Moving the Shelf Unit to the House

Well, it's kind of funny to me that for a good portion of the day today I was driving someone's pickup truck all over town while our van was getting fixed.  It's ironic, really, because last weekend there was nary a truck to be found in this neighborhood.

Well, actually, that's not exactly true.  We do have lots of friends with trucks, and all of them are extremely generous with them.  However, part of the deterrent to getting my new shelf unit to our garage was just how close it was to our house in the first place.  In fact, I just mapped out the distance on and discovered that the house where I bought the shelf unit is a mere 0.1465 miles from our house.  A stone's throw away, really. 

It might almost have been easier if the shelf unit had been across town.  The distance and weight of the shelf combined certainly would  have justified borrowing a truck and hauling it home.  On the other hand, to borrow a truck to drive something that only cost $20 a distance of  .1465 miles seemed - excessive.  Troublesome.  Unnecessary.

Plus, I knew the shelf was very heavy, so I knew that I would need more than the boys and me to get it home.  I needed help.

The answer came last weekend, when Jason's aunt, uncle, and mother came to visit.  They're all very willing helpers, so I decided that I would enlist their help to get it home.  I pointed the shelf unit out to Uncle Amos on the evening of his arrival, and he began scheming on how we could get it to the house.

His first thought that we could all work together to carry it home.  At first he was even envisioning that he and the boys could take care of it bright and sunny Saturday morning before the US/England World Cup match.  However, the more he looked at it from afar, the heavier it appeared to him.

So that's why the six of us all traipsed over to look at it Saturday evening, kind of like a family parade on our way to...somewhere .1465 miles away.  It took us about three minutes (and one big shelf tip) to figure out that nope, there was no way we could carry that shelf unit down the driveway, much less across a busy street and around the corner to our house.   We all traipsed back home, a family parade in reverse, feeling a little dejected about it all (except for the boys, who seemed quite relieved that they would at least on that occasion have no part in the Family Furniture-Carrying Plan).

Talk was then carried out about borrowing trucks, renting flat bed trailers, or perhaps hijacking some of the gardening trailers that are so pervasive in our well-groomed neighborhood.  There was some talk of placing a sign in our front yard declaring our need for a trailer, or even of Amos imploring for help from the pulpit on Sunday morning.  I began wondering what kind of wheeled items we could hunt and gather to roll the shelf on - several scooters?  A slew of skateboards?  A few office rolling chairs?  A bed of logs that the boys could replace as the shelf rolled along?  (Now there's an idea that wouldn't attract any attention to them in the neighborhood.)

By this point we had about dismissed just borrowing a "regular" pick up due to the size of the shelf unit.  It's about six feet by six feet, so would either hang out the back of a truck bed, or have to be lifted up to sit on top on the sides of the truck.  Even with the six members of the Locke/Allen Family Parade, I didn't think we could manage that.

By Sunday morning, we had come down to the plan of a)borrowing one of our friend's pickup trucks with a tow ball, and b)borrowing the flatbed trailer that sits in our church parking lot.  It used to be an enclosed, u haul-type trailer, but unfortunately it was stolen and cruelly stripped of all its metal parts.  A few weeks later it was returned to us by the police, and now it sits quite naked and metal-less in the church parking lot.

Unfortunately, on Sunday we discovered that it is licence plate-less, as well.   And since I didn't feel right about using an illegal trailer, and because our regular friends didn't have their trucks with tow balls on Sunday morning...we had to move on from that plan.

It was at this point that I began calling the shelf unit the "Furniture Albatross", periodically and without provocation wailing aloud, "It's just .1465 miles away, people!  How hard can it be?!!!"

To make a long story short, we ended up borrowing two of those flat furniture dolly things from the church building and decided to just roll it on home.  It is unfortunate that the boys were busy with other things that afternoon, as they could not participate in slowly rolling a huge, unwieldy shelf unit on wheels across a very wide and busy street and through our neighborhood.  At least they could have been around to take pictures of the event, as I'm sure it will be a much-referred-to family bonding moment for all those involved.

In the end, it rolled over quite easily.  We did have to stop for a lot of dolly adjustments, but that just added to the fun on a hot Sunday afternoon, and also extended the neighbor's viewing pleasure, I'm sure. 

And now it sits in its new place in the garage.  It's waiting for some sanding, perhaps a coat or two of red paint, and a hard, hard shove into its new home against the wall.

But first I have to unscrew the five-feet long garage cabinets from the wall and then pry them off with a crow bar so the shelf unit will fit where I want to go.

Hmmm....I wonder who can help me with that fun job...

Bob  – (16 June 2010 at 11:29)  

Balloons. Like in Up. You could have inflated a bazillion balloons and floated it home. :)

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