Category Archives: apartments

Apartments and me

The apartment saga has just gotten silly. The only apartments left to rent cost in the area of $1100+ and are way outside my means. The difficulty in renting is, of course, my four cats. People say two are okay, but four is too many. How do they know that? The worst I can say about having four (other than the expense) is that four cats  chasing one fly are funnier than only two.

But I got some strangely positive news this past week, and not something I ever expected. I am now sufficiently poor that I qualify for subsidized senior housing. Unfortunately, there’s an 18-36 month wait, depending on which facility I want to enter. There are some that are fantastic, but they’re of course the longer wait. And I can’t find it in me to hope that the older persons fail enough to need to go into higher care facilities. So I sit and wait.

Of course, the problem with being this poor is that any success if and when I ever publish may make me ineligible for the subsidized housing. Every silver lining has a touch of gray! Publication of anything is off until the end of the summer at the earliest. I am currently finishing an unrelated book to the one I’ve been touting, but I am also (don’t faint) actually starting to rewrite Fantastical Times. So who knows? I may publish next fall, and I may not.

Apartments and books and other things.

I found another apartment that I really like and saw it last Wednesday. The landlord and I had a long talk in which I was totally honest with him. First, I told him that my current landlord is making scurrilous comments about me, my cats, and our respective cleanliness. His comments have cost me two apartments, but this one is in many respects the best. So then I told the landlord that I had 4 cats, which is true. He blanched. I then did my best to settle his concerns, but knew it was a stretch. We had a very nice conversation, and I left with minimal hope. He kept refreshing his ad on Craig’s List to bring it closer to the front, so I emailed him and indicated that I would give a nonrefundable deposit for the cats. Not having heard anything, I called him on Monday, and he indicated that he had not rejected me as a tenant, but wanted to show it for a few more days. I am now hedging my bets.

I go to look at two more apartments this week by Saturday. If one of those comes through, I will give him one more chance, and then go with the bird in the hand. Assuming I can stand one of the apartments.

Books are also problematic. I was planning to publish my book Fantastical Trips very soon. I have had a change of heart. It is not up to snuff. There may still be a story there, but this is not the writing with which to tell it. I had been letting it sit this month, planning on workshopping it one last time the first week in June. During the first couple of weeks of this month, I have been happily pottering away at another story I started last September. It had about 60 thousand words in it, and I wondered if it could be wrestled into something. I reread it, and immediately wrote the next 2500 words in the story. It is a much better written tale than Fantastical Trips, with better characterizations, better action, and a more devious plot. It needs work, but I will finish it in the next two weeks. I will go back, add more description, and send it off to beta readers. I have therefore cancelled the workshop on Fantastical Trips, and put it away. For how long? No idea. My heart says it’s dead, but my head says I can resurrect it.

Therefore, in the next month or so, I may have to change the complete look of this blog. The working title of the current WIP is Wandering Ways, which is descriptive of the story, but not a very exciting title. This is something I will have to think on, especially in redesigning the blog. But I have determined one thing from all of this. I want to write. I am learning the craft slowly. I cannot rush to publication with an inadequate piece of work, just for the sake of being a published author. But I also have to have faith that the stories I tell will find a home somewhere. I just hope it’s not in short stories!

But I must be mindful of one thing. I am now a month to month tenant in my current apartment. The landlord (the guy who lies about me) can evict me without cause with sixty days notice. It is a sword hanging over me.

Didn’t get the apartment!

The apartment I last wrote about also did not come through. It appears my current landlord is giving me bad reviews, I suspect in an effort to keep me. But this hardly seems fair, does it? He tells me that all he says is that my rent has always been paid on time, and that there have been no complaints against me. What do you think? This is the second apartment I have lost in two weeks. And both the new landlords had my current landlord’s phone number. Is it as fishy to you as it is to me?

I Found an Apartment!!!

