The adventure begins

My Personal Relocation Journey

People ask, “Do you have a personal relocation journey?”  And yes, I do…

Moving. It’s not just about packing boxes and forwarding mail. It’s about the adventures, mishaps, and memories that profoundly shape our lives. As a realtor in London and Southwestern Ontario, I’ve seen my fair share of moving stories, but none quite as personal as my own relocation adventure from Kelowna, British Columbia, to Ontario in 2008.

The Decision to Move

It all started with a decision to pack up our lives and head east. We sold what we could, keeping only what was necessary (still a lot) or irreplaceable by holding garage sales and online classifieds.  Our preparations even attracted the attention of celebrity radio and TV personality Tarzan Dan Freeman, who stopped by to purchase some of our furniture. Despite the excitement, the process was overwhelming. My parents lent their support for the final push, with my father set to drive the moving truck across the continent with me. I am so grateful for his willingness to help this somewhat adventurous woman.

A Rocky Start

Our journey began with a hiccup—after packing the truck and thinking we were ready to hit the road…and before we even left town we realized that our moving van was broken and not safe for our trip. Scrambling to transfer our belongings to a new truck, we eventually hit the road, embarking on a route through the upper part of the U.S. to save time (12 full hours to be exact). The beauty of Washington State, the rugged Bad Lands of North Dakota, and the vast landscapes of Montana framed our journey. However, the constant worry about my possessions and the fear of unforeseen complications pushed us to drive nearly non-stop, leading to exhaustion.

Tarzan Dan Freeman and Dania Parker-Smith standing at a garage sale.

Moments of Relief and Mishaps

In Fargo, North Dakota, we finally paused after my father’s plea for rest and hit up Walmart to buy slip-on sandals for my swollen feet. The next morning, our journey resumed with lighter moments, including an impromptu visit to a museum in Pepin, Wisconsin, the birthplace of Laura Ingles Wilder, author of “Little House on the Prairie.” However, our adventure wasn’t without its mishaps. While we were in Pepin, I accidentally locked the keys to the moving truck’s box in my car.   This added an unexpected detour to a locksmith, where we had to prove our belongings and ownership to the locksmith.

(left) Radio and Much Music Personality Tarzan Dan stopped by at my moving sale


Navigating Challenges

Our strategy to traverse Chicago in the dead of night to avoid traffic backfired when the GPS led us into less desirable areas, heightening our anxiety. My father’s adherence to the law, even in tense moments, and our collective concern for our safety were palpable. Yet, we managed to navigate back to the freeway, breathing sighs of relief as we continued our journey to Canada.

A Joyous Arrival

Crossing into Canada on Canada Day, the final leg of our journey felt celebratory. Despite the journey’s exhaustion and toll, arriving at our new home was a moment of pure joy. Our relocation adventure, spanning 3,904 km and four days, ended with fireworks and warm welcomes from new neighbours.

Embracing New Beginnings

Sixteen years later, I know that relocation is more than a physical move; it’s an emotional and transformative experience. My journey to Ontario was filled with challenges, surprises, and invaluable lessons. As a realtor, I understand the complexities and emotions involved in moving. Whether you’re relocating thousands of miles or just around the corner in London or Southwest Ontario, my experiences have equipped me to guide you through your own journey with empathy, expertise, and understanding.

To all my clients embarking on this life-changing adventure, know that I am here to support you every step of the way. Your trust in me to help navigate your move is deeply appreciated. Together, we’ll make your transition as smooth and memorable as possible. Welcome to your new beginning, and thank you for allowing me to join your journey. 

If you are reading this and preparing for a relocation, please reach out for support.  I am ready and prepared to help you navigate the world of relocation.  


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