The time has come for me to move my things out of storage. This stuff constitutes all of my worldly possession. It fits into a five by ten locker. It has sat there since I placed all of my things there before leaving to the U.K. Over time I have consistently shed material possessions. Out of necessity I have subsided on the bare minimum. It’s a strange kind of aesthetic although not as bare as it could have been.
The thing about it is that you become a lot more selective about the things that you buy. I examine things a lot more. That’s why in some way I prefer to go to the shop and try the thing. If I like it I’m likely to buy it. I’ve avoided stores for that reason. I’ve managed to spend money in other ways though.
Chrl’s father was meeting me in the morning at the storage facility. The way I had it planned was that dad and I would get there and they would meet for the first time. The trouble is that I forgot the key to the unit in my sisters glove compartment. It was an unwieldy letter size package and the bag was in the back where I put it when she picked me up yesterday. I was up at an ungodly four in the morning. I’m wide awake and further rest is not possible. It’s just tossing and turning. I faffed with wrapping presents and all of a sudden realized it was time. I quickly dressed and loaded all the things I needed to take into the van. Hmm it wasn’t as much as I thought.
Dad was taking his time and I was ready to go. I was hungry and wanted a coffee for the supervision that I would have to perform as my stuff got loaded. He was going to meet me there with mom. She was going to take one of the vans. My sister was going to meet me there as well. It was a lot of timing a lot of moving variables that needed to be in synch for all of this to work. The stress level was higher than the usual sedate.
I haven’t driven in a long time and the storage locker was on a certain exit that I missed. I had to drive to the next one and turn around but then where to get coffee? I drove in circles and pulled U-ees a few times. Eventually I ended up at a local conglomerate coffee chain outpost at the local commercial area. I still made it there early and waited impatiently for all of this to finally begin.
Chrl’s father showed up first. I motioned him to park beside me and to get into my van. We chatted for a bit and then the big van showed up. I got a run through about all of the things that were going to happen. Each item was to be tagged by the rough looking older guy who works all the time. The two young quebecers were going to load all of it onto the van.
It was a motley crew of individuals. My sis was an it late with the keys and I explained that to the old guy. She was there two minutes after I finished explaining he situation. The crew and I went upstairs after I parked the van close to theirs. Chrl’s dad parked beside me. I opened the unit after getting lost in the vast space. Each unit similar to each other and there is no roadmap once you get lost. The guys looked on in amazement at all the boxes inside. The five by ten locker was filled to the brim with boxes and other household material.
The guys were going to remove each piece and each box and label it with a sticker. These boxes were then taken downstairs and loaded onto the lorrie for transport. They will then be transferred again on their way to Saskatoon. It’s that extra transfer that worries me but most of the things that we have are boxed facilitating this process. I wasn’t really needed for this process nor the loading of the material. Once back outside I sent my mom and dad home as well as my sister and Chrl’s dad. We unloaded the things from the back of Chrl’s dads truck and as he was the last one there we chatted for a bit. There is no need for everyone to be there in the freezing cold. Once they all left I went into the office and waited for the next load to come downstairs from the locker. I got so bored that I helped the guy downstairs load the truck by walking boxes up to him to stack. The exertion increased my heart rate generating heat making being out here tolerable. I should have maybe worn another layer. This process took approximately two hours so it wasn’t that bad. We were actually done a lot quicker than expected.
Once we went over the paperwork we were both on our way to our next destinations. On my way back I stopped in for another coffee and snack and then continued on to the bank and liquor store. I just wanted one bottle for a few Christmas drinks. What’s next? My folks were busy with their tasks. Mom out chatting with some friends and dad puttering around the house. I was soon napping. Since I get up so early due to my jet lag once late afternoon comes I’m out. Later on in the afternoon my folks went to church so I was left alone. This quiet time allowed me to continue writing in order to catch up to all that has been going on. Tomorrow I’ll be going to the island to visit my brother and his wife and their little one.
When my folks came back my dad asked me to help him with making sauerkraut. He whinged about the store bought kind that they have been eating. Their last stock finished so they were forced to resort to it. They enjoy eating it and use it to make a few dishes besides using it as a side dish. My dad was faffing with the blades that he used to cut the cabbage up into thin slices. When he asked me to help him I was feeling pretty tired. My motivation to help was low.
The best thing to do is to is just get it done. I was told to wash and scrub my feet. This is getting better and better. Half asleep and in a daze I dutifully scrubbed my feet in preparation for my task. There were maybe 30-40 heads of cabbage that had to be stomped. My dad already made a mince out of it. He had trouble adjusting the blades at the beginning but eventually got it right. There were a few tubs of the stringy cabbage left. My task was to stomp it inside this tall slender barrel.
“I don’t know if I’m gonna fit inside of it dad.”
“If you get stuck we will pull you out.” He responded laughing at the prospect. I climbed up a small ladder and lowered myself into it. It’s close but I won’t be stuck inside. The problem is how are we going to keep adding more layers? How am I going to climb out? This barrel is at my waist.
We carefully added some special salt to the cabbage that was already there at the bottom and I just had to walk and step. I was listening to music on my headphones stopping to the rhythm of the track. My dad isn’t a fan of my modern tastes so this way I don’t annoy him with it. He poured me a big shot of one of his concoctions and that warmed me up a bit as did the movement. As I stomped on the cabbage the salt drew water from the cabbage into the exterior. This process is necessary for the proper fermentation of the cabbage into sauerkraut. The stuff is healthy and an acquired taste but when made right it tastes great. The fermentation will take a few months. This is one of those traditions that will be carried on I hope once we have the space.
I didn’t think I would have to do so much today but now that it’s done it’s done and I can move on to the rest of the things on my itinerary.