Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Buried in junk!

 Oh my goodness  -- I don't know what was wrong with me yesterday, but when I woke up, it was like I was paralyzed. I lay in bed for a long time, dozed on and off, and couldn't bring myself to get out of bed. And this vertigo is a pain, but as Elle mentioned, it could very well be a sign of dehydration which I strongly suspect. 

I'm feeling much better today, so that's a good thing. 

So if you are traveling and need to rent a car, you are in for a shock. In the past, I've not usually reserved a vehicle. OK -- that was WAY in the past. I had booked a compact car months ago, and the price was high. Then I had to change my reservation because I changed plans. I called TWICE to make that change, and the first time -- the person was a dud -- she just didn't make things happen. The second time, I actually got to speak to someone who made sense, and yes, all the changes were made. I did not ask for names (stupid me!), and I did NOT get a new confirmation, which I should have followed up on. 

When I arrived, I found that they had given my car up because I did not pick it up on the day I was supposed to. I find that totally offensive -- I have a car booked, and if I'm not here -- could they not call to find out what's going on? Nope -- they just give the car away. Sigh..............

Anyway -- they had a different car -- an SUV. OK -- I'll take whatever, but what ticks me off is the price. When I knew I had to change the reservation, I tried to do it online. But I couldn't change the reservation online, so I had to call, and I noticed that for a SHORTER length of time, the cost was $200 more. That's just totally out of whack. So I paid the higher price and got a car. I got lucky. 

I don't get how stupid (I shouldn't be saying that word), but they really don't know what the left hand is doing. The agent said I should have called the DESK at the airport. OK -- so I called the number on the reservation and got someone - two different people. How the heck do I know where I'm calling and how much work do I need to do to make a change? Why don't you put the correct number on the reservation? 

I'll be calling them when I get home, but I suspect that I'm out that $200. It's just totally irksome, and I've heard many horror stories from other people. People who change their plans because they don't want to pay that price. I get it --- in the future, I might consider how I travel and where because of the high cost of car rentals. It's not even the high cost, it's the possibility that it may be canceled at the last minute. 

Travel is a total mess these days. 

The good news is that I go home tomorrow. Don't get me wrong, I'm enjoying my stay, but after yesterday -- I want to go home. It's been a whirlwind tour, to say the least, and well, I miss home and my girls. 

So I got to visit with Mom and Dad when I arrived. Actually, it was Father's Day and so got to be with him on his day. I don't think that has happened in over 40 years! My brother and SIL were also there, as was one of my aunts who lives close by. I got to visit with another aunt yesterday, so it's been an action-packed visit. I keep forgetting to take pictures of everyone! DARN!!!! 

We decided to get out to the farm to do a bit more investigating. What I am about to show you is very disturbing, so be prepared. 

So my parents, like many of yours, grew up in hard times. My parents were born in the 1930s and they didn't have much growing up. Anything they had, became precious. Some people were able to get over that and some people did not. My parents were of the "did not" category. 

There are two houses on the farm and both of them are chalk-a-block filled with crap, even though they moved stuff into the apartment where they now live. Fortunately, we do NOT have to empty the houses as they will more than likely be destroyed at some point. That will not happen until they are both gone, but we talked about it yesterday -- my brother and I. Would I want to be there -- I don't know. Part of me says yes, to have closure, and part of me says no -- the memories would be too hard.

And let's just say that what we did yesterday, was not with their blessing. So if you know my mother -- you keep quiet. The big thing now will be totally MUM about what we found. We do NOT want another BOOK incident. I'll tell you that story another day. 

There is no real basement under the old, old house. But part of it had a dirt cellar and we stored our veggies and preserves there. This is what the door looks like. 

The cellar in the old old house

Yep -- that is an opening and you go down these steep stairs. I'm guessing when we were kids, that there was a light down there, but there is no electricity in that house now. Creepy? You bet -- I can't imagine that I actually went down there as a kid to get stuff for dinner. 

There have been issues with water and at some point, the cellar was filled with water. It's so eery to look there and I swear, it was like looking at pictures of the Titanic. Even though the water is gone, it's damp, musty, moldy, and every other disgusting word you can think of. 

What is disturbing is that there was ZERO effort to clean up that house when they moved to the new one. And we're not sure where all the stuff was hidden when we lived there. It's not good enough to have one of something, they needed multiples. And LOTS -- not just an extra, but many extras. 

There are boxes and boxes of magazines and catalogs from the 1960s, and onwards. Don't get excited -- this stuff is NOT worth anything! And even if it was, it would take someone weeks and months to process it all, and then the mere pittance you would get, wouldn't be worth all the time. We've talked to people and done our research, so we know what to take and what to leave. 

Let's not forget that this is a house that NO ONE has lived in for almost 50 years, except the raccoons, squirrels, and mice, so YES -- it's disgusting!!!

So after a bit of processing, I went into the other house. I lived in this house for one year before I moved away. My parents moved out 6 years ago. It too is dirty, but mostly due to dust. No animals -- yet. 

