Submitted by Diana Igorevna Petrova
They call me Grandma’s piano. It is hard to assume how old I am, but apparently quite old, I would rather say even vintage. I vaguely remember how or where I had been made or when I had been installed in my first living room, but I have clear memories how I lived there at the first. From time to time furniture around me reeled and even I teetered a little bit. This happened because of bombs being constantly exploded not far away from the house. I remember faces scared of outside rumble and skinny bodies dried out because of pernicious lack of food, but despite terrifying atmosphere, nagging fear and perennial hunger that lasted for about four years, all family members practiced playing me at least one hour a day. Now they are all gone except for a little girl who is now an elderly woman called Grandma. It seems to me that I owe her everything I have – tuneful sound, properly functioning parts and undamaged surface. It is not that I intend to brag but if I was not so properly maintained I would not be such a durable and aesthetically beautiful instrument.
However, I do admit that I can be troublesome. Being an upright piano, I am a 39″ tall and very heavy to lift because of the cast-iron frame. Approximately my weight accounts for 350 pounds. Due to my size, I do not fit in passages and elevators. Additionally, I am very susceptible to the environment, thus, any climate changes like heat, cold, dry air or high humidity can turn my harmonious sound into nerve-racking one. There is no doubt that my owner knows all my peculiarities, so when it came to my moving I was confident that I would not be put at risk.
The day when I found out that I was about to be relocated Grandma called a piano moving service. No sooner did she name my model and mention route details than a logistics expert estimated the difficulty of the transportation and gave an exact quote. Judging by my owner’s satisfaction, my relocation would be conducted at an affordable price and all demands would be met.
The last thing that I wanted from heavy furniture movers was to be treated as this cupboard standing next to me. Not only am I antique but I also have very fragile internals which needs to be protected, so any vibration, moisture, dust, dirt, blows and even tiny scratches should be excluded. How relieved I was when the movers started to carefully wrap me. All my prominent parts like legs and edges were covered with plastic wrap whereas strings – with thick paper. The movable parts were removed, these are pedals, a lower lid that protects the pedals and the bottom of the deck, and hammer mechanism. Foam sheets were put between the keyboard and the lid that protect the keys while the latter was secured with adhesive tape. Then I was all covered with polyethylene film in which small holes were cut to grasp me properly while moving.
When I was ready for moving I was slightly lifted. Fortunately, the movers did not use my wheels because they are of no practical use and not designed for actual transporting as they can damage the flooring. Nor did they use the handles on my back as they would not be able to withstand my weight for a long time. After a while, I was carried out of the apartment which was the only home I knew. Though, there was not much time for reminiscing as everything needed to be done in a swift manner. Despite the house being equipped with a freight elevator, I would not fit in it, therefore, the relocation had to be handled by the movers. Undoubtedly, they were skilled professionals with a great experience behind them as they were so adroit at carrying me down the stairs. There were just two of them and remarkably they were of the same height and physical strength which eased the process. Obviously, they worked cooperatively and there was no disagreement in their actions. They used lifting belts and a narrow strap stitched from both ends which fixed the main belts under me preventing them from jumping off. It was good that they did not put me in an inclined position on the steps otherwise the bottom could have been damaged.
All in all, the descent went smoothly and finally I was outside. Even though the movers did not let me stay outside for a long time, it was very thoughtful of my owner to move me in warm weather as I said I am susceptible to huge climate swings. Then I was loaded in the truck with the help of a special platform. Although my surface was already protected by the polyethylene film, a matt was put under one of my sides to avoid any scratches while I was being pushed into the truck. There was a soft upholstery inside it which neutralized any vibrations. More than that, all the way to the new home I was also securely strapped and a driver did not go over the speed limits, so I had nothing to worry about.
The distance appeared to be quite long but in the end I was relocated safe and sound, with no damage done. After I was carefully and slowly moved in the new apartment, one of the movers considerately opened the window to avoid sudden temperature changes. They let me to get used to the microclimate of the living room gradually keeping my lids closed. During next few days I became surrounded with familiar items, some of them as weighty as I am. They all were relocated by the same movers hired by my owner which meant that she was entirely satisfied by their service.
A few weeks later a qualified piano-tuner came but as it turned out I did not need a thorough master tuning, which means that relocation had been conducted properly. For this my sincere gratitude goes to A-1 Auto Transport, Inc. Thank you!
Submitted by Diana Igorevna Petrova
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