This was written on Tuesday of this week.
Everything is in boxes and every box is labeled (all four sides AND the top!), and aggressively taped. Lots and LOTS of heavy-duty packing tape!! The UHaul was scheduled for this morning. The movers were scheduled as well, to help us load the truck. We gave all of our frozen food to a neighbor last night, and threw everything else away. We also drove my Jeep down to our son, Frank, who is scheduled to drive it up for us in two weeks, during his school break.
We came home, laid down on our mattress on the floor (the bed had been taken apart), and tried to go to sleep. But, I couldn’t. I was too excited! We were FINALLY going to move!!! In just 72 hours, we would be in our new home!!
So, I turned on my phone to scan the news. And, that’s when I read about the panic buying, and resulting gas shortages, mostly in Georgia. You know…where we are moving. Now, I knew about the pipeline debacle already. I’d even said to Brian two days prior, “Good thing it’s not the main news headline! Otherwise people would be panic buying.” Just two days later, it WAS the main headline.
I logged onto Facebook, and saw picture after picture of lines at gas stations, and bags over gas nozzles. I even saw a video of a fist fight by a pump, and pictures of police officers guarding gas stations. Hmmm….
I thought, ‘Well, okay, we’ll just stick to the back roads. Surely the gas stations on the interstate will run out of gas first…’
I texted our daughter. It was after midnight but she called me immediately, saying, “Mom, it’s really bad.” She lives in a very small town in Georgia, and said her husband had driven by 12 gas stations, and finally found one in another town with gas. And, he wasn’t home yet.
So, knowing all of that, we had two choices:
1. Hit the road and, if we couldn’t find gas, we’d stay in a hotel until things get better.
2. Stay here until things got better.
We decided the smartest (and least stressful) move (pun intended) was #2. And, I admit I got almost NO sleep at all last night trying to figure out how this whole mess is going to play out.
So, here we sit with only one vehicle, literally NO groceries, and everything…EVERYTHING packed tight in boxes. I really, Really, REALLY hate to “unpack” a box but we need silverware, plates, cups, etc. I’m going to order about 3 days’ worth of groceries. The townhouse complex here is repaving the parking lots on Monday and Tuesday. If we can’t get out of here before then, we’ll have to do it after. Nobody is allowed in the parking lot during the repaving. That’ll be fun. I guess having only one vehicle during that time will be a blessing.
We are seeing no gas shortages on the west coast of Florida. Our gas comes in by ship. However, if we had hit the road, as soon as we are a few hours north of here, we’d be running on empty with no way to get fuel. That 26′ UHaul sucks a lot of gas. We were also going to be driving the F-150, and towing our small camper.
I never thought something like THIS would happen but, after the past 15 months of Hell, I’m not sure why I’m so surprised.
UPDATE #1: I found the box with the silverware. I needed a knife to cut through the heavy-duty tape to get inside. But, guess where the knives were? Don’t worry. We found a wayward pair of scissors in the tape and Sharpie packing supply box.
UPDATE #2 – Thursday: The pipeline is back online so we’re now planning to leave next Wednesday. The paving will be done at the complex by then and we are hoping the stations will have gas, and that the panic buying will have stopped.
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Angela Hoy lives on a mountain in North Georgia. She is the publisher of WritersWeekly.com, the President and CEO of BookLocker.com and AbuzzPress, and the author of 24 books.
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Angela, I am so sorry! In difficult situations I try to remind myself, and then trust, that everything happens for a reason. Please let us know if you discover the purpose behind all this! I’m certain it will make a good story.
I thought of you a couple of weeks ago when I drove through the North GA mountains to come home. I had an appointment in Dalton that was going to put me through Atlanta around 5 pm so I took the long way around. We do have gas here in SC but it’s spotty. I expected panic buying because the pandemic has already set people up to do that. I don’t think it’ll last all that long, though. I know you’re ready to get a move on! (pun intended, sorry!)
Well, following your “move” has certainly been an interesting read. Lot’s of “I remember the time when…” conversations to have with your grand-kids. I’m so sorry to hear about this latest snag. If not for the hoarders, there would have been enough gas for everyone. It’s scary to think there are so many “Every man for himself and screw everyone else” mentalities in this country. People were actually filling trash bags and plastic storage bins with gas. It makes you wonder what chaos could ensue if there ever really was a long-term gas shortage. My fear is that guns would be blazing. Wishing you a safe journey.
Oh Lord, Angela, I never thought how the pipeline closedown and gas shortage would affect your moving. Surely you will be able to get away by next Wednesday. I’ll keep fingers and toes crossed and add some prayers that you will. Take care and I look forward to hearing that you all are IN your house next week!
I was wondering if you and your family ran into the pipeline mess. I have relatives living in that area, and they said it was a mess and could not find a gas station open. Glad your family is safe. Be safe driving and have wine and cheese when you get to your new home!