Friday, January 3, 2014

In which 2014 pulls the bait and switch

Rainbow House by Collage Al Infinito By Mariano Peccinett

Last month we put down a deposit on a third-story open-floor-plan apartment.  It was pretty nice, and we liked that it had a large bathroom and a small kitchen and yet because of the open floor plan we could put our HUGEASS farmhouse kitchen table just about anywhere.  That kitchen table is not this one, but it's similar, except maybe a bit bigger, because we used to live near a World Market, and those places are TRAPS.  Also, we had just bought a house with a really nice dining room that I still miss horribly because it was wonderful and I decorated it with this wallpaper and it was basically the room I gussied up like a fine tramp, because I loved her, and I guess that means I was my dining room's pimp?


We ended up with this bigass farmhouse table, and once we moved into this 500sqft place, down from our 1517sqft place, it became the size of our entire kitchen.  Everywhere we looked this time around, we had to find someplace that had space for this shabby-chic-behemoth.  I curse the day I ever liked the Pottery Barn look.  NEVER AGAIN.  From now on, my taste is going to land firmly in the "can it fit in a breadbox?" camp.  But alas, this mistake I have to live with, because I love that table, and I'm not going to sell it, that table is a part of our family!


We put down money on an apartment that met not only the impossible table criteria ("ITC"), but also passed the "we have 2 medium-sized dogs which we got when we were homeowners not thinking we'd have to apply for an apartment ever again ha ha we are stupid*" test, then "fits within our budget" test, and the "is in a neighborhood we can live with" test.  It only took us a month and a half to find the place since the rental market in this non-college town is abysmal, and worse in winter.  But we did it.  We found it, and we plunked down the very last bit of cash we had on it, making us broke as all get-out for the holidays (I created a spreadsheet of all our medical expenses for the year, and I am SO PSYCHED for taxes this year because OH YES we spent waaaaaay more than 7.5% of our AGI, let me tell you; but it is also why we have been so totally broke for so long), but our lease here is ending soon, and we didn't really have much of a choice.

So yesterday, we naturally were notified that the owner of the building was pulling the rental and was removing it from the market, because they want to sell the property.  GREAT.  BUT.  The property management company had one other property they hadn't posted on Craigslist yet, and would let us see today if we wanted to swap our first deposit over to that one.  It was $25 less a month, and in the better neighborhood we had originally wanted, but in which we had been unsuccessful in finding anything that would allow dogs (we literally resorted to driving down every street looking for any stray for-rent signs that hadn't been posted to Craigslist).  It sounded too good to be true.

Needless to say, I was a bit concerned that if this replacement place sucked, we basically had four weeks to find something that would suit all of our requirements (since we'd already given notice to our current property managers that we wouldn't be renewing).  Given that it took us longer than that the first time, I was skeptical.  However, as it turns out, this place is......actually kind of better than the first apartment.  It's a duplex, it's within walking distance of the little village area we like (including a place that serves, exclusively, ice cream, soup, and grilled cheese oh my god I mean heaven).

So, tentatively, 2014, thanks for not totally being evil.  At least so far.  Sometimes it's nice to be pleasantly surprised at how things go.  Often I assume the worst is going to happen, and it doesn't, and it does me good sometimes to be reminded of that.  One of my weaknesses (and oh, there are many) is my critical nature, both of myself and of situations that arise (in that, welp, this has taken a turn for the worse, so it's probably going to get worse before it gets better, so let's buckle in).  In some ways, this has helped me because hey, I anticipate and prepare for less than great news, but in a lot of ways, it can be kind of a downer, because I go into stressful situations assuming that things will be as hard as possible, so that if they are, I experience the difficulty twice, first by anticipating, then by actually experiencing it.  It's nice to be reminded that sometimes everything turns out totally fine in a totally quick turnaround.  And that the universe is not hell-bent on making my life difficult.  Although I will admit, it makes for good writing fodder.  So thanks, universe?

P.S. anybody want to come over for dinner?  We have this table that can seat all the Von Trapps...

P.P.S. Man I hate renting again.

*Neville Longbottom, my Corgi, is currently sleeping on the couch next to me, and running with his little stumpy paws in his dreams.  Dammit dog, you and our Aussie make it so difficult to find a place to live (you'd think Corgis would be "small dogs" but he's about 30 pounds -- they're stocky) but then I lounge on the couch and you run in your sleep and it's just so adorable, I can't help but be happy I have you around.  Dogs.  Totally stupid, totally wonderful.  Kind of like farmhouse tables.


  1. So pleased to hear that 2014 has proven unexpectedly awesome already! I do hope that it continues in that vain!

    We have a smiliar problem with our king size bed, which was purchased on a whim when massively reduced in one of those can't-pass-it-up moments. It is awesome and beautiful and comfortable and I would work from it if I could...But it limits the possibilities when flat hunting, particularly here in the UK where everything is teeny tiny. Sigh.

  2. PS. I would LOVE to come over for dinner, especially if the actual Von Trapps will be there.