crosby the dog in the back seat under the influence of sleeping aids). Isaac was in the middle with the Uhaul because he was the only one that didn't have a GPS-capable phone in his vehicle. Jane and I brought up the rear in the Subaru. We made our way to I-69 South and took that to I-465 in Indy, then we caught I-65 south of Indy and took that through Indiana, Kentucy, and into Nashville, TN. I think we caught I-24 in Nashville and took it to I-75 which took us to Atlanta. If I remember correctly we only stopped three times (or maybe four) for gas. There was a little road construction, and we got caught in rush-hour traffic in Chattanooga, but somehow we all managed to stay together for the whole trip. On one of those 6% inclines in Tennessee the Uhaul started smoking as we were chugging uphill. We pulled off at a rest area and a trucker told us what was wrong and just to let it cool off. It was fine after that. We finally got to Atlanta and had to take I-275 (?) from the Northwest side to the Northeast side. All in all it was a good trip, but it did take us a little longer to get there than we anticipated. Eleven hours of staring at the back of a Uhaul without ever using cruise control was a little tiring, but I didn't really feel too bad.

The house they are renting is in the suburb of Stone Mountain. It is less than ten miles off the interstate (do they call it the Loop, or Belt?), but it seemed we wound around and around. Anyway, we finally arrived at their house on Ellis Street around 7:30 pm or so. We had to do a little maneuvering to get the truck and both cars in the driveway, but we managed. We were glad the electricity was on. We unloaded some things Wednesday night and it was hot, hot, hot. I worked up quite a sweat. The biggest thing we did that night was CLEAN though. The house was a bit dirty. The fridge, sinks, tub, and toilet were especially dirty. The toilet seat was actually black, but Jane managed to get it a fairly clean white again. After doing all we could for the night, Jane and I then headed to our Super 8 hotel in Decatur. It was about 10-15 minutes away. I don't know if we could have found it without GPS on Jane's phone. It wasn't a 'super' hotel, but it had a bed and it was about as cheap as we could find. It ended up being located in a nice area too. Decatur is a growing burb with lots to do. Not that we saw anything Wednesday night, as we passed out sweaty and gross.

Thursday we got up and headed back to Isaac's. We cleaned some more, then unloaded the truck. It didn't go too bad. The heaviest things were the two couches and the motorcycle. My back was a little sore, but not as bad as I thought it might be since I'm so out of shape. So we got the kitchen, dining room and living room looking pretty good, then we all went to downtown Decatur for supper and kind of walked around. It's a neat little place.

Friday we slept in and Isaac and Ricci came and picked us up at our hotel. We went for breakfast/lunch in Decatur, then walked through the Emory campus where Isaac will go to school. It is a pretty nice school. After that we drove over to where Ricci will be teaching.
Hess Academy is located in a Presbyterian Church and Ricci describes it as sort of a "hippy grade school." I think that's great. After that we drove around and then just went to their house for supper. Isaac cooked brats on the grill and we just visited the rest of the night until they took us back to our hotel - which happened to be right about when everyone's 4th of July fireworks were getting done, so there was a little traffic. Another good day.

Saturday we flew back home. We drove from our hotel and got to Isaac and Ricci's around 8 am. They then took us to the Atlanta airport - which is on the Southwest side of town. It only took about 30 minutes as there wasn't much traffic at that time of day. So they dropped us off and we said our goodbyes. We felt much better about the situation when we left than when we arrived. We were a little concerned at first because the house was so dirty, plus there didn't seem to be a lot of white people in the neighborhood where their house is. It's not a 'bad' neighborhood though, and after helping them get settled a little I think it will be a nice place. I'm sure there will be a period of adjustment - they are used to being around a lot of friends all the time - but it will probably be good for them to have some alone time together, and I imagine before long they will have a whole new group of friends.

So... Jane and I flew out of Atlanta around 10 am Saturday. I actually like the Atlanta airport - now that I am familiar with the 'plain train.' It was a smallish plain, and the stewardess actually stopped me and had me show the pilots my t-shirt. I wore my Bob Ross shirt that says, "No mistakes - just happy accidents." We had to fly into Chicago O'Hare, and had a three hour layover there. We got lunch and just hung around - and only had one gate change - and finally flew out of there back to Fort Wayne. Carrie and Anna picked us up around 4 pm. They were all fairly good flights but I will be glad when we can get direct flights from FW to Atlanta. Then it will only be a 2-hour trip.

We were a little tired Saturday night and Sunday morning. I'm glad we came back on Saturday so I could have a day to recoup before starting work again today (Jane has Monday off this week). Now it's back to the ol' grind. I am really glad we were able to help move the kids down there. Crosby and I even bonded a little. I look forward to making a few trips down south over the next few years. It should be quite an adventure. Here are a few random pics...