Just an FYI. I have re-numbered all of my Before I Tripped Over a Stone, Fridays, posts. So if you are interested, they are now numbered! Feel free to search them out! (You can start the linked series here.) (OR read the previous Friday post here.)
We are going to hit fast forward a bit … two years, to 1996. (I did graduate college in 1994.) So I am living with my roommate, Amy, in Minneapolis, Minnesota. I met Amy while we were both in college.
I am working as a counselor in a mental health group home for those who are challenged. I love my residents, and we do the things that make them happy. We go for rides in the van and get ice cream! We go to movies, to the arboretum, and the circus. We have cook-outs and go shopping. It was a nice way to earn a living.
The downside is that these residents are adults and tend to be very strong. They tantrum like two-year-olds and that is never fun. In fact, I received a concussion, a black eye, and I broke my toe… OK! The toe thing I did on my own by kicking a soccer ball while wearing sandals. It was Doc Martens from then on out, even in the summer! It was my second concussion and well, a few black eyes later that made me wonder what kind of change I needed?
Amy and I lived in a beautiful old brownstone 4-plex with oak, hardwood floors. That apartment was solid! I mean super sound-proof! Amy tapped danced in the dining room… she was a tap dancing, paralegal! (Not at the same time.) We never had any complaints. We threw awesome football parties and roaring 70’s parties! No one ever complained when we all sang ABBA and The Carpenters at the top of our lungs!
One night as I was lying on the floor, (well, you ask, why was I laying on the floor?) Amy and I were playing a card game and I got up to change the CD we were listening to, and we heard, “POP!…POP!POP!POP!” I had hit the floor after the first ‘pop,’ as did Amy. Gunshots again. I looked over at her and started laughing. I just couldn’t stop! She started laughing too, and I said as soon as we hear sirens lets walk down to the C.C. Club and get a beer. It was nice having a bar within walking distance.
The next evening, it started to rain. Torrential rain!!! It was almost the end of October. While we were sleeping, it froze and then started to snow. We both got to stay home from work. But there was no going anywhere, our cars were frozen to the ground. The ice was about 3 inches thick! The weather people were telling us to not attempt to move frozen cars as you would wreck the transmission (or something to that effect). Too late! Amy had been out there with a blow dryer trying to melt the ice and was rocking her car back and forth! I told her when she came back in what the weather person had said. She was not impressed with my laughter.
Well, what does one do when you can’t do anything? We slipped and slid down to the C.C. Club, once again. Usually, our whole group of friends would meet at our apartment when we had a snowstorm and chip in to buy beer. We had a liquor store that delivered beer to your house, but it was a bit more expensive. They often delivered on a snowmobile in the winter. We opted out. No one could get to our apartment anyway after this freak ice storm we had.
By the time we had each finished our first beer, we had decided we were going to move. We decided where and when. Seattle, Washington. We would be there on July 1st, 1996. That gave us nine months to sell our stuff and save some money. Cheers to us!
We would go! We rented an apartment over the phone, sight unseen. We each packed up what would fit in our cars (Amy had to get a different car…oops!), and sold the rest. We would drive to our new city with no jobs! This was either going to be the best decision we had ever made or the stupidest…