"Our Lives in a 10' x 20' Storage Unit"
Well, here we are in Orem, Utah, waiting for our time to enter the Missionary Training Center (MTC) in Provo, Utah, near the Provo Temple on Monday, July 25, 2011. We are excited, yet anxious, about serving a welfare mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We will be staying at the MTC for two week, and then we will be traveling to the Dominican Republic, where we will live for the next 18 months.
On Tuesday evening, we had some wonderful people come to our home in Cheyenne, Wyoming, to help us load the Penske truck, a 26 footer. I had originally signed up for a 16 footer. Once I arrived and checked it out, I quickly surmised that I would never get everything we had in that size of a truck, no matter how I packed it. Fortunately, the Penske people had a 26' truck on the lot. Thank you, Penske!
So we packed what was left after two garage sales and several large sales on Craigslist. I was amazed how fast things go on Craigslist. A four-thumbs up to Craigslist. We probably could have sold our washer and dryer about ten times. When that happens, you have to wonder whether you asked enough money for the pair. Oh well! The pair is sold.
Once we packed the truck, I thought to myself: "I am sure glad that we rented a 26' truck." The concern that arose, however, was whether we were able to stuff all of it into the 10' x 20' storage unit. Our daughters had several people at the storage unit in Provo to help us unload. We did a nice job of strategically placing our entire lives into the 10' x 20'. Of course, we kept out our four suit cases full of missionary gear.
As I shut the door and placed the lock, I breathed a sigh of relief. Everything we own is now housed in a 10' x 20' storage unit in Provo, Utah. Never in my life did I think we could stuff everything in such a space. But we did. I heard one of my daughters comment: "If you haven't used it for a year, you need to get rid of it." I think that is a good plan. I think many of us have become quasi-hoarders in our own right. Take a look around your home and in your basement. You probably have stuff there you haven't even touched for decades.
After driving the 26' Penske diesel truck, I have a new appreciation for long-and short-haul truck drivers. Now, I have driven lots of potato trucks when I was younger, trudging slowly down the row in concert with the potato digger and then lumbering through the field, down the rutted dirt roads to the cellar. But driving a big 26' diesel down I-80, up and down the hills, fighting to keep some semblance of speed, is a task, an arduous task that I do not not want to have to repeat--if ever.
I doff my cap to America's truck drivers who trundle down our freeways and highways. Thank you for your work, your extreme patience, your courage, and your willingness to drive those big rigs so far to deliver all of the things we need to keep America going.
So, we'll be off to the Dominican Republic soon! Stay tuned for comments and pictures about our mission and about the Dominican Republic, fondly called the "DR." I will try to keep you posted with all of the nuances of what a welfare mission is about.