Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

Am I the next Unsinkable Molly Brown?


So the question since last Friday, the day of our move from Ely to Soudan, has been, “Will we ever get Internet service here?” I called my provider, Midco, last Wednesday prior to moving, to make arrangements to switch services to our new location. As you all know, you wait and wait, then talk and talk, trying to accomplish what should be a simple task. They ask your identity with name and pass code, that you better have tattooed on your arm or written down in a reliable spot for quick retrieval. If not, you are in a jam in 2017 America. Well, I didn’t expect to be told my Soudan address, for some reason, was not a serviceable location. My case was handed over to an “upper tier” expert who would send me an email in two to three days, so I was told. That email never arrived. I called Frontier too and was told the same thing about my location being unserviceable. “Oh great, we bought a house that we can’t get Internet service at.” “But it’s by the post office, and the city clerk, how can this be?” I pleaded! Then I got into my intense, very focused, frustration-born and spurred-into-action mode…..after talking to others who told me there IS Internet service by both companies in Soudan. Our supremely knowledgeable clerk in Soudan gave me the name of the local Midco technician, so on Saturday morning I tossed on assorted clothes, jumped in my Jeep and went driving up and down the streets of town stalking the Midco tech. It wasn’t a long pursuit and I was thrilled to spot his truck, then jumped out and went up on his deck and knocked on his door. He answered, almost as disheveled as I, then looked at me like I was nuts with my wild hair, and tensed brow, as I explained my situation. He verified Soudan had coverage, which was all I needed. I had his name and confirmation.

So as the weekend rolled into this past Monday, I called Midco again, telling them they really do service Soudan, and boasting the name of their local tech. Then the universe shone on me that glorious moment, providing a Midco call center agent, a female who knew her stuff. Well, she soon had it all figured out! I sighed deeply, glad I’d be able to use a computer again.

So we will get Internet this Friday…..But it grinds me I had to stalk a man to get it done for crying out loud. “A gal’s gotta do what a gal’s gotta do!”

It’s better than great to be getting the mess all in working order here at the new house, because the move was brutal! I’d been at St. Mary’s Hospital the Friday prior for a few final tests to rule out cancer and such in my liver and pancreas. All normal test results, and I was glad my older brother came north from Missouri to be with sis and Bill, in the event the doc “gave me the long face.” In a couple days I was back to packing.

Now in my tranquil, post-move-in state, I actually was curious and went online to see if they make computer software for folks planning to move and discovered they do. Well, I should have bought some. You need help, you really do…unless you’ve done it recently or can fit all your stuff in a few Jeep loads. Face it, moving is a detailed mess, like planning a spoiled daughter’s wedding! I figured I’d started early, but with health issues it got to push, shove and panic. We also closed on two houses on the same day which largely complicates matters.

I myself did start packing stuff in boxes when the house sold eight days after it was listed, and I was persistent, but in my opinion, my other half earned a low grade on his packing progress report. I wondered repeatedly if the process of packing, for men, involves sitting in their man caves mesmerized by sports, admiring the tools on the wall and proudly envisioning them hanging in the new location without actually packing them? This must be the deal because the bulk of Bill’s man cave relics didn’t end up in boxes until the ink was drying on our signatures after closing. I recently saw a cartoon of a man sunk deep into a chair watching TV and the caption was, “I should be packing but Netflix won’t quit automatically playing the next episode!” See how it is? We will be all the wiser if we should ever move again.

I was grateful for the moving company we hired. The two guys were young and very durable, arriving at 8 a.m. and going non- stop until 5 p.m. Bill and I helped haul things to the moving truck but I realized right off that I was too slow and getting in the way, so I did my own thing. There was still the lick-and-a-promise cleaning left to do once the rooms were empty.

So at the end of the moving marathon day I was unsure how I could be functioning yet somehow I was. I’d been scarcely eating (thirty pounds lost to date), in order to keep peace with my unhappy gallbladder, better ensuring I’d get the move finished. Husband Bill had left to go to work and my kids blasted off, but unsinkable Molly Brown a.k.a. Ms. Scarlet was there until the bitter end. Like patiently waiting in a hot auditorium for a junior high band concert to end, this too finally drew to a close.

So, with my red Jeep jammed full, I watched the movers leave on their second trip. I was done too, no need to walk back through and say goodbye, the hell with it. The new owners were chomping at the bit to move in. My good memories are in the heart and head. I tossed aside the bad, then gently boarded my three cats on top of the load, offering loving kitty talk as we rode out of Ely. They all did well. When we got to the Soudan house it was full of all our things so I quickly got kitty dishes ready for their welcome, then carried each one in and showed them where food and water were. They all took note, then promptly disappeared for a few hours. They do it their own way, in their time.

Moving does shift your sense of need and you more easily make do and see humor in the chaos. Bill asked me one morning if I’d located the hair conditioner yet? I said I hadn’t but I had found some shampoo, thus elevating myself from the previous day where I just rubbed a bar of soap on my head, rinsed, then rubbed a bit of mineral oil through for easing the tangles. I was just grateful to be clean and feel my physical and emotional core relaxing.

I had labeled most of the boxes, but abandoned using that moving tip as moving day was upon us. I thought it very unusual to feel so exhausted the day after the move. Must be my body telling me to take it easy. I kept emptying boxes, then resting and napping here and there. I feel it’s important to keep after these boxes though, not get lazy and allow the malaise of postponement to drift in, until it’s autumn and boxes are still stacked in corners, and that conditioner Bill was looking for, along with my aluminum foil and Fitbit scale, are still unaccounted for.

My goal is to finish unpacking in the next two weeks, then I head back to St. Mary’s to get the gallbladder snipped out. I will ease back a bit, then plan to start painting the house exterior! We have fall plans of building a wrap-around covered porch on the south-west corner. It will be our first building project together and I’m excited to measure and saw boards, and envision myself on the custom porch swing Bill is making me. It will face south where we can see the tree tops of Embarrass in the distance from our hillside home, just below the Soudan mine, while sipping coffee and eating apple pie with ice cream.

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