Sunday, July 29, 2012

PODS - How Do They Work?

I am not even being prideful here when I say that my PODS container was the hottest thing on the block. Neighbors came out to watch it being hauled away.


People stopped on the street to ask me about how they worked, what they did with them, if they were waterproof, etc. I myself didn't see the container get delivered and was perplexed as to how you get a giant glorified tupperware container off the ground and onto the back of a truck without just... I don't know, dragging it up there? Well, here's how it's done.

Don't forget to pack it full of your shiz.


Lock it up with your own lock. The truck will come and back up to it.


An At-At Walker sort of thing that's remote controlled by the driver will pick itself up and settle itself over the container.


It crouches, so to speak, to get chained to the PODS.



Then you pretty much reverse it to where the remote controlled contraption has lifted it up and is carrying the container over onto the truck bed. It sets it down, the contraption's legs/wheels come up, and it's pretty much on its way.


Cool,  huh? I'm not gonna lie, PODS are kind of expensive. But then, moving's very expensive, not only in initial costs but in very sneaky ways, too. This happened to be the best way for me to move: I could take my time and pack it up, because you can negotiate drop off and pick-up dates, and with the cost, you're basically 'renting' it for a month. Meaning, I have some time to find an apartment, aka an address to ultimately deliver to. It will stay in storage until I summon it. As a bonus, if I had to get into it before I moved into a new place, I could call ahead and get it brought out to the front of their storage facility so I could dig through it.

I would definitely rate this as the second best way to move, the first being to pile all of your things in the middle of the street and light them on fire before turning your back and walking away. But when that's not really an option, this is a pretty good way to move all of your terrible worldly possessions.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Arrived in Connecticut

As the POD with most of my belongings was pulling away from the house, I thought to myself, "Wow, I'm really moving to Connecticut."

On the drive up I thought to myself, "Wow, I'm moving to a place I've visited once for less than a day."

We live in strange times.

Saturday was spent frantically packing, and today was spent driving around 12 hrs solo (that's 13.5 hrs moving time, mind you) with a yowl-y cat and a yellow fish (and all sorts of terrible material possessions) up to Danbury, where I'll be living temporarily in the extended-stay Marriot while I look for a place to live. Snips has had a rough couple of days, but he seems to understand that it's over for the time being, and is nearly as chill as ever tonight.

The Panther Rests

That, or he's exhausted himself. Perhaps.

Tomorrow I explore the town and possibly look at some apartments, and on Tuesday I go in for my first day of work! I'll be sure to take a picture of my Big First Day outfit :)

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Luckiest Girl Alive

You know what would be great? If I moved from WI to NC in August of one year, then moved houses that following May and painted all sorts of rooms, then packed everything up again and moved to CT in July of the following year, just a month shy of living in NC for a whole year. Oh wait! It's real! It's happening! What a dream come true.

Ok, so as you might guess, I'm busy packing and generally panicking about move details, and I'm gonna have to catch you later, blog.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Linville Gorge Wilderness

I had a rare weekend day off this past Saturday, so Jon and I struck out on a mini adventure. Jon moved here a little over a year ago, and of course I haven't even gotten a year under my belt, so there's still so much to explore (and oohhh my goooosh, I am going to miss that like crazy.) Being as it was deathly hot, we decided we needed to find a swimming hole. We wanted a little bit of a hike, so it would be quieter than the more accessible areas. Jon did a little research and landed on a particular place in the Linville Gorge Wilderness, which is described as the Grand Canyon of North Carolina.


Checking Directions

I would be remiss not to mention that the directions that Jon found online to this swimmin' hole pretty much made it all possible. Ok, maybe that's being dramatic, but it helped to have someone else make the wrong turns we would have made, and then blog about it to help future suckers such as ourselves. We saved a lot of time by knowing the ins and outs of the hike.

Spence Ridge, Linville Gorge

We found the swimmin' hole that the aforementioned blogger had written about - TA-DA! - but decided to keep on to find a more private place.


After a little hiking, and then a little backtracking, we arrived at our very own private pool, complete with extremely nibble-y fish.

Swimmin' Hole

I hate to say it, but it is 'beautiful'. I wish I were more eloquent, so I could properly describe it. Seeing all the huge rocks jumbled in the stream, with the forest rising on either side makes you feel like you're a plastic miniature person in someone's model of The Wilderness. I feel like in the Midwest there's a lot of wide open space, and here in the Asheville area, I sometimes feel hemmed in by the hills and the vegetation when I'm out in the woods. Not uncomfortable, but 'snug', let's say. At most of the places I've been, you can either see a dense forest right in front of you, or view the mountains in the distance (as with an overlook). On this particular stream, it seemed like the best of both worlds. I was in the forest, but I could step back far enough to appreciate the scale of everything.

