is the first in at three part series chronicling the relocation of my
family from a small town in North East South Dakota to Las Vegas. Due to
the surrounding circumstances, what I've written is intensely personal
and often emotional.
Thank you for reading and please, as always, leave copious feedback.
Other things of note about the move itself:
moving truck overheated twice. The first time was just West of Denver
in the mountains. The second was in the mountains again, this time in
Southern Utah. Both times it was a matter of pulling over for 20 minutes
to let it cool. The stop in Utah was actually pretty amazing. I was a
bit ahead of our caravan so I got out and wandered a few hundred feet to
the top of a deep gorge. It was beautiful, one of Mother Nature's finer
of Mother Nature, the drive from Denver to Vegas was spectacular. If
you ever have a long weekend to blow and live in the area, you owe it to
yourself to make the trip. I can't tell you enough how beautiful of a
drive it is.
the descent of the aforementioned mountains in Utah, we had a couple
events. The first was some really strange weather. It went from 85
degrees to 45 in about 15 minutes. The change brought sleet and hail.
also had our only gas incident of the trip around this time. I had 3/4
of a tank when we set out in the morning. Generally speaking, that
should have been good for about 300 miles or so. Then we hit mountains
and went about 200 miles between gas stations. The last 20 miles I kept
it at about 40mph to conserve fuel, even shifting into neutral and
coasting down any slopes. When we pulled in to a gas station, I took a
pic of my gas gauge. Filling up took almost exactly 1/4 gallon under my
dog's ears wouldn't pop. This lead to her yelping and howling as we
climbed and descended. To comfort her I put her in the front seat of my
truck so she could snuggle up. Once there, she sat on my lap, her head
pressed into my chest so firmly that it felt like I was breathing while
submerged in wet cement. 60 pound dogs do not belong on your lap in a
car, or anywhere else for that matter.
-I ate a lot of Apple-O's.
We finally pulled into Vegas on Sunday night at about 8pm. Coming over a hill to see the city was a watershed moment.
The following morning, Monday the 30th,
we got signed onto our lease and started unloading the truck. Two
friends, Joe Coplan (asufan23) and Jesse Knox (knox828), come over to
help. Joe found a box of rubber gloves and a plastic princess crown. He
looked adorable before having to jet a bit early. At least he plugged
one of our toilets as a parting gift...
stuck around for the duration - he was the real hero of the day.
Without his help I'd still be unloading. We ended the festivities by
celebrating at a Chinese all-you-can-eat called Jumbo Buffet. The place
was filthy, but the food was average (and cheap).
my parents set to go home on Thursday, and Amber starting her new job, I
spent the next two days leading the effort to unpack and settle in.
This was interrupted by learning we messed up and booked flights for my
parents on Wednesday. It was very upsetting, especially considering we
had plans for them to see the touristy side of Vegas that night (I love
playing tour guide). In spite of the bad news, we had an awesome lunch
at a sushi place across the street (Sushi Yamaguchi....so good) and sent
them on their way.
during the move both of our DVR's got messed up. The Direct TV
installer had new ones mailed to us. Then there was an issue getting
them set up - apparently there is an issue with some line in our
building which I've found out prevents us from having both Cox and
Direct TV. So now I need anew ISP. In all of this, we lost our DVR
contents, including multiple season finales. Not a world ender, but yet
another annoyance in this whole process. We still don't have it all
fixed. Speaking of which, I need to make a quick call.
Thursday the 2nd was our 10th
wedding anniversary. To celebrate, we had dinner at Rosemary's
Restaurant on West Sahara.The food was quite good and the service was
out of this world. From there we went to a Le Reve at Wynn. It was one
of the best things I'd ever had the pleasure of attending. We were both
blown away for the entirety of the 80 minute show. I'd see it again in a
Monday I kissed Amber goodbye and hitched a 7am flight back to
Aberdeen. I got in around 5pm, and was beyond happy to see my daughter
was waiting in the terminal. After nine days without her, especially
with all the mental turmoil I'd gone through, it was one of the best
moments of my life.
week was spent back and forth between my parents and my
brother-in-law's house. Ava had two dance recitals, which were fun but
stressful experiences. While I am not good at this particular aspect of
being a parent - I don't do hair and makeup - it all went off without a
Thursday we said our goodbyes to our family. Friday we awoke very early
for our flight home. Ava had never flown before and was super excited.
As is typical, we sat on the runway for what seemed like an eternity (I
wanted to go home, Ava wanted to fly). Aside from that things went
great. She was a trooper, even eliciting compliments from multiple
passengers for her behavior.I beamed.
story ends, for now, with me choking back tears as Amber and Ava were
reunited after 14 days of being apart. I am honestly not sure where this
adventure will lead from here. I do know that no matter what happens,
even if we move back at the end of our lease, I will never consider any
of this a failure. We did something so many others we know would never
attempt. I am proud of that fact, even If I am still undecided as to the
wisdom of it.