It’s hard to believe I made that last post four months ago. Since then:
We sold the house.
We bought a house.
We moved out.
We moved in.
And now we’re remodeling, but that’s another topic altogether.
While we didn’t get quite the offer we were looking for, it was a fair one. Better yet, it came from people we LIKED. Which had some pros and cons to it during further negotiations, but it all worked out. The weekend after accepting the offer, we hauled ass to Texas to look for a house. Much like the previous trip, we didn’t find anything that suited us, and began the drive home moderately depressed and drawing up Plans B and C.
A wonderful surprise was waiting in our email when we arrived – a 1985 brick home on 16 wooded acres – it had everything: a shop, a barn, TWO ponds…even a screened porch. We put in an offer based on photos taken by the owner and our agent. The only hang-up was the owners would make their best efforts to be out by the 31st – and we closed in San Diego on the 12th. We’d deal.
Move and Keep Moving
Now that we were in escrow, the tempo picked up considerably. We had to pack up what we thought was already pared down and fit it all into one P.O.D. and three vehicles – only one towing a trailer.
Here’s the P.O.D:
The trailer, final version:
And if you squint at this picture, you can see just above the cab of the work truck in front, a teeny slice of the blue tarp as we head into a dust storm in Arizona:
Full disclosure: the gas gauge on the truck towing the trailer doesn’t work. Looking back on it now, we’re lucky we only ran out of fuel twice. Once in Road Forks, NM and the next in Junction, TX.
And no, it WASN’T funny then.
But when we finally arrived at our new property in Burton? We. were. thrilled. The street it’s on is bridged-over intermittently by oaks and other trees. We turned into the drive in a state of awe. Some trees were draped with Spanish moss, and unlike every other property we’d seen in Texas, the photos actually didn’t do it justice. (Seriously. The real estate agents out here make the Playboy photo artists look like amateurs.)
The owners were gracious enough to let us store a lot of stuff inside AND out, thereby freeing us to become vagabonds for the days before the closing. After about a week of paper shuffling and signing, we were freed up enough to head out for the east coast to visit friends in Boone, NC, Atlanta, GA (Kaaate-y!) and Jacksonville, FL. In a cost-saving move, we bought a 22’ Travel Trailer to cut down on the hunts for dog-friendly hotels.
Per the paperwork, we closed escrow on the new house on the 31st, but weren’t able to move all of our stuff in until November 2nd. Staying a couple of extra days at the local RV park (NOT the one that’s clothing optional – yes, there is one) wasn’t a hardship. One of our biggest concerns about all this property was how would the dogs respond to no real boundaries save an electric cattle fence? Pretty well, it turns out.
The Big Dog, who gave us a heart attack at a rest stop in Tennessee when after the leash broke he bolted UP the off ramp towards traffic, actually listens quite well when he’s not being chased. The Girly-Dog on the other hand, is much more prone to be led by the nose – all those smells! They’ve both experienced the electrified cattle fence, and rightfully so, they respect it.
Oh! Did I mention we have cows?
My pal Bob has suggested their names be Sid and Nancy, I just can’t decide which one’s Sid. Perhaps the red one as she’s tricky and tends to taunt the Big Dog.
We haven’t got everything put away yet, not even close, so it doesn’t quite feel like “home” yet. We’ve got a bed set up, a makeshift living room, TV, and the Internets, and as of last Friday my connection to work is finally(!) up and running. The basics are taken care of. The house will take some work to bring it up to date, but we’ll most likely have the office and the master done by the end of the year. The rest will get done as time allows.
I can’t begin to describe much less discover all the things I like about this place. Sitting out on the deck at night, the ambient sounds awe me. There’s a constant trilling that’s interspersed with the sound of crickets. When the leaves rustle the odds are even it’s either the cows shuffling near the fence, or frogs in search of whatever it is they’re searching for so far from the pond. I hear hoot owls, cows other than ours, donkeys, roosters, and coyotes. Some nights I hear the squirrels plotting their antics from the trees. If I honestly didn’t know better, I’d think the soundtrack was a creation by Uncle Walt himself. I think we’re going to like it here.