Thursday, January 6, 2011

Free Time, Day Six: productivity.

What a jam-packed, exciting, productive day.

I was the first responder on a couple of choice craigslist postings that I responded to very afterthought-ishly yesterday. And poof! I got dibs on a couple of cool things!

So this morning, somewhere around 9:30, Mr. Fab and I hopped in my son's big truck and drove to Gil's house to pick up a coffee table. Gil lives approximately 8 miles away, which is truly the art of the deal. Proximity.

By the way, Gil and his wife are artists. I was tempted to ask if a few of the pieces that peppered their house were expendable, because their stuff was uncharacteristic for Highlands Ranch. Experimental, with a Folk Art sensibility. But I reeled in my art envy, kept my mouth shut, and we loaded up this square oak coffee table. And then we left, having chalked another item off the inventory list.

Then we figured we'd load up the truck with some stuff that's in my garage before we headed to stake our claim on the storage space.

So we went home, picked up the leather chairs we scored last weekend from Skip and Trish. Then we went straight to Public Storage, and I signed my life away.

At least for a month.

And the Public Storage deal is great. This shiny aluminum 10'x20' space is all mine until February 5, all for the low cost of 45.96.

And that's one of my end games. Keeping the cost down.

If I don't wrap this crazy experiment up in 30 days, I'll have to shell out a huge chunk of ching. What's worth 45.96 for a month of storage space today will cost me $140 a month 30 days from now. Very motivational.

So much more is left to say about the whole Public Storage experience. So much to say about Joe, who was our PS Point Man.

So much more about the surveillance. The security. The locks. The keys. The James Bond-like special codes we now need to learn to access our special, vast, aluminumy quadrant.

But I feel compelled to move the day along. There's so much more to say about today, and I have dinner plans. So I'll continue...

Mr. Fab and I were distracted by a craigslist posting that piqued his interest when it came to the part about the free Macintosh computers that were going to be dragged to the curb.

So we headed back to the very beige Highlands Ranch. Thank God for the GPS on the iphone, what with the circuitous nature of that area. No offense to those who live in Highlands Ranch.

We snagged a totally cool first generation Mac. Very heavy. We have yet to see if it works, but Macs are  almost indestructible. And I thought it was cool when Mr. Fabulous pontificated on the possibility of getting the Mac user-ready for someone else.

After stowing the Mac in the truck, we headed downtown.

Jillian had respected my dibs on her kitchen table and two chairs.

And what a bonanza! We procured this Italian-made, very large oval kitchen/dining room table, as well as two barrel back chairs (not shown), two very cool high stools, and a whole bunch of other very useful items.

Jillian's probably far afield from her computer this evening. Her mom is coming to town to help Jillian move back to Vermont. Jillian's been in Colorado to complete a practicum in her pursuit of a degree in environmental law. She found out, very recently, that this Colorado stint wasn't quite as long as she'd have liked. So Jillian and her mom are heading back East tomorrow.

Not unlike Gil, Jillian has a lot of work to do before she vacates her space.

But Jillian was completely generous, because she's a smarty-pants, and she understands there are bigger fish to fry than to attach herself to this monumental task of moving way way across the country.

She seemed grateful that we were taking these totally great items off her hands. She told us that we were actually helping her. Jillian has a lot on her plate between now and tomorrow, and the last thing she wanted to do was to have to drag the stuff that won't fit into her rented U-Haul to the Goodwill.

So right now, Jillian and her mom are most likely packing her items into a big moving van. And tomorrow they'll be on the road, bound for Vermont.

I think we both did each other a favor.

She provided so much more than the table and chairs to my project. And I hope we lightened her load, just a bit.

So. As I just mentioned, Jillian had more to give than the table and two chairs she'd put up for grabs on craigslist for free yesterday.

This is what we put in the gleaming and what-was-once-almost-vacant storage space, all because of Jillian.

The table and two chairs, as advertised.

Two raised barstools.

A brand new lamp.

Which is resting on a very cool little table.

Which is in front of a highly cool 6-drawer wicker and metal dresser.

Off way to the left is a highly functional and useful and almost new toaster oven.

On the barrel back chair (now shown) is a collection of kitchen items: pans, utensils, a cutting board.

Behind the wicker piece is a disassembled but very nice baker's rack (not shown).

Thank you, Jillian.

Because your items are now safely at the ready for the next step.

And I think we're getting close.

It's been less than a week. I'm thinking we need a bed, maybe a couple of other random items, and we're close to making someone we have yet to meet very comfortable.

This has been so much fun! I still have a few steps to go, a few aspects to resolve, but I and my complicit cohorts have kicked ass.

It's all become very tangible, very possible. Just within our reach, the goal.

Yes, we have a few details to iron out.

But to review:

I, Mr. Fabulous and my kids have spent a piece of our discretionary time on this project.

I understand that I'm still in need of a beneficiary. But according to my calendar, I still have a few weeks before I'm officially done.

Lots can happen between now and then.

I have a feeling we're going to be very productive, based on what we've done so far.

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