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Sunday, January 06, 2008

Clean Up Your Life

clean up your life, the rest will come along after that

This thought jumped out at me just now. I was thinking about various things, including a friend of mine from Bloomington. He and I had a pact, begun over a decade ago, to encourage each other in getting rid of our common problem of clutter, chaos, and junk filling our lives and living spaces. Ok, it may have been closer to 2 decades ago. Time flies. Anyway, a couple of years into this he had an upstairs neighbor have a water leak, which came into his apartment. This was in an old house, and he was contracting out in DC at the time and not home for a couple of months to find it. His apartment was a total mess, what with all the papers and such and technical journals in boxes and general disarray. He was forced to go through his place and move everything around since most of his furniture, all the carpet and some walls all were trashed. He upgraded from the normal college decor of blocks and board shelving and milk crates that he'd hung onto just out of inertia for the 10 or so years he'd already been out of college. He then ended up getting back together with a girlfriend from college, getting married, buying a condo on the lake. Recently I talked to him. He called me because it seems that his condo had been trashed by smoke damage from a laptop charger. Again, he wasn't home for weeks. He had to move everything out of the condo and have it totally remodeled. He'd found my phone number in some stuff he was, a year later, finally unpacking.

What does this have to do with me? Well, I have felt for many years that the key to getting over my inertia is to get rid of my STUFF. It is just so hard. Most of it really is junk. What isn't actual trash could be replaced for under $20 at any *Mart. I think that these thoughts are going through my mind right now because even as I'm making progress, it is still just as difficult to turn loose of the stuff. Even knowing that I haven't regretted getting rid of anything so far.

Yesterday I made a trash run. It really isn't so bad now. The first center I went to when I first moved here has been my only bad experience. I now go to another one, one that doesn't have a bitch in the toll booth. I will take recyclables today, then take a Goodwill load when I go to run my last minute errands. When I get home, I'll start packing and loading the truck so I can head out to the next fielding tomorrow morning.

This fielding is in the Atlanta area. I was going to try to do some day hiking on the AT while I'm over there. A woman who was hiking with her dog in that area on New Years Day was kidnapped and presumably murdered, the story is still coming out. It's sad that something like that makes me worried about heading out to an area I like. In truth, it is probably even safer now because everyone on the trail is in high alert mode. However, this is the third murder on the trail in the past 3 months. Maybe the same guy did all of them, and they have him in custody now. At any rate, I'll play the hiking by ear for now. I'm taking my camping gear. Also, from here on out till sometime in May there will be an increasing amount of traffic on this part of the AT as folks start their thru hikes.

Still pondering how much I need to get rid of the vast majority of stuff here, and wondering why it is do darn difficult.

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