I’ve been semi-idly (is there any other way?) looking around for a different place to live. The dogs next door are driving me crazy (and have recently been joined by a dog across the street who squeals and whimpers all day), and the BART station of death is getting to be a little scarier than I can handle, with three deaths in as many months. Not to mention having the GPS stolen out of my car, and, oh yeah, the murders of four cops last week. I think I deserve to live somewhere a little more pretty and a little less hazardous.
I’m thinking of moving to Petaluma. It’s a pretty town – it starred in American Graffiti and Peggy Sue Got Married – and a historic one, with a charmingly preserved downtown. My mother used to live there, so I got to know it and like it.
Reading the housing ads, I’ve been both shocked and dismayed by how many places don’t allow pets. If you’re single, these landlords are basically saying you are not entitled to any companionship. No purring cat or faithful dog to lower your blood pressure or take the edge off the horrors of life. Nope. You must sit alone in your clean, sterile environment, and God forbid your shoes should mark up the kitchen tiles. However, it’s perfectly OK to have kids merrily crayon on the walls and wreak other puerile havoc. That’s just fine.
So finding a place that’s nice and affordable and will let me live with my beloved girls is a challenge. I’ve seen three houses so far that were unsuitable for various reasons:
- Red house: Cute, but even less counter space and tinier kitchen than I have now. Trailer right next door, only feet away, on one side, and on the other, a garage that is being converted to housing for an as-yet undetermined tenant. Add in the steep dirt road that would be mud in the winter and that’s a no.
- White house: What’s that humming coming from the barn across the driveway from the house? Oh, it’s a sausage factory? And that house right behind is the landlord’s? Wow, look at that fake wood panelling and particle board doors and acoustic tile ceilings!
- The Doll House: Charming, but teeny. Doubtful that I could fit bed and bed side tables into bedroom, or couch and chair in living room. House flush with sidewalk, and no back yard at all. This is California – you need some outdoor living space.
I have another one to look at this week that looks promising. I’ll keep you posted.