m is no longer for moving. m is for moved. i've been on the east coast for almost nine whole days and have spent a fair portion of each one of those days missing san francisco. luckily i have a whole host of things going on in my life to be excited about and
a trip back to sf at the end of the month to look forward to.
my last week in san francisco was, as some might have predicted, a little bit of a whirlwind. i packed and packed and packed - and donated bags and bags of stuff to goodwill - and the end never seemed to get closer. but after one last massive trip to the post office with my last 11 boxes of belongings (notice i say "last" 11 - that would indicate that there were several boxes that preceeded these 11. my parents, having seen the size of my future nyc apartment (yes, i got an apartment! more on that later!) are less than thrilled about the prospect of spending the next year with these boxes for company), i was packed and ready to go a whole 24 HOURS before my flight. this should be considered somewhat miraculous.
i spent my first three days back on the right coast acclimating (sort of) to the heat and humidity. i always forget how miserable east coast summers can be. i'm sort of adjusted, but have been getting funny looks from my parents when i take a couple of extra layers with me, you know, just in case the fog rolls in and the temperature drops 15 degrees. oh wait. that's NEVER going to happen.
after three days of rest and recuperation, i headed into nyc to begin the apartment hunting process. i've done my fair share of apartment hunting, but only in san francisco, so this was my first foray into the nyc real estate zoo. to make matters more complicated, my future roomie, is traveling in the wilds of syria right now.
what i learned on my apartment hunt:
1. real estate brokers are really, really expensive
2. real estate brokers make the whole apartment hunting process way, way less painful than it would otherwise be
i met ron, my trusty real estate dude, at around 3p on thursday. we spent 30 or 40 minutes going over my needs (cheap. cheap. cheap.) and then he sent me out with trusty real estate assistant rob to actually see some apartments.
there are no words to describe the first two apartments that i saw with rob (also, since two other real estate brokers showed me these apartments, they are apparently the only 2 two bedroom apartments for $2000 available in this stretch of manhattan). dank, dirty, and disgusting are three that come to mind. all for the bargain basement price of $2010. yes, that's real. rob the real estate assistant was able to look at me with a straight face and tell me that i should be excited about the prospect of paying $1005 a month for a bedroom in which i would be lucky to squeeze half of a twin bed.
i started getting nervous.
we had a brief break before our next appointment, so we separated and at the appointed time, i made my way over to harlem. bring on harlem. the block that the apartment is on is a really pretty tree-lined stretch of urban oasis with new townhouses on both sides. i started to get excited.
the owner, guy, let us into the apartment and within two steps, i knew i wanted it. it's on the third floor of a three-story townhouse and is light-filled, and spacious, and new, and has pretty floors, and is clean. and CHEAP! i wanted it. i wantedwantedwanted it. one teensy, tinsy little problem. my roommate was in syria with no reliable method of communication.
well, my friends, that is what we call a dilemma. so i did what i could. i called my roommate's mom. by the time we finally connected, i was a few beers into my night and had to run out of the extremely loud bar that i was in, all the while screaming "hold on, mrs. s., hold on!" long story short, mrs. s said to do what i thought was best. i slept on it, decided i needed back-up, called my parents, they drove in, and we made a group decision to just go for it. submitted an application and two hours later found out that i got the apartment! so exciting.
i don't have pictures of the inside yet, but here's one of the outside. we have the top floor, those four windows:
and here's one of our block:
and two of lenox avenue, which is just at the end of our block:
that last one has my mom in it, in case you couldn't tell.
i went in yesterday to sign the lease and should have the keys by friday. more pictures of the inside to follow soon.
my one small piece of knitting news. after a few, frantic days during which i thought that the postal service had lost my entire stash, both boxes showed up on my parents' doorstep. phew.