I will be moving the first week of june to a lovely apartment with two major drawbacks and so many good points that they outweigh the bad. There is no parking and no laundry. BUT you should see the storage in this apartment. What is the biggest complaint about small apartments? No place to put anything. This is a very high ceilinged apartment. Think of your average kitchen with cupboards on the bottom and cupboards above the counters. Imagine a second tier of cupboards above the first above the counters. Yup, I have that much storage in the kitchen.

In the bedroom, I looked in the closet and didn’t see a dowel for holding hanging clothes. WTF? The landlord asked me to look to my left (my natural political bent) and there it was, front to back. It is as long as the bar in my current closet. What it gives is the floor room for my two dressers, and two lovely shelves above the dressers for sweaters to stay fluffy. The shelves will even allow me to rotate out the long sleeved shirts for summer, and the t-shirts for winter.

But wait, there’s more. There’s an opening further along the wall into an odd shaped closet, L-shaped in fact. The bottom bar of the L goes under the staircase outside the apartment, so that it is low ceilinged. But there is room in that closet for a number of the large plastic bins one can buy at discount stores all over the country. I can get organized! I can find a home for miscellaneous stuff I’m not ready to get rid of yet.¬† I have a place to put cat boxes!

I intend to move on June 5, so I may be incommunicado for a few days around then. And the landlord is cool with four cats! I’m in heaven.

Apartment Hunting Redux

The saga of looking for a new apartment continues. The rub, as I fully expected, is my four cats. My current landlord allows them, so I may be stuck for another year or two, and I may find myself away at the Burlington Writers Workshop space on Church Street much of the time if a horde of college students arrive downstairs. But the hunt is still on and who knows what lurks in the offing?

I’ve put feelers out for a couple of studio (or efficiency) apartments but they are not my first choice. One thing I realized, looking at the small apartment that I wanted but did not get, was how much junk I have and how hard it would be to fit it into a small space. I was pleasantly surprised to find on Friday a one bedroom with study that was almost within my means. The fact that it also had a washer and dryer did much to obviate the cost, but the clincher was that heat is included. As I am sure you can understand, living in the north country makes that a Big Deal. Unfortunately, there were over forty of us responding, and I am not holding my breath.

But now, I have seen a much better bargain. A place that would save me $125 a month in rent, and over double the size of my current apartment, with a washer and dryer to be shared with the homeowners and an in-ground backyard pool, right outside the front door of the apartment. I am sure the competition will be fierce, but I will try to be as charming as I can, and maybe I’ll get lucky. Or, as a friend said about all the others, they were not meant to be. Maybe this one is.

Apartment hunting

Yes, I’m apartment hunting, even though I have lived in my current apartment for only 13 months. My landlord is evicting the 75 year old woman from the downstairs apartment and is planning on renting to college students after rehabbing the place. I have two issues with this. First, I have no desire to spend the summer above a construction site. I am a busy writer, and would find the noise unbearable. Second, the idea of three college students under me chills me to the marrow. I moved into this apartment in part to get away from the student ghetto in which I was living. (A very secondary reason. The primary reason was to get away from a landlord who, although obligated, did not clear the ice from the walkway for the full three months following my fall on the ice that resulted in a badly broken arm.)

I have found what looks to be a wonderful place, a bit smaller than I would like, but I can afford to downsize again. I make this determination from looking at the pictures of the apartment. I will not see it until tomorrow night. I have communicated with the landlord, who allows cats in his apartments (yeah!) and who thinks the apartment will go fast. This may be wishful thinking on his part, but the location and quality of the apartment lead me to believe otherwise. He says the applicant who first gets him a deposit check wins. Needless to say, I have that check squirreled away in my pocketbook as I write. He requires a bank check or a money order, and i have such a check.

To the extent possible I have dotted all my “i”s and crossed all my “t”s. Now I just have to hope. I am eager not only for the location but also for the large kitchen with the new fridge and stove, with room for a table. Heaven on earth! Wish me luck!