Wednesday, August 03, 2005


The apartment I mentioned yesterday? In less than 24 hours we looked at it, applied, and signed the lease. I am boggled at the simplicity of the process, for a change. Moving into my current place two years ago involved all kinds of back and forth. First I filled out all the paperwork and the landlady offered it to me. Then, the day I was supposed to sign the papers, she said it wasn't available after all, that the current residents had changed their minds about leaving. Then, after I frantically resumed the search for a place (having already given notice on my previous place, and having only about a week left in which to find a place), she called me back and re-offered it--but now the rent was higher than she'd stated earlier! Alas, at that down-to-the-wire date, I had no other good options left, so resentfully paid the higher rent anyway.

This time everything came together so beautifully I felt like it must all fall apart at any moment. Surely some monkey wrench would throw the whole thing off!

I have, however, signed the papers and paid a deposit and even received the keys. And the garage remote. (Oh, that's right y'all, this place has a garage, in which we can store camping gear and carpentry tools, and in which occasional carpentry work can be accomplished.) Something could still blow the whole deal, I suppose, but I think the signed papers make that less likely.

My one source of grief is that the apartment isn't located in Ballard. *Sob* After four years of walking down to Turtle Press whenever I needed a paper crafts fix, or breezing down to Epilogue Books for a lazy browsing session, or just walking down to the Locks or to Golden Gardens for a nice quiet stroll... I'll miss it. And oh, I'll miss the girls at Firehouse Coffee, and the cheerful stickers they would plaster to the lid of my coffee in the morning! It seems a bit silly to feel sad about a mere four-mile move, but there it is. At least we'll be pretty close to Carkeek Park; my saddest loss will be the ability to cruise over to Discovery Park in a quick half-hour walk, but I think Carkeek will be within similar walking distance from the new place.

I tend to get really emotional about changes like this; even when the changes are wholly positive, I get preemptive nostalgia for all my familiar routines and scenes. When last I moved, my roommate and I camped out on the living room floor of our emptied apartment on the last night of our lease. We stayed up most of the night talking and sniffling about the good times we'd had there. I'm not sure Mr. Thel will be up for any tearful reminiscing, but for the rest of our lives this apartment will be preserved in our memories as the first place we ever lived together. For more than two years we've cooked dinners, baked bread, battled ants and spiders, viewed three Tours de France, watched the fireworks over Lake Union and Elliott Bay (and had some rather less pleasant fireworks of our own...and survived), squeezed dozens more books into our full shelves (did you know that a KEXP membership gets you 20% off all purchases at Third Place Books--both new and used? Ho ho ho, is that ever going to be handy this year!), made music, love, and popcorn.

I'm not even going to try to tally up how many pizzas Pagliacci has delivered to us.

On the other hand, the new apartment's bedroom window lacks a Sloop Tavern below it. That single fact goes a long way toward evening out the ratio of regret to excitement. Add in the new garage and yard, and the scales are decidedly tipped. After all, we'll still be near all our friends (and, in fact, nearer to some). We'll become regular customers at some other coffee shop, and find new routines and secret pedestrian passageways. Now that we have a yard we can even have a proper hoedown/shindig/barbeque kind of thing. Friday nights will remain Firefly nights for the next two months, and you're all still invited, Internet.

So: onward! Upward! And other motivational words! Hey, somebody call Pagliacci. We're gonna need an Agog Primo, stat.