It's a challenge to see in this photo, but my mom likes mobiles and wasn't content to have one -- NO -- there must be twenty or more hanging from the ceiling. Why? 

Oh -- that table? It wasn't that clear when we got there. Olive spent a lot of time moving things to clear that table. In an ideal world, we would have a dumpster at the door, which is almost invisible to see because nature has reclaimed (already) the gardens along the pathway. But there is no room to work. Every surface is heaped with stuff. 

Every bed but their own is heaped with stuff. The hallways are jammed with shelves for books so you practically have to turn sideways to walk down them. I mean -- it's a serious case of hoarding. SERIOUS. 

We have found scrapbooks and yes -- you guessed it. Not one scrapbook but MANY scrapbooks. We brought some in and looked at them last night. Some of them got tossed as they had zero things of interest in them, although my brother got loads of Valentine's! And for some reason, there were pages and pages with the fronts of Christmas cards glued to them. 

I did rescue a few things, but all in all, it's dirty and disgusting to deal with it all. 

There is a room downstairs that is filled with books. Old novels, old schoolbooks, and PAPER. Yes --you could say that the apple didn't fall far from the tree when I think back to my office. OK -- so I WILL finish working in that office because I can't imagine anyone doing this with my stuff. 

I HAD to get a box and fill it with paper that would go into the recycling cart in the city because that made me feel better. But WOW -- the things she saved would blow your mind. 

Let's just say that they NEVER threw anything away. She kept every catalog and coupon from those record companies and book offers. And she would list what she had purchased. She kept every scrap of blank paper just in case they needed something. EVERY return envelope. Magazine card inserts. I mean EVERYTHING. 

The one thing I'll give her credit for is that "like" items were bundled together. OK -- the apple did not fall far from the tree. 

And what I don't get is that she kept piling and sorting and collecting and there isn't ONE space in that house that doesn't have stuff piled into it. And they are doing the very same thing in their apartment. The worst part is that they cannot see the junk. 

I found postmarks on leters that they had received from many years ago. I mean -- why would you feel compelled to keep this stuff? 

I have a few boxes of stuff to go through today and most of it is getting tossed. See -- it will be so easy to toss that paper crap in my office when I get home! It is NOTHING like this and the quantity is not nearly as vast. And it's clean!

I did spot this little box and I almost caved and brought it home, but then I thought better and took a picture instead. 

It was getting late by the time we left and we spotted many deer along the road. Of course, I didn't get a picture because I was too slow and by the time I thought of taking a picture, we didn't see any more deer. 

However, this province is known as the land of the living skies and these were some clouds that I took at about 10:30 last night with my phone while we were in the car. I mean the truck!

Those dark dots are the chips in the windshield which is a trait of country living or driving on gravel roads. 

I had to laugh at this last night. I got my Fitbit report last night. And well, I've not only stepped out of first place, but I am LAST. I have not walked much since I left home over a week ago and I think is also helping me to feel out of sorts. 

I guess you can't really see in that picture, but of the four people listed, I'm in last place! Now how did that happen? 

Well, on this kind of trip, I'm not really in charge of my routine and it drives me nuts. If you are working (as we were in Vancouver), you tend to eat as a group, and travel as a group (although I did walk to and from the hotel). Then you are stuck on a plane or in a car and now that I'm in Saskatchewan, I'm at the mercy of what little time there is and visiting. So no time to walk. 

Thankfully, I'll be heading home late tomorrow so that I can get back to my routine! 

Well, I've blabbed on enough about this mess. At some point, we need to STOP going back. We're not gaining a whole lot and there is no way that all that stuff can be dealt with. It is JUNK and no one wants it. My brother and SIL need to realize that -- there is NO sense in further wasting time. We have a bit more that I'd like to go through -- the problem is that it's piled so high and deep that you have no clue what is all there. 

Anyway -- I might just take a wee nap before I move on with the day as it was ANTHER very late night and my body is just not coping well. 

Have a great day!!!



  1. Well I have to admit , I would keep that swear box. It is cute and original. I thought I was looking at a picture of a store with all that stuff on shelves.

  2. All I've got is "sigh" and I'm sorry. I'm in total agreement that is highly unlikely to be worthy of precious hours/days/weeks.

    I hope you have a terrific day today! :-)

  3. That had to be a shock for you. Apparently hoarding is much more common an issue than I realized. There is a member of my family who also hoarded until she had to go into nursing care and no longer could.

  4. I feel your pain. Thursday I was on 2 planes with a 3hr layover and got bursitis in my hip. I'm now walking like Aunt Bee. And my mom hoarded newspapers and mail and lots of other things. But her house didn't sit like that, I don't blame you for being grossed out.

  5. As difficult as this is for you and your siblings, the thing to remember is that hoarding is actually a mental illness. Not something that someone can get over without some help. ☹️

  6. Wow - did your parents/Mom run a store of some sort? It looks like she had ceramics to paint and then put in the oven for glazing. I love paper, but I certainly would be over whelmed here as well. Hoarding - It is an illness that you have to receive help for. Tiny steps.