September 08, 2003
Beautiful Day Strikes Philadelphia

Al AIMed me this morning to say, "You heard it here first: It's a beautiful day in Philadelphia." Yes, this is news to my husband, who's been griping about the heat, humidity, rain, etc. for the past couple weeks. Heck, it might even be news to long-time Philadelphians, who suffered a cruel, snowbound winter followed immediately by a brutally hot and humid summer. (My sources indicate that there was no spring to speak of.)

I'm in Northern California still, where beautiful days are the norm, and the only things we have to gripe about between May and October are occasional heat waves and morning fog, so I have yet to get to the point where a beautiful day is ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY, IMMEDIATELY, for my mental health. That's not to say that I take beautiful days for granted, however; I welcome each and every one with, "it's another beautiful day in Calfornia!" when I draw back the curtains in the morning.

And as if being able to remain in California into September was not enough, it has the added bonus of putting me in Philly *after August*. That means I get to miss Humidity Hell, and I will arrive to greet my favorite season, fall. Unlike Al, who's had to sweat through the remaining days of an east coast summer, I'll get pumpkins and cider and the smell of dry leaves, and warm, dry days and cool, crisp nights to ease my transition. (That is, if it doesn't rain.)

I will certainly miss the warm, fog-free days of October in the Bay Area, but I can't wait for the *real* fall of the east coast. Bring on Halloween! Posted by Lori at 01:38 PM | Permalink

September 13, 2003
A New Life

We put an offer on a house in Philadelphia today. I don't want to say much about it here yet, for fear of jinxing it, but we're very excited.

I'm really glad I came out for this little house-hunting trip prior to the move (especially as it ended in us making an offer), but now that I'm here, I wish I could stay. I know that there's a bunch of stuff yet to be done in California, and Annie to retrieve, but I was just starting to get used to the idea of living in Philly. At first it felt like some weird vacation, but now I get it: this is home.

At the same time, I am eager to return to California because I miss Annie terribly and am nervous that *she* is nervous. She didn't seem to cope well at all with my last week at work, which involved me leaving the house between 8 and 9 each morning and not returning until between 10pm and 1am, and now I've abandoned her again. I have a feeling she's not going to be too excited about me returning to take her to the vet on Monday, and then on a scary plane ride on Saturday... Hopefully she'll be able to adapt to the apartment, and then again to the new house (which, if we get it, we'll probably move into in November).

It is with these mixed emotions—joy, excitement, worry, confusion—sore feet, and a strong desire for sleep that I box up my old life and unpack my new one. I hope it all works out.

Posted by Lori at 08:47 PM | Permalink
September 15, 2003
Cherry Is So Very Cheery

We got the house!!

Al and I are really excited: Our offer on the house in Philly has been accepted, and we'll become residents of Cherry Street in November. The house is in the Logan Square neighborhood—one we hadn't really been looking in until we saw this house. We really like it, though: it's quieter than our favorite neighborhood, Rittenhouse Square; it's much more convenient to the Whole Foods (.5 mi away); it's two blocks from the Franklin Institute (a science/discovery museum); and it's walking distance to Al's work (.8 mi). The houses in Logan Square are also much more affordable than in Rittenhouse, and we still got our tree-lined street. What more could we ask for? Oh, did I mention that a brand new Trader Joe's just opened three blocks away?

Posted by Lori at 12:41 PM | Comments (1) | Permalink
September 24, 2003
Inspector Gabby

We got the house inspected as part of the escrow process on Monday. The inspector was nice, and he gave us a lot of good information—but he seriously tried both Al's and my patience by burying that good information in mounds and mounds of useless jabber. During a long and tedious speech about how to run the heat pump efficiently, I had to interrupt him to suggest that he assume a modicum of intelligence on our parts. Al has a degree in mechanical engineering, for pete's sake—he knows how a heat pump works!

I think I could have filtered through most of the endless chatter to pick out the important bits (and tune out the rest), but it just made Al MAD. Rather than try to arbitrate, I gave my attention to the kitchen contractor, who we had come at the same time to minimize the disruption to the current owners. I know, it was probably wimpy of me to abandon Al to Mr. Never Shuts Up, but I justified it by reasoning that the kitchen contractor needed some attention too. He was so quiet, competent, and gentle that the inspector could easily have overshadowed him, and there were questions that needed to be asked on both sides.

Two hours later we were all done; we had the inspection report, a ballpark idea of how much it would cost to remodel the kitchen and some specific ideas about how we wanted to do it, and an even higher regard for the house. We met another neighbor on the way out (the listing agent lives a block away and sold many of the houses on the street, so she knows everyone), and now I'm counting the days until we can move in!

Posted by Lori at 07:04 AM | Permalink