My husband and I have moved around a few times during the 8.5 years we've been married (one of his occupational hazards), and it always sucks. The packing, the cleaning, the hours of driving, searching for a new place- it can get old quick. This time, there's an added (but welcome) complication, and it's name is homebrewing. Why does it make things complicated? I'm glad you asked . . .
Complication #1: It makes me feel like a hoarder.
One of the things I'm usually pretty good about is not accumulating too much stuff, because I know it'll all have to be packed up eventually. I also try to purge the house of unneeded items at least once per year. Those things kinda went out the window when I started brewing, though. It used to be that all my equipment fit nicely in the little cardboard box the kit came in. Then came the upgrade: a huge 6.5 gallon glass carboy, bottling bucket, several cases of empty glass bottles, various tubes, siphons, funnels, bottling tools, you get the point. I ended up commandeering one of my husband's shelving units in the garage, then eventually traded that one out for something bigger when the cases of finished product and our growing stash of cellared beer didn't fit on the small shelves anymore. When it came time to start purging, I knew my brewing space was no exception. Remember those cases of empty bottles? The logical part of my brain said, "Why are you going to lug all those empty bottles across the country? It's stupid, just get rid of them." The brewing side of my brain said, "It took you weeks of saving and hand washing bottles to build up this collection! Don't throw them, you'll just have to start over again. You'll use them eventually, anyway." After the silent panic attack, the logical side won, and into the recycle bin they all went. I'm not gonna lie, it hurt a little to let them go. And while I'm pretty sure I'm not an alcoholic, I sure as hell looked like one after throwing out about 48 bottles at once. That eliminated some of the load, but I still have about 2 cases of home brew (if you want to take some off my hands, let me know) and a case of beer from assorted breweries that do not distribute where we're going (you can't have any of those, sorry) in addition to all of my equipment. I wasn't willing to purge anything else. It takes baby steps, people.
Complication #2: Moving awakens my OCD tendencies
I've heard enough horror stories about moves gone wrong that it makes me picky about the things that I let the moving crews touch. You never know what condition your stuff will be in when it gets to the other side, or if it will even make it there at all, so anything that I can't bear to lose gets packed neatly into plastic bins and comes with us instead. It should come as no surprise that when we got word of our upcoming move, my first thought was, "There's no way I'm letting the movers touch my brewing equipment!" Not only is all that shit expensive to replace if it gets broken or lost, I was a little skeeved out by the thought of my clean and sanitized stuff being touched by multiple hands and collecting who knows what kind of microbes in that dirty moving truck. Nope, I was going to take control. If I packed all the stuff very carefully in a clean bin and brought it with us, the only person I could blame if something went wrong was myself. I bought the biggest bin I could find at the store, but thanks to the bulky shapes of the carboys and bucket, it didn't all fit. So I ended up with a big bin, a smaller bin, and a few cardboard boxes. Add this to the 2 or 3 bins of other stuff from the house that I don't trust anyone else to touch, and it's pretty safe to say our vehicles are going to be packed tight! So much for not accumulating too much stuff.
Complication #3: I CAN'T BREW!!!
This might be the worst one of all. It's like an itch I can't scratch. I have a growing list of styles and recipes that I want to brew and can't, because everything is packed away. Sure, I could unpack everything if I really wanted to, but the logical side of my brain is in control right now, and it says no. On top of that, operations will probably still be on hold for a few months after we get to our destination, since we will be living out of an RV until we find a house. I'm trying really hard to stay strong. Hopefully, I'll be back up and running by our wedding anniversary, so I can work on 9 Year Itch! For now, I'm living vicariously through others via Instagram. Leave me your username or follow @drunkenborrachobrewing if you want to support my efforts ;-)