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Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Mark Lyon

Moving in New York is an especially hellish experience

Written by
Rob LeDonne

Moving to a new home isn’t an enjoyable experience in most cities, but in New York—thanks to a real estate market designed by Satan, residential buildings ideally proportioned for wee fairy folk and the ubiquitous presence of movers’ oldest and most relentless foe: walk-ups—it will you leave you traumatized.

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When an impending move is on the horizon, people start calculating commute times between different subway stops with a mad frenzy and volatile attention to detail, Beautiful Mind–style. They become obsessed with trying to figure out if anyone they know has a car—or if they even knowv anyone who can drive at all. On tear-drenched sidewalks, couples half-heartedly try to pull apart metal bed frames with no hope of passing them through unforgiving prewar stairwells. Sooner or later, moving day comes for us all.

The ordeal usually begins once you’ve finally packed all of your worldly posessions into the cheap cardboard boxes you carried home from your corner bodega. Then it’s time to cart all that clutter to the truck parked three blocks away, the closest spot you could find as your street once again doubles as a set for Law and Order: SVU.

Next up is the extremely slow and relentlessly horrifying adventure that is driving a large vehicle in New York. Once you finally arrive at your new home, you’re forced to enact a sick and twisted mirror image of that morning’s events: unloading the truck and forcing your tired shell of a body to carry everything up multiple flights of stairs—including that box of Playbills you refuse to get rid of and the bike you haven’t used since signing up for Citi Bike.

Luckily, once it’s all over, you can at least bask in the relief that it’s finally time to settle in to your new place. The dark day is behind you. That is, until the next time you move.

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