If my description fails, perhaps my mediocre photo will triumph?

Downstream of the Swimmin' Hole

To reiterate, this is an amazing place. Here, have another photo of this river.

Spence Ridge, Linville Gorge

After swimming for a while with the friendly fishes, it was time to dry off and head on out before we got caught in the dark.

Straight Loungin'

Fact: Dustiest Road Ever.

Antique Car

On the drive back to Asheville, we took the Blue Ridge Parkway and stopped here and there to check things out.

Blue Ridge Parkway Sunset

This place is flippin' majestic, darn it.

Blue Ridge Parkway Sunset

Why does it seem to be getting better at better the closer I get to leaving?

Friday, July 6, 2012

Asheville Mission #2

Before moving to my new job in Connecticut, there are some things I've missed that I want to experience (or maybe just feel I should) before I move from Asheville and the South in general.

Objective: View an Asheville cultural activity.

So I experienced a drum circle. I'm not sure if this counts, because I did not let the spirit move me and merely observed, but we had places to be.

Drum Circle

For bonus points, I'm wearing a Patagonia top, which is simultaneously the uniform and the formal wear of Asheville.

Drum Circle

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Asheville Mission #1

Before moving to my new job in Connecticut, there are some things I've missed that I want to experience (or maybe just feel I should) before I move from Asheville and the South in general.

Do an Asheville alley cat. (Usually not based on speed. Props given for costumes).

Poker Alleycat

I'm not sure to deduct or add points for the fact that 4/5ths of the way through this alley cat, Jon and I decided to go and get dinner instead of finishing the ride. It was a poker ride, where you draw a card at each stop and compete for the best hand at the end. Ours were dismal, and we decided to go to Early Girl and get some breakfast for dinner there.

Jon unlocking after Early Girl

Suck it, poker ride.

Southern Mission #1

Before moving to my new job in Connecticut, there are some things I've missed that I want to experience (or maybe just feel I should) before I move from Asheville and the South in general.

Have some Cheerwine, which as far as I can tell is the Dr. Pepper of the South?


A very enjoyable and refreshing mission.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Climbing Adventure

So, this happened a number of weeks ago: I went climbing, and it was pretty legit. We did four pitches at The Nose at Looking Glass for a total of about 600 ft. Robb led and placed gear and I seconded and swept the route. Basically that means Robb did all the work of finding the route, and that I was on top-rope the whole time, which is less risk, and easier, than what Robb was doing. But it was still definitely difficult enough for me. A lot of the time it felt like I was supposed to be able to stick to smooth rock and climb right on up there. I mean, how many hand holds can you spot on this?

The Nose at Looking Glass

Here, I believe I'm hanging out on a ledge at the top of the first pitch.

The Nose at Looking Glass

Robb took this picture for scale.

The Nose at Looking Glass

Here's a close-up of doing a push/pull with either hand, which helps you stick your feet to the rock when there's not much of a foothold to be found.

The Nose at Looking Glass

Here I am, very happy to be on the top at last. While climbing was never strictly 'frightening', it was nerve wracking. I think we were on the rock for four hours, and just about every minute of that was spent emotionally and physically ON. The few moments I did have to rest on the odd ledge or two, I nearly fell asleep in a shut-down mode. But suffering through the climb and getting to the top sounded a lot better than giving up and turning around.

This was the payoff:

The top of The Nose at Looking Glass

On an interesting note, shortly after I moved here last year in the fall, I hiked to the top of Looking Glass to almost the same exact spot.


Blog post about it here.

Change is Afoot

As some of you may have seen on Facebook, I recently accepted a position at Cycling Sports Group, aka the collection of Schwinn, Mongoose, GT, Sugoi and Cannondale. The story is this:

On June 11, CSG's recruitment company contacted me after they found my online portfolio. A few days later I had a short phone interview with the recruitment company, and was then set up with a morning phone interview with the Graphic Design Manager of Cannondale and GT. That afternoon I got a call asking me to fly up and interview in person. Well, ok!

On the 20th, a mere 9 days after the initial phone call (for those counting along), I was in Bethel, Connecticut, visiting the office and slaying interviews :) A few days later I was offered a position that was too good to pass up - I'll be doing On-Product graphics for Cannondale mountain bikes.

As you might guess, this means I'll be moving to Connecticut soon. Very soon! I'm striking out for the north on Sunday, June 22nd. Until then, I'll be fitting in all the Asheville-type things that I haven't gotten to do yet, and blogging them, of course!