This morning I finished locking up the physical traces of my life. It’s all there, in a 10 x 10 storage unit, among a sea of white metal doors, above a QFC here in Seattle.
There’s a reason why I haven’t written here much over the past month: because of a difficult situation, I was forced to move from the apartment that I’d been residing in here in Seattle for almost the past four years. I’d been searching and searching for a new place via the failscape that is craigslist, but when the day of reckoning arrived yesterday, I still had not be able to acquire a space. So, everything went into storage. I’m writing this from a local hotel room, fresh from chasing leads, and know that I’ll have to start couch surfing tomorrow.
It’s a strange thing, packing up the content of your life and placing it in such alienating place as a storage complex. There’s a certain maze-like hive quality to this one, on the top floor over a local supermarket. The repeating sequence of doors is almost hyponotic. It’s hard not to wonder about each one: who it represents, what lives and memories are there, and if they are partially empty, or stuffed like mine is, resembling the interior chambers of Tutankhamen’s tomb. Storage units really are historical depositories, when you think about it.
I didn’t finish unloading my stuff until this morning. Last night, as I was placing the last miscellaneous items in my rented truck, I lingered there in the space that I’d been living in for successive years. There’s always something melancholy about leaving a place where you’ve resided, where so many memories lie. That basement apartment was home to me: the only home I’ve known in Seattle. Now, until I can line up another space, I am literally homeless. And that is terrifying. And depressing.
Because in the end, you wonder about the roads that brought you to your location.
Mine just happens to be a Travelodge.
I went to see a promising new place today. They told me that they’d let me know tonight. Here’s hoping. I feel uprooted and twisting. Earlier today, I was in University Village, wandering about outside the shops, watching people walk by, wondering if any of them had ever felt that insecure sensation that I am experiencing. I sat at Starbucks with my laptop, and chased leads, among dozens of animated people. But I felt alone.
Of course, this is merely temporary. I’m not really a refugee. I’m not really homeless. I can couch surf for a few days, and it won’t kill me. But when I don’t have that address, that place nailed down, a space to call my own, I cannot relax. It gnaws at me, and I wonder about the people who don’t have the solutions I have. Hopefully this experience will leave me with a little more empathy.
But in the meantime, I need to find a place to live. I cannot help but think that I’ve done something terribly, terribly wrong with my life to even be typing this.