Editor’s note: The Virus Diaries is a series in which Mainers talk about how they are affected by the coronavirus outbreak.

Cris Young, left, and Lisa Kleinhandler with their dog, Doogie. The couple moved into a new home on April 1, but they can’t get their possessions from a storage unit in Ohio because of the pandemic. Photo courtesy of Cris Young

Cris Young and her wife, Lisa Kleinhandler, moved to Maine from Youngstown, Ohio, in December in search of their forever home.

“We were definitely moving back to the East Coast,” Young said. “I’m from Boston, she’s from Long Island, New York, and we settled on this area, southeast Maine, because it’s only 90 minutes from Boston, where our son and daughter are.”

Knowing that search might take some time, they rented a furnished place in Wells for the winter, keeping their belongings in storage in Youngstown. Plans were progressing nicely, with a home in the Berwicks picked out, when the coronavirus outbreak accelerated.

“We had all of our arrangements made and crews ready to load and unload from Ohio to here,” said Young, 58. “And then Ohio shut down, and then Maine shut down.

“We can’t get our stuff. Nobody will come out to move my stuff. … We can’t just move it ourselves, because it’s a whole house of furniture there and I definitely need a crew of men to move it for me.”

On April 1, Young and Kleinhandler began relocating to their now home. They’re trying to find furniture and household goods, knowing everything they really needed is stuck in rented storage space.

“We went on to Amazon and bought a mattress in a box and went to Rent-a-Center to get a living room. And even the Rent-a-Center – and God bless them they’re open and allowing us to have furniture – but they’ll only take the furniture to the front porch. You just don’t think of these things. We’re so spoiled as human beings. And this is a tough situation for all of us.

“There’s so many people going through so much worse than I’m going through, but maybe they can laugh at my situation. Listen, I’m in a great spot. I’m were we want to be, back home in New England. I feel blessed and lucky.

“We’re expecting our first grandchild this summer. We love this area and most importantly, we want to say, we’re very thankful to the guy stocking the shelves, or the guy waiting on you at the takeout restaurant, to the firefighters and health care workers, to everyone doing what they’re doing. And to the people who are staying in. We appreciate those who do what they need to do.”

Do you have a story to share about how you are affected by the coronavirus outbreak? Email us at [email protected]

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