• 59°

Let’s get things moving here, guys

Up in DeSoto County, the real estate market is smokin’ hot. Son No. 1 and his wife understand this, so they had a set plan when it came time to look for a larger home: Don’t list until there’s a bird in hand. Well, it turns out they knew what they were talking about. Last month they found a new address to their liking, then sold their current one to a cash buyer over the course of one weekend. Wow.

Next came the fun part, of course. Packing up, taking down, throwing away. Weeping, wailing, gnashing of teeth. Moving. Oh, joy.

I had a two-fold assignment as part of the deal — kid keeper and door opener — with the first job starting a few days early. I met the mom in Winona and took two littles off her hands so she would have her fingers free to sign all those papers at closing. At the appropriate time we loaded up for the return trip, plus three. The movee had sent out an SOS. His dad and two brothers responded.

“You better have everything packed up and ready to load when we get there,” Son No. 3 quipped.

“And a chiropractor on speed dial,” I thought to myself.

It’s a three-hour drive from here to there, which gave the kiddos and the uncles special bonding time. At some obscure mile marker along the way, a granddarling wasn’t getting the answer she wanted. Frustrated, her uncle finally sputtered, “How many times are you going to ask me that question?”

“Five,” she replied without a moment’s hesitation.

We laughed, then she entered into a conversation about the other uncle’s company wheels. He was bemoaning its soccer mom vibe. I believe he even labeled it a “grocery getter,” so I was doing the mom thing, trying to assure him otherwise, when the preschooler piped up from the third row.

“What does it look like?”

Her uncle kept it simple. “A van. Silver,” he called back over his shoulder.

There was a pause, then she let out a sigh worthy of a 50-year-old. “Oh.”

We arrived around dark, and the guys went to work hauling stuff between the living room and a big Penske truck. Meanwhile, a neighbor tried to get her son to hug the granddarlings goodbye (no doing), and I got the mother-in-law of the year award for cleaning the floor after the washer and dryer dollied out.

The next morning dawned Mid-South hot, one of those fry-an-egg-on-the-sidewalk kind of days. I snapped an obligatory photo of the happy couple in front of their emptied first home, then we took off for the land of milk, honey and increased square footage. Their new place is about 10 miles out of town, which was drive time enough for my guys to spot a promising barbeque joint and a winding line outside a driver’s license station.

“Why doesn’t everyone just get an 8-year license?” someone dared ask.

“Because they don’t think they’ll live that long,” came the reply from the driver’s seat.

About that time, we passed Laughter Road. My husband noted the irony of the “Dead End” sign right beside it. Then Son No. 2 decided to pull a prank.

HIM: Spell “shop.”

ME: S-H-O-P.

HIM: What do you do at a green light?

ME: Stop.

HIM: No, you don’t.

Then we arrived at the new abode, a totally empty two-story where I spent the next few hours fulfilling my other moving role — front door opener. To be clear, this is a role that gets little credit but is of great importance on moving day, especially if heavy furniture is involved and the heat index is over a hundred. About an hour into it, I took a break long enough to ask what the grandguy thought of his new home.

“There are lots of places,” was his simple assessment, which pretty much says it all. Well, that and a bit about the kid next door having a dirt bike.

Things went smoothly until lunch, thanks to weeks of prep work on the part of the new homeowners. But when they called Papa John’s in search of a couple of large pepperonis, they got a big surprise.

“Oh, wow,” I heard Son No. 1 say in disbelief. “Guess what? They don’t deliver here.”

No kidding? Well, welcome to the country. How’s the internet?

You can contact Kim Henderson at kimhenderson319@gmail or follow her on Twitter at @kimhenderson319.