A sample text widget

Etiam pulvinar consectetur dolor sed malesuada. Ut convallis euismod dolor nec pretium. Nunc ut tristique massa.

Nam sodales mi vitae dolor ullamcorper et vulputate enim accumsan. Morbi orci magna, tincidunt vitae molestie nec, molestie at mi. Nulla nulla lorem, suscipit in posuere in, interdum non magna.


In my experience, moving is painful, lengthy, tiring, challenging, and exciting. But my move last weekend, from a house in the flat to a cottage in the hills, surpassed even my own expectations. Aside from the interminable number of trips necessary to get my stuff into a truck and from point A to a much-higher-elevation point B, there was the issue of my piano.

The setting: a cottage, ~20 vertical feet above the street, with access either via
1) 15 steps, a sloping sidewalk, and two narrow 90-degree turns or
2) A neighbor’s steep driveway (>12%), gate, and long traverse downhill across a hilly backyard, around flowerbeds, and between trees.
In addition, there were two engineers, a teacher, a professional traveler and a piano dolly available to accomplish the task.

Plan A was to drive the truck w/ piano to the top of the driveway, unload there, and, using two sheets of 3/4″ plywood, take the piano sheet by sheet through the backyard traverse. However, that plan quickly unraveled when it became apparent that the rental truck would not be able to go up the driveway: the junction between the driveway and the street was too steep and the back of the truck hit the ground before the wheels could begin climbing.

This led to a lengthy period of head scratching, fast talking, and postponed action. We considered taking the piano up the stairs, turning it on its end, and attempting to navigate the 90-degree turns at the top. We considered tying the piano to a car and pulling it up the driveway. We considered putting the piano on a trailer and towing it up the driveway. We considered donating the piano to charity. We eventually talked of letting it roll uninhibited down the street and allowing Fate to take over from there.

In the end, we put the piano on the dolly, rolled it out of the truck, and pushed it slowly and steadily to the top of the driveway. From there, the fun was just beginning, as getting the piano to stay upright, on the dolly, and keeping the dolly on at least one of the pieces of plywood at all times proved to take the better part of 30 minutes (not counting the years taken off the movers’ lives due to stress and strain) to travel approximately 100 feet.

Happily, this story ended well, and the piano now sits in a tiny cottage where it enjoys a view of the golden gate, the city, and the driveway that it overcame on the way. And I owe a serious debt of gratitude to everyone who helped me move as well as a promise that if I ever move again (no doubt a reality, but not one I’m in any mood to accept), I will hire professionals and entrust them with the task of keeping my piano from careening down the driveway and into the hands of Fate.

2 comments to Moving

  • that is hilarious…

    this post needs pics of your cottage, or it’s view, certainly!

  • teachiro

    I’m really surprised that someone hasn’t made a show called “Extreme Movers” or “Moving: Impossible” where people handle such piano-esque tasks.

    And if you don’t want to hire professional movers next time, you might want to consider a change of instrument. I would suggest harmonica or kazoo.