This continues the “Tips for a Successful DITY Military Move” series. You can check out Part I: The Preparation and Part III: The Aftereffect. Today’s post will focus on the actual move itself. Let’s get started.
The Morning Of:
- We packed up the remaining items and loaded them in the Uhaul. The mattress was the biggest item.
- While Ben finished packing, I ran down to our Internet provider and returned our Internet Modem/Router.
- We then had our apartment rental company inspect and check us out of our apartment. Fortunately, we got the nice check out person. Apparently the more strict one was sick that day. This nice check out person let us clean certain things as they went through our apartment so that we wouldn’t get charged extra.
- We then re-lived our first date in North Dakota. We picked up bagels at the first place we ate together and went to the local park and walked around. Granted four years ago when we had this date there was snow on the ground. In November, fortunately, we were snow-free.
- We then picked up some sandwiches and travel snacks to avoid pit stops – and then we hit the road.
On the Road:
- I put our valuables – safe, file folders, technology – in the cab of the Uhaul. Every evening I would bring these things into the hotel room with us. My mindset – if someone drove off with our Uhaul while we were sleeping, would we have all the priority items with us?
- Every morning, Ben would go into the Uhaul and I would stand outside to check that signal lights were plugged in (connecting the auto-transport and the Uhaul), that headlights were working, and that the basic safety measures were functioning properly.
- We drove about eight hours a day for four days. Day 1 North Dakota to Minnesota, Day 2 Minnesota to Missouri, Day 3 Missouri to Oklahoma, Day 4 Oklahoma to Texas.
- We did take the long way to Texas – to stop by Missouri. Ben’s grandma was offering us lots of free furniture and home decor – we couldn’t pass that up!
- I personally never drove the Uhaul. Ben did. I was a great passenger though!
- Ben is all about efficiency when it comes to road trips. “If the gas tank is full, then your bladder must be empty.” Ben wanted to stop only when we needed to fill up on gas. However, being that I have the bladder of an eighty year woman on diuretics, we stopped quite a bit. Rest Areas were great, since it was easy to pull off the highway and get right back on, plus there usually was plenty of room to park the Uhaul.
- For lodging, we stayed in military base hotels to cut costs. Although it was a bit of a hassle getting the Uhaul inspected, it definitely was worth the very affordable price for a bed to sleep in after a long day of traveling. Plus, we felt more secure knowing that our Uhaul was safer. While the hotel was far from luxury, it was a bed to sleep in and a roof over our heads. We arrived late and left early, so we weren’t there for the amenities. Since we did save quite a bit on lodging, we got a nice hotel room when we arrived in Texas on Sunday before we moved in on Monday. We were so tired and enjoyed a nice sleep before the unpacking chaos.
- We kept a folder in the Uhaul cab for all travel receipts. We were diligent about always making sure to get a receipt and immediately putting it in the folder. Everything – gas, hotels, and food – went into that folder while we were traveling.
- God definitely kept us safe on our way down. Fortunately, the only traveling-related incident we had was a flat tire – as you can see from the picture. This happened on Day 1 – we were three hours in, going down a hill, and the auto-transport tire blew. Fortunately, it was right by an exit, there was no one else on the freeway, and we were able to park in a church parking lot. We waited a few hours for Uhaul to get someone out to us. Uhaul handled this situation very well. They checked in on us every half an hour to tell us the status of the technician.
- We were grateful that the Lord kept us safe, our vehicle safe, and our belongings safe during our cross-country move.