Plants First, Fish Next

The original intent of this journal was to chronicle the trials and tribulations of the struggling twenty-something, as I searched for love and happiness in the small city-burb of ManchVegas, NH. Now, I'm thirty-something, I've found love in many forms, happiness in even more, and now the struggle is just... well... life. And finding time to do the million and one things I want to do- including writing.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Moving On

After living in my apartment since October, 2004, I'm moving out this spring.

Why?  Well, the neighborhood has never been great.  When Smarty Pants and I were living there together, her car was broken into more than once, and mine was stolen (and eventually found in Cambridge, MA).  There's a lady that lives in the building across the alley who does not take her meds, so in the summer when all the windows are open you can hear her screaming that she's being raped.  She's not.  We called the police the first time we heard her and they confirmed that she's skitzophrenic and often forgets to medicate.  The side street is littered with dog poop and trash.  I've heard children being verbally and physically abused on our streets.  I've witnessed the same children being completely ignored by their parents as they play outside at 11pm.  As I've watched those kids grow up, I see that they are becoming as cruel and stupid as the adults around them.

In my building are at least two questionable men, whom I've named Sketch (Sr.) and Junior Sketch.  Sketch Sr. moved in about 2 years ago, wears a lot of black and camo, sunglasses at night, and used to stand around on the front corner a lot.  A LOT.  Looking, well, sketchy.  I tried to mitigate his sketchiness by saying "Hi," ala Ned Flanders to no avail.  Junior Sketch just moved in to the apartment in the lobby, where he is constantly peeking out the door, and also waiting on the corner in front of the building.  When I pull my car up, he moves to try to get in.  Now, why would you try to get in to a stranger's car?  Unless my car says TAXI on it (which it doesn't), my guess is drugs, prostitution, or both.  Speaking of prostitution, that happens too.  A 40-ish woman with stripper pants, a big bag, standing on the street corner at 10pm... just standing... is not normal.

Oh, and then there was the stabbity.  In October, the night before I left to visit my Dad in PA, a man stabbed another man.  The wounded man ran, fell on my car (which was parked pretty much outside my front door), bled upon it, ran up the ramp in front of the building, then down the street.  I was staying at Face and Mop's the night before, so I wasn't there for the crime, but the entire block was a crime scene when Face brought me home.  My car was swathed with police tape.  We had to get permission to enter my building, and then of course I had to make sure they were done gathering evidence (aka human blood) from my car.  The officers on the scene were laissez-faire about the whole thing, which certainly didn't help me feel more comfortable.

Why didn't I move out earlier?  Because my apartment is BEAUTIFUL.  Well, ok, the kitchen counters are a little meh.  And it needs new carpet.  But it has 12 foot ceilings in the living room and master bed room and 8 foot tall windows.  It's custom painted from when Smarty and I first moved in with warm colors.  The rent is reasonable (though not as cheap as it once was) and the heat is free.  The building is a landmark, as it's a converted Catholic School that was built in the late 1800's.  There's storage, laundry, and off-street parking.  It's 0.9 miles from my home to work.  Emotionally, this is my first home.  It's the first place I made my own; the first place I really settled.

A few pics from the place - excuse the clutter I've been bustling about the last few days:

Still, the decision to move has been made, and while it will be difficult to leave the space, it will be easy to leave the neighborhood.  Where am I going?  Well, I'm likely staying in ManchVegas.  The rents here are good.  The whole reason I'm moving is to get into a better neighborhood, so actually KNOWING the neighborhoods will help.  Ideally I'd like to be in a place with some character, something that's part of a house on a quiet block where I can put my trash and recycling out at the curb, maybe have a balcony or a bit of yard.  And I'm spoiled - I want heat to be included since I've never had to budget for it.

My lease is up April 1st.  I can stay on as a tenant at will (for an extra fee, of course) for as long as I want; I have to give 30 days notice before I vacate.  I'm looking to see if there's anything for April 1st that I'd want, but I'm happy to move May 1st too.  Part of the issue is that I'm SO freaking busy in March that I have no idea when to look for apartments.  Also, after living in a place for 5 1/2 years, there's a lot of purging and packing to do.  Finally, I have to paint everything white again, which is stupid, as it looks awesome and they could totally rent it out as-is.  But they already told me they'll charge $200/wall to paint, and I'd rather keep my $1000+, thank-you-very-much.

So, who wants to join the painting party?  Food, drink, and painting supplies provided by the lovely host, labor and music provided by you.  Anybody?  hello?

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3 Comments:

  • At 11:35 AM , Blogger Suz said...

    I'm not the best painter but having moved A BUNCH I know that we have to start with primer and then actually paint. UGH. Let me know when I'll come up and get rollin'.

     
  • At 11:19 AM , Blogger Heather said...

    Do you have my parents' number? If you're into staying in a better part of the same hood (next door or across the street from me on Hanover), Jim is really an excellent landlord who cares about his tenants, will give you a good deal, and you have your own parking space. Plus, it would be wicked wicked convenient for me to visit you when I'm home:)

     
  • At 1:48 PM , Blogger Kristin Marie said...

    I'll help paint!

     

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