What the F*** is This And Why is it in My Basement?

So, packout is now 70 days away. ←  Not that anyone is counting.

We had a sneak preview this morning. My daughter was allowed 100 pounds of air freight back to the States, for some reason. (I give up on figuring these things out, I just take them when I can get them.) Anyway, a guy came and packed up 100 pounds of her stuff and made it disappear—as in I will never have to move it again! So I’m happy.

Before that, I put on my miner’s helmet* and dug into our dank, dusty, 19th century basement storage unit to see what I could sneak into her shipment what might belong to her. It’s the second time this year I have done it: the first excursion resulted in an entire carload of donations.

I didn’t make a list, but as I recall, Level One Crap included:

  • A bunch of 110v appliances and electronics that never should have come to post and would have been totally outdated or rusty by the time we get back to the States (a cordless home phone system from 2004, computer speakers from the 1990s, various cell phones, and so on…)
  • Several pairs of roller blades that hadn’t been worn in at least three years. Including my husband’s blades, with no brakes, which I am pretty sure is stupid illegal when you are over 50 years old. And the kids’ blades which were like, five sizes ago.
  • Two plastic University of Virginia lawn flamingos. Gag gifts are much more fun when you don’t have to move them every two or three years. And you have a lawn.

Today’s excavation into Level 2 Crap resulted in:

  • A composter. We live in an apartment. This is my fault–it seemed like a good idea at the time. I go a little crunchy sometimes, I can’t help it. It’s going.
  • A huge stack of boxes for various appliances. I share responsibility for this, but now when I see how filthy they are, they clearly have to go.
  • Yet more crappy old 110v appliances. Gone.
  • Several pizza pans and other cookware items that are way too big for the EZ Bake European ovens that I will be cursed with for the next several years.
  • Four very dusty bikes, four very dusty helmets, a very dusty heavy-duty car bike rack, and various other accessories that we spent a mint on about six years ago and haven’t ridden since we got to Vienna. Despite living about two blocks from a major bike path. (Quote from my son when I asked if I could sell his bike: “I have a bike?”) I may be slow, but I am not completely stupid: we are apparently not Bike People. Or at least not Bike Maintenance People. I have put them all up for sale, strictly as-is, at fire sale prices.
  • Slipcovers that I paid too much for and don’t fit my ugly Drexel furniture.
  • A bowling ball. Which has lived on three continents so far. Which my husband will not let me donate.
  • Several very dusty suitcases–we really have to find a better solution for storing these. Yuck.
  • A massive allergy attack from all the dust. Oh wait, that happens every time.

Basically, I look at everything now and consider: do I want to unpack this in Warsaw? And, the answer is usually NO. So over it. Many, many things have left our house over the last few months, from books, to craft supplies, and now curiosities from the deepest, darkest depths of the basement.

I am having some kind of phase here. Whether it is due to one move too many, or an impending empty nest, or just plain biology, I don’t know. And I don’t really care. Must. Purge.

I don’t know why we buy what we buy, or keep what we keep. But at this point, I am happy to let someone else have it and use it, since I clearly am not!

My goal for the next apartment is not to put anything in the basement. OK, maybe a few gardening supplies which are pretty dirty anyway. But that’s IT.


*just kidding, but it would have been handy.


  1. For me it is not so much do I want to unpack this at my next post, but now that we have bought what will be our little (emphasis on little) retirement home the question has changed to do I have a place to put this at our forever house. At 1200 square feet a lot of things are going to have to go.


    • Our retirement home (or at least empty-nester home) is 1,450 square feet with no basement, no garage, and no attic to speak of. So, I hear you!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.