Dena Taylor | Heigh-Ho, Heigh-Ho, that's not how I thought I'd go: Denver or bust 2013 – Part I
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Heigh-Ho, Heigh-Ho, that's not how I thought I'd go: Denver or bust 2013 – Part I

Heigh-Ho, Heigh-Ho, that's not how I thought I'd go: Denver or bust 2013 – Part I

But what if I hated Austin? Leaving the familiar and safe confines of Seattle was scary. I had to keep reminding myself that going outside of my comfort zone was the point. It was time for a change. It was months in the making and I was as ready as I could be… — excerpt from my memoir, I Don’t Wanna Be Pink

Ten years later, replace Austin with Denver,  Seattle with Austin, and here we go again! You only live once and it’s time to try out a new place. Why Denver? It’s a different decision than when I moved to Austin — less romantic, more practical, as in I’ll be mostly equidistant to catch nonstop flights to visit family living in either direction but still get lots of sunshine per year (Vitamin D may play a role in breast cancer prevention). But I am excited about having four seasons (all in one day, apparently) and being close to mountains again — I grew up going to the mountains — I miss that.


The idea of moving has been brewing for a few years but really took shape over the last few months.

August/September -Spend three weeks at friend-I-met-in-Tanzania’s house in Denver to see if I like it. I do. I will.

September – Network online and in person with Denver graphic designers and writers. Yes, work to be had. Start telling my people. Stalk Craigslist for apartments. Target November move when lease is up, weekend before Thanksgiving, before snows falls everywhere.


Early October – Formulate. Formulate. Formulate a plan.

Mid October – Denver friends screen apartment. I put down deposit. Denver-based buddy Liz to help move. Will fly to Austin, drive rental truck, following me in my car, or share truck driving and we’ll tow car. One night in Amarillo. Hire burlies to load/unload on either end.


End of October – Dining table won’t fit in new apartment. Hire someone to drive it to Mom’s 4 hrs away. Open trailer. Massive rain storm. Some water damage. Needs restoration anyway. Still disappointed. Give 30-day notice to landlord. Giddy.


November 11 – I wrote recently about my trepidation around mammograms, moving, and November. Elated and grateful to pass the mammo this day, I shifted gears to executing the November 23 move and hoped to hell nothing too crazy would go wrong.

Later that day – Receive out-of-the-blue email from awesome friend/designer. Tell her I’m moving. She offers to coordinate a farewell happy hour. Almost say no, too much trouble, but catch myself — she is offering a beautiful thing. Accept.

November 13 – Packing under way. All clients aware of, unfazed by move, will continue to give work. Thankful! Picked up newly repaired car after (drunk?) neighbor parked into it Halloween night.


November 13 -19 – Humbled by sis who drives hours to pick get chair I can’t take, brings boxes; and another friend who gives even more boxes; and four amazings who come by separately to help me pack (real gift is getting them all to myself for a few hours). One has a knack for labeling.


November 19 – Moving in four days. Amarillo – the halfway point – forecasting snow and freezing temps. Liz tells me her husband has double pneumonia. Might not come.

November 20 – Liz optimistic. Will confirm after husband sees doc Thursday, the day she’s to fly to Austin. Go to “Later Taylor” farewell happy hour. Love. Laugh. Love. Laugh. Love.


November 21 – Last day in apartment. Tape, label, tape, label. Pick up 14-ft rental truck. Contact high from young employee who reeked of pot. Liz’s husband in urgent care. Cancel her flight. Cancel Amarillo hotel. Will drive truck, tow car solo. Sis emails safer route through Kansas w/Salina stopover. Can do it alone but don’t wanna. No, you can. I really don’t wanna. Really, you can! I REALLY DON’T WANNA. But guess I will.

Drink wine out of jar from recycling.


Later that night – While rethinking options, Sis relays sitch to friends Jim and Michelle of Moka’s Dog Rescue in McKinney, TX., where she and Mom volunteer. Jim concerned about my solo truck/car tow, given impending winter storm. Offers to drive. I make arrangements  Whole body sighs in relief. Liz’s husband home, recovering. Liz has sinus infection and bronchitis — don’t think we were ever meant to move together. Screamy obnoxious neighbor and loud friends up ’til 1am, motivating.

To be continued.

Have you up and moved? Did it go off without a hitch or did you have to change plans? Would love to hear in Comments!


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