Here we go again

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March 8, 2012 by 8junebugs

We’re 13 days out from the end of our first back-to-California lease. This has been a serviceable first apartment for us — the Allegro was a great location from which to get our bearings and a neat enough fit for our immediate needs upon arrival.

But we’re SO READY to move into a two-bedroom. Two grown-ass people and a dog can live in a one-bedroom for a while, but when both people need work space in the home as well as living space, it gets old preeeetty fast.

A colleague of mine just told me they turned their master bedroom into the office and use in the smaller room for