Sunday, April 19, 2009

The search for a home continues: Old Thoughts & New Horizons

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When I was younger, I often prayed to God for answers.  In fact, my big thing was "asking for a sign".  (And I took tumbles down the steps, finding a quarter or a long lost sock as valid responses.) 

It's been a long time since I've looked to God to answer my questions, but the longer I continue to live here, the more signs I seem to find that it's time to move--both figuratively AND literally.

Here's a good one:  this past Thursday morning, I was shaving &  heard a loud BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! coming from the hallway outside my apartment.  Did I investigate?  No, I was running late & didn't want to miss my bus, someone in the office was bringing in bagels today & I wanted one!  I finish dressing, grab my bag & open the door. 

I am immediately greeted by six men wearing heavy black vests with government seals on the front and DEA on their caps.  They're lined up on the wall opposite my apartment, all holding serious looking weapons.  "Hello..." the first one says to me very softly.  “Uh… hello” I respond.  He smiles and says "you probably want to get out of the way as soon as possible."  I say "Oh... okay" and begin fiddling with my key in the lock.  I know they're all watching me.  "Oh I um, forgot something, never mind" and I go back into my apartment.  I barely shut my door when I hear "POLICE OPEN UP!!"  CRAAAACK!!  (They busted down my neighbors door.)

I waited a few minutes for the noise to die down before opening my door again--I saw my neighbor's door splintered off it's hinges, with him sitting on the floor in his underwear & not looking very happy as a couple of those guys were ripping his place apart, slashing sofa cushions & dumping various items into the center of the room.  He saw me watching & I gave him a sympathetic glance before making a beeline for the lobby.

After I got to the office (and got that bagel) I told everyone what happened, emailed my sisters & then wondered the rest of the day if I'd come home that night to find my own place ransacked.  (It wasn't; I encountered a repairman and a young woman who informed me she was my neighbor's sister.  She told me "he's going to be gone a couple days but he's okay.")   Sister, it's not him I'm worried about!

Anyway, the signs continue:  Friday night I take a basket of clothes to the laundry room in my building's basement--only to be greeted with a piece of white cardboard taped above the washer.  Someone drew a big frownie-face on it & wrote "4/14/09 Please fix me, I'm broke!"  Underneath that is written "Did you call Lobos Mgmt?"  and underneath that was written "Get f-cked!")       

The washer is still broken; and that sign is still there.  embarassed

timberidge For real turn-key living, come to Timberidge  

I know, I know.  In my last blog it was "Come to the Summit".  But I also pointed out my reservations about the place--the units were fairly old, and pretty much resembled my apartment, give or take an extra bedroom or closet. 

And I know this sounds lazy, but I wasn't looking forward to all the renovations I'd have to do--stripping wallpaper, new appliances, painting, new flooring, carpeting, light fixtures, etc. 

I think it was my friend Julie Darling who gave me the final push--I was going over the pros & cons with her of buying an older condo and remaining in my neighborhood (only 10 minutes from downtown) or making a real move to something more modern.  (The trouble is, the newer it is, the farther from the city it gets.  I'm talking RURAL.)  

darl015

 

Julie (right) enjoying her life in the suburbs...

She said "If I was going to go to all the trouble & expense of buying property and moving, I'd want it to be a step up.  It looks like you're trading one concrete apartment for another."

 

That's when I began to give serious consideration to living outside the box, so to speak; and while I STILL don't want a full-blown house (and all the work that goes with it), I began looking at available townhomes.

1311d

 1311b

1311e                                                          

Hardwood maple flooring, ceramic tile, 2 bedrooms and 1 1/2 baths; I'd have my own washer & dryer & even my own garage!

I've already been in talks with the agent about this one, and I'm planning to see it with my sister Shawn very soon.   Compared to the run-down condos I've been shown, it looks like Taj Mahal--I fell in love with it the moment I saw the photos.  It even comes with a light-rail platform only steps from my front door, with a 45 minute ride to the office.  

But I can forget walking to any supermarket, bank, drugstore, pizzeria, dentist, barber... I have all that here, and that's what is holding me back.

Well, here's hoping I like what I see in the days ahead.  (And if anyone wants to throw a sign or two more my way...I'll be watching.)

                    indian_warrior_02

FOLLOW UP:   My sister Shawn & I spent a lovely Saturday afternoon looking at the best photographed townhomes ever seen.  I say that because the pictures above were pretty misleading, the livingroom wasn’t even wide enough to accommodate a real sofa! 

Also, it helped me to realize that I’m just too accustomed to having things within walking distance.  The search continues...

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