Moving Day in Davis is always August 31… the day that nearly every lease in this town expires. Roughly half the student population moves out. Many people are stuck with not having a place to move in to until their new lease starts sometimes up to 4 or 5 days later. Every U-Haul is spoken for months in advance (get on the will-call lease) by people wanting to move in one trip or simply need a place to store their possessions overnight. The roads fill with stuffed automobiles. Sometimes mattresses fall off cars. Apartment complexes place giant dumpsters in the parking lot, which are summarily filled by moving students, desperate to lighten their loads. Others in houses abandon goods in over-flowing garbage cans, on sidewalks and neighbors lawns. In short a HUGE amount of trash, dejected valuables and stress is created.

Moving day can be a real nightmare. Residents commonly spend two or three days packing, cleaning, and lightening their loads before they even start to move. Great quantities of stress are added to the equation for those who wish to recover their security deposit. Cleaning commonly occurs until the last minute they have to vacate their residence (often midnight 8/31). Requirements for professional carpet cleaning complicate logistics further.

To ease the packing process, a lot of people simply throw stuff out instead of bringing it with them. One day they’ll leave a couch on the side of the road only to go searching for a couch for their new house in a few days. It is not just big items that are wantonly discarded. Many people will throw out things like tea pots and brooms that they will soon have to replace. Added to the nightmare are all of the uncertainties found in moving to a new place. Is that mold toxic?

To dumpster divers, of course, it’s like Christmas.

[via DavisWiki]

Last year I took both Summer Sessions and was subject to 18 hours of homelessness (but I had my friends with me!) with my 10″ U-Haul truck full of all my belongings and furniture. Unfortunately, this year I will not be participating and a little sad about that :\ Moving Day is a thriller of an experience. My new lease doesn’t start until September 12th, contrary to the usual start date of September 1st, so I’m packing up everything and taking it back home to Mountain House in little shipments by car to save money.

My mother is an avid supporter of “dumpster diving,” which, in Davis, is much more respectable than what the literal translation implies. She wants to cruise the city and scope out the “donation areas” (AKA where people leave all the stuff that’s not worth the effort of moving it). I’ll see if I can take some pictures of what’s out there. I guess I could use a new TV stand.

I’ve been cleaning my apartment, wiping and vacuuming it from floor to ceiling. Why the hell is it so dusty?!I kept sneezing the entire time. Windowsills are the most abominable things to clean, full of all sorts of nasty surprises. Let’s play a game: how much of your security deposit can you get back?