End of Storage Note:
Evacuation
11 March 2019

Today, we marked an epoch by closing our outstanding account with Manhattan Mini Storage, and taking possession of the items that we had parked in a small room at their uptown-most facility. I gather that this facility was not the success that MMS’s other, more convenient locations have been, because Edison, the corporate owner, decided to convert the space to use as offices. Last fall, I was notified that my stuff, if I did not make other arrangements prior to a certain date, would be moved to “another location” — presumably at another (higher) rent. Then my foot went on the fritz, and I gave the matter no thought until a few weeks ago, when I was advised that the certain date had been postponed. By now, I was feeling well enough to confer with Ray Soleil, who, as usual, did all the work. He arranged for Man with a Van to pick our things up this morning. Forbidden by company policy to ride with the van, Ray managed to get to the apartment right behind it. While I made my way downstairs, Ray saw to it that the van was promptly emptied and driven away. He had his reasons.

The doorman was not going to allow us to cart my belongings through the lobby; we would have to go round to the service entrance on 87th Street. This very bad news, for which I had made no preparations, was not altogether a surprise, but I had hoped that eight boxes (five of books), a patio chair, two garment racks of clothes, and four paintings might squeak by the prohibition of moving furniture into the building via the front door. (People take furniture out that way all the time, although just a piece or two at a time.) I wailed, nicely, that I had been living in the building for nearly forty years, for most of which time such regulations had enforced rather lightly. And so on. Suddenly, my fairy godmother — a lovely woman from the management office who had been very helpful with our bed-delivery problems last fall — appeared and announced that there was no problem. Now the doorman affably held open the door while Ray rolled things in. I don’t know how the lady from the management office got wind of the situation, but I knew better than to ask.

Until Ray reported back from an exploratory mission last week, I thought that there would be at least twice as many boxes of books. That there were only five was very happy news. Well, six, but this sixth box was full of novels by Anthony Trollope, including a number of titles, such as The Vicar of Bullhampton, that I had never read. (There was also the endless Marion Fay, which may well have been the book that stifled my interest in Trollope, even if it was an aborted re-reading of John Caldigate that soured my taste for Trollope.) I thought that I had a plan for the Trollopes, but when confronted with the actual books, I came to a very different decision, quickly finding shelf space for the clothbound Barsetshire and Palliser novels, setting aside five or six other books to keep, and bagging all the rest for charity.

The disposition of the Last of Storage will take more than a week, but I hope to deal with everything but the clothes in the next couple of days, and that’s what I’ll be writing about this week.

More anon.

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