Friday, April 11, 2008

Westward Ho

We had been living in a townhouse in Maryland for ten years. We wanted more room and a bigger yard for the dogs, so we started looking at houses. We hadn't found the right one yet, when the phone rang one afternoon and Rob received a very nice job offer. He interviewed, liked the people and we decided to take it and move. To Missouri!!. I had sworn I would never live in tornado alley and here I was moving to it's hub. The new Company gave us three days to find a house. Armed with a number of selections from the internet, we met our new realtor and started looking at houses in

The first day we didn't find anything we could agree on. The second day we found one that was a compromise. It wasn't really what either of us wanted, but it would do. We went to lunch to write up an offer, but during lunch I saw a picture of a house for sale nearby and we decided to see it before making an offer on the other one.

The minute I walked in the front door I was in love with the house and Rob quickly indicated that he felt the same way. It had large rooms, high ceilings, four levels, a porch with a wrap around deck and a very big yard for the dogs. It was on a private street and surrounded by woods and farm land. The only thing missing was a fireplace. We made an offer and it was accepted. We flew back to Maryland to start packing.

We left Maryland on January 2. We didn't know that we were driving into a major snow and ice storm. The Isuzu Trooper was loaded with the three dogs, six birds and a giant 25 year old Christmas cactus. Of course, the Trooper decided to die a slow death. We were afraid to turn the engine off, it might not start up again. Needless to say it made us both a bit tense. The first night we found a small motel that accepted pets and we all piled in to sleep.

In the morning the Trooper started up, but wouldn't go over 50 mph. The second night the storm was really bad. We saw lots of vehicles off the road. We tried not to think about our moving van somewhere on this same road. The snow was turning to ice and roads were closing down around us. Finally we had to stop, but there was only one hotel in the town left with a vacancy and they didn't take pets. We took the room. Rob drove the Trooper around to the back of the motel and I went in the room and opened the window. He handed the dogs, birds and plant to me through the window. We turned Animal Planet up loud on the TV and spent the night. Good thing the dogs had good bladders. In the morning I handed the pets back out the window and off we went.

Finally we arrived at the new house. Only one problem, the sellers had not moved out. There they were in the kitchen. We were cold, tired, hungry and worried about our moving van. We took the animals downstairs to what would become our office, closed them in and told the couple upstairs that we were going out to get something to eat. We said they should be gone when we returned. It was an interesting meal, would they be gone? They were, but it took them a couple more days to move all their stuff out.

The moving van arrived and the two men on it worked for two full days unloading it. The house is on a steep hill and the ice was building up quickly and the truck kept sliding down the hill. Once we had to get a tow truck to pull it back up the hill.

At last spring came and the dogs thought they were living at the park. They had grass, trees and squirrels to chase. What more could a dog want? We planted trees and flowers and my thoughts started turning to getting a puppy. I wasn't sure how Rob would feel about it. He had made it pretty clear that three was our limit.

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