Halloween 1980 — Moving to The Dalton

Daily Prompt Trick or Trick It’s Halloween, and you just ran out of candy. If the neighborhood kids (or anyone else, really) were to truly scare you, what trick would they have to subject you to?

…give me daily prompt like this one would do it! Seriously? You want a REAL answer to this in a PUBLIC place?  As for fear — I’ll tell you about fear. You really want that? There’s nothing funny about it. For the last five — six — years I’ve been intermittently frightened and with reason, but before that? Oh baby. I’m not a person who likes scary movies or scary stories. I’ve had a scary life. You want details?

SO, instead, a little post about moving into new places on Hallowe’en. Not in the least scary, sorry…

Three times now I’ve moved into a new place around Hallowe’en. The first to my first apartment as a single woman. It was an upstairs apartment in a duplex near Washington Park in Denver; it dated from the turn of the century. It was never meant to be an apartment, but the upstairs to the downstairs. It had no heat unless the guy downstairs turned it on and I opened the door leading downstairs. The apartment saw many adventures, perhaps typical adventures of the newly-single 20 something. I moved from there in spring to an efficiency in the Bat Guano Arms in Capital Hill. Though the place was not “me” (meaning it was modern and convenient) I had a happy six months there but around the middle of October, 1979, I saw my dream apartment in The Dalton.

My lease to Bat Guano Arms was over on October 31 so I planned to move into The Dalton on the first of November. (If you follow the link, my apartment is what they now call “The Canterbury” and you can see actual photos of it…not as it was when I lived there, but… My rent was $145/month.) I had a VW Bug, Blue and helpers with their cars. My best friend — let’s call her Windy — and a guy from work who wanted to do me and felt helping me move was a decent payment on that opportunity. My dream apartment in Denver was a lot like my little dream house here in Monte Vista.

You don’t have a lot of stuff when you live in an efficiency apartment. All I had of any mass was my dad’s desk — which I managed to fit into the back of my bug. Don’t ask me how, but it had become a “thing” with me to prove that anything a semi-truck could do my VW could do…in more trips, of course.

The night was Denver fall — chilly but not terribly cold, with the oblique light of an autumn sunset. At a certain point we found ourselves in a store near a favorite bookstore. Was it a drugstore? I don’t know, but I think so.  It had a lunch counter, surprising to us. A German couple ran the store. They asked us to sit down. They served us cider and an assortment of canapes. The moment was disorienting enough to change the character of the evening. From then on, it seemed enchanted.

The sky went from orange/purple to black half-moon night as we took the last furniture into my new apartment. I had no bed yet, so I slept in the old place, knowing I would have a bed the next day — a futon for which I’d “mortgaged” my car. I would pick it and the frame up the next day and bring them back in my Bug (two trips).  I loved living there and nothing less than the chance to live and work in China could have shifted me out.



8 thoughts on “Halloween 1980 — Moving to The Dalton

  1. I had one of the original Hyundais, the tiny ones with an engine that barely moved the car. I used it to move three times. A combination of “no choice” and stubborn willfulness did the job for me. Great stories 🙂

    • Thank you! Those were good times — and I knew it, which is the best part of good times.

  2. Delightful to hear of a sensible non Halloween tale. I sit here visualising your new abodes.
    I can do without the scary too. 🙂

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