Preparing for the Move out West

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Me in my Room in Ballston Spa, New York

I gave notification at work in early October that I would be moving to Portland, Oregon. I suggested that Greg hire Gwen to take my place. Gwen went in for the interview and got the job. Since it would cost more to move all my furniture across the country then it was worth I figured it would be easier to just leave it behind and get new stuff once I got out to Portland. I asked Gwen if she got the job if she would want to move in to the apartment I was living in and take it over once I moved out. She said yes, and that solved my problem of what to do with all the furniture I was leaving behind.

I was also able to leave a lot of my stuff that I did not want to throw away or take with me to Portland. Then my dad would be able to pick it up and put it in the storage shed up at Raquette Lake when he drove up from Florida in April. Also while I was on the trip for two months I could have my mail continue to go to Ballston Spa and check in with Gwen every once in a while to see if anything important came.

This also saved Gwen the hassle of finding an apartment near where she would be working and having to buy furniture. So it was a good arrangement for both of us. She moved in on Sunday January 6th. She did not bring all of her stuff up at once. She made several trips as we went back to Binghamton on several weekends. As she unpacked her stuff I used the empty boxes from her to pack my stuff for the trip and to go in storage at Raquette Lake.

Gwen and her Cat Yoda in Living Room

I took Monday January 7th off from work so I could show Gwen around the area. At first we were planning on going to the different shops in Saratoga Springs, but there was a snow storm and neither of us wanted to go anywhere in the car. So we walked around Ballston Spa instead. We went out for some pizza at a local pizza place up the street. Then we checked out the Bottle Museum. After that we looked around some of the stores in Ballston Spa. That evening Gwen and I started a jigsaw puzzle.

Since Gwen did not own a car I had set it up with Steve, a co-worker of mine to give Gwen rides to and from work once she started. Since Steve and Gwen never met before he came over one night and we went out to dinner in Saratoga Springs. We told Gwen many stories about working at KAPL to prepare her, and give her an idea of what she was getting into.

One afternoon Gwen and I went to Crossgates Mall in Albany to see the movie I am Sam. After the movie we decided to look for some car dealers so Gwen could get a car. We stopped at a Ford dealership on the way back. There Gwen test-drove one car and we looked at a few more. The dealer tried to get us to close a deal on one of the cars, but Gwen wanted to go to a few other places first to see what else was there before making her final decision.

One weekend in the morning Gwen and I went to Saratoga Spa Park to walk around and check out some springs and a geyser. It was a nice sunny day with only a little snow on the ground. After walking around there for a few hours we went back home. Then we went out to eat at a Chinese restaurant. We were meeting Karen and Tracy there. I wanted Gwen to meet them so she would at least know a couple people in the area.

While we were eating Gwen mentioned that she was looking for a car and they suggested that we try a place off of the Northway in Saratoga Springs. First we tried a place that was near the restaurant. The guy at that place that we looked at cars with and test-drove one with seemed a little creepy. He suggested another place near Albany. We went there. I had a bad feeling about it, but did not say anything. Once we got there the guy there was very rude and said no one can buy a car with only $100 down and Gwen would have no chance of getting any credit for a loan.

After that we went to the place in Saratoga Springs. The people there were much nicer, and Gwen found a car there she really liked. After test-driving it she decided to get it. She was able to get the loan and pay $100 down to get the car. This solved the problem of Gwen having no form of transportation once I headed out west.

Gwen in her Car in Ballston Spa

More pictures and text to be added to this section soon...

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