Leaving Los Angeles, One truck at a time

It took quite a while to empty our apartment before leaving Los Angeles. We invited friends round to take what they wanted, and there was no shortage of willing Anglophiles looking to feather their nests with our cast-offs. One good thing about LA, is that there’s no shortage of friends with SUV’s and trucks to help with the move.

Moving Out of LA to Turkey

Whatever we couldn’t give away to friends or sell, got donated to various charities. Most of the big stuff went to Habitat for Humanity. Two burley men stopped by on a sweltering Wednesday afternoon and took most of the furniture with them.

Moving Out of LA to Turkey

And then there was One

The last thing to leave was my treasured orange couch. I was sad to see it go, but to be honest it wasn’t that comfortable anymore, and even though some friends were eager to take it off our hands, we couldn’t in all honest-discomfort let them take it. We feared hate mail and a chiropractic bill would wing its way to us if we did.

Moving Out of LA to Turkey

We eventually found a willing charity that earmarked the couch for recycling. I’m not sure how much benefit it provided them, but I was glad we didn’t have to help them carry it down our apartment steps.

Finally, without furniture, I had to find time to do some work, and with no chairs or tables to sit on, I got myself comfy on the carpet. In case you are in any doubt, walls don’t make good cushions.

Moving Out of LA to Turkey

Time to Disconnect from LA

I discovered that LA county gives you a rebate for electronic equipment. Apparently when you buy something electronic you are charged tax on it, and you can claim the tax back when you donate it for recycling. I scoured my draws and cupboards for unwanted electronic items .. but unsurprisingly the gadgets were vastly outnumbered by the myriad of cables and chargers I rounded up and wrangled into a bag bound for Goodwill.

Moving Out of LA to Turkey

Puff Pastry Fetish

The dreaded clean up of the apartment happened on yet another sweltering day in October. Every other October in this apartment has been fitting for the season, warm but bearable. But the one year when we could do with cool weather, the city decided to wrap us up in a blanket of heat waves.

With sweat glistening on my brow, I decided I’d cool down by cleaning out the fridge and freezer. Tucked at the back I discovered my secret fetish for Puff Pastry Shells. I obviously kept forgetting I had the pastry in the freezer and just kept buying more. But I never did get around to making those mushroom vol au vents!

Moving Out of LA to TurkeyFirst Trip for our Cases

Eventually it came time for our cases to go into storage at a friends house, while we bounced around LA at various house sits for the last couple of weeks in LA. Our 6 cases, a bike neatly wrapped in a box, a guitar and a set of golf clubs went on their first leg of their journey.

Seeing the starter kit for our new life in Turkey leave our home of 17 years was a start reminder of how far we’d achieved in our down-sizing efforts.

Moving Out of LA to TurkeyNow we could travel to our house sits with the clothes on our back, and our essentials stuffed into a couple of small carry on cases. It’s actually surprising how few belongings you actually need to have a fulfilling life.

After a house sit in LA for a week, we headed to Palm Springs for a week of 90 degree sunshine, before heading back to Hermosa Beach for a last couple of days of California sunshine, and some quality time with our closest friends.

Off to the Airport

Our cases received a much appreciated trip to the airport via yet another friend with a big truck. By now our cases had increased from 6 to 8 (last minute panic that we couldn’t have cases that weighed more than 32kg, meant we had to rush to the shops on the day before we traveled to buy a couple more cases to redistribute the weight evenly).

Moving Out of LA to Turkey

Each time we’d called Turkish airlines we got a different answer about the allowance and cost of excess luggage, so we weren’t feeling very confident about our ability to get our 11 pieces of luggage on our flight. Especially when the last guy we spoke too, recommended that we contact Turkish Airlines freight department.

We were even less confident that if the 11 pieces were accepted at LAX, that they would survive their overnight stop in Istanbul and all arrive together safely in Bodrum. All we could do was take out luggage insurance, cross our fingers, and wallow in another sleepless night full of refused-luggage nightmares.