Three Forty One

by chris cunningham

On the Move

Did you know a part of me has been in L.A. this whole time? I loathe having to need a storage unit, but they’ve become a necessity because, well space. I hate that I’ve spent thousands for something just sitting there and no access to it since it’s so far away. That storage unit is a slice of my life from the 90s to about 2013. All physical memories have been held hostage within those walls. And there it sat like a little money vampire. Every month having to pipe down money to the US to pay for it. I couldn’t even go through it to throw things away. I finished a show, see below, and decided I would go save Private Ryan. Okay, Operation Storage Unit 341.

On the Move On the Move On the Move

I got online and started pricing U Hauls, time, routes, motels, logistics in general and came up with a mighty plan. Would it work? Let’s find out. Got my flight and booked my COVID test the day before flying. Although I self tested many times before to keep and eye on it. Negative, I can fly. April 9th I flew down to Santa Ana and met my mom at the airport. I took her to Disneyland because it’s just too close not to go, right? Damn I miss being able to go down there just for lunch and ride a few rides. Took my employee pass and got us in freeeeeee and visited Galaxy’s Edge for the first time and Avenger’s Campus in California Adventure. Picked up some gifts and then stayed at my parents. Just hung out a bit that weekend and went through some boxes before beginning the journey north on Monday morning.

Epic boring road trip alert ahead. Picked up the U Haul and drove to Burbank where I expected some friends to show but a lack of communication led to me loading the whole truck by myself. 3 hours later… done. 341 is now in the truck. Quick stop for lunch at the Burbank In-N-Out and… what no? Driving a 20′ truck through Burbank and into that parking lot is too much for how tired I was. I would have loved some Tito’s or Paco’s on the west side but the thought of going back over the hill was also too much, so Burbank Zankou Chicken it is. After I got some wifi I was finally able get messages from some friends and they all drove to Burbank to have lunch and see me off. Blaine brought me two bikes that he had in storage at his house for the last 7 years. Yikes. I walked out to the truck to open it up and the worst thing that can happen to a load, happened. The load had shifted and all the boxes came sliding out and crashing into the parking lot. Broken china, a box of loose pictures started blowing down San Fernando Rd. etc What a mess, gah. I was so tired but everyone came running and rescued everything and we reloaded the truck better this time. Hopefully that’s the worst thing that happens.

I booked a motel in Santa Nella right next to Pea Soup Anderson’s because you know, pea soup. Long day but a short day of driving and uneventful after Burbank. The Grapevine was beautiful and I’ve driven it hundreds of times. Checked into San Nella about 9pm and then grabbed dinner and crashed. Tomorrow is the first day of two days of long haul driving.

Good night of sleep but I have to get up into Oregon by tonight to stay on schedule. I might have to add here that I have to get to the Vancouver storage unit by Thursday with plenty of time because it’s closed on Good Friday and have to return the truck by Saturday morning. So 10+ hours today and 2 tank fills at $150 a pop. #$#! Rotten Robbie is the cheapest gas in the valley, but he sure is rotten. Anyway, I cycled through the four types of radio stations in the Central Valley… Ranchero, Religious, Country and Classic Rock. Alright, classic rock it is. Insert montage video of road trip footage with rock soundtrack. Got into Oregon and the higher passes had some snow and rain. Rain, wind, snow, sun is all just regular weather. Hurricane, blizzard, heatwave those are all bad weather. Didn’t have that. Stayed in Roseburg along the river and found a Costco nearby so I thought I’d pop in and have a look. Wow, there is NOBODY here. Maybe 10 shoppers in the whole of the warehouse. They’re usually so over-subscribed it was nice to just randomly walk through. They also had a petrol station outside with even cheaper gas than Robbie. Take that you rotten scoundrel. Then sleep took over my body.

On the Move

Second day of long haul driving. Left Roseburg with the goal of either getting to my sister’s or Bellingham. I found the farthest north In-N-Out as of this writing and grabbed lunch. After driving for a long time through Eugene, Salem, Portland, Tacoma, and then Seattle I really didn’t feel like catching a ferry out to the island to see my sister, so just staying in Bellingham. Got into Bellingham at 6pm which is pretty late to find a hotel not booked up. Yep, five hotels later I finally found a Holiday Inn by Bellingham Airport with a couple rooms. Went to dinner and then crashed.

Final day of road trip and crossing the border. Got up pretty early and hit the road, another Costco fuel up nearby and got to Peace Arch by 10AM. It’s nerve wracking crossing the border but the officer was cool. Triple vaxxed, had all my paper work and explained about never being able to get my stuff up to Canada before especially the last 2 years and she waved me through. Got into the storage unit and nailed the landing. I was so used to this bucket of bolts and its size I backed right into the loading bay like a boss. The new storage is so nice and clean and bright and and and just so damn convenient. My stuff is near me. So, unloaded… three hours later… done. Getting a peek into some of the clear boxes for the first time in 7 years was so exciting but going through all of this is for another time. I still had to move the other smaller storage unit into this one. Yes, I had three storage units to deal with. One tiny one in the building, one in downtown Vancouver, and one in L.A. Now it’s just one big one nearby. So it’s done, the last vestiges of a life in L.A. has come to an end. I had really hoped/thought I’d come back so I think the storage unit represented that little bit of holding on. But as it became clear that life is different now and in a good place, 341 belongs up here. Although you have a new name, 133, you’re still 341 to me.

Gather round for the upcoming “crazy things found in my time capsule storage unit” posts as I go down memory lane.

On the Move On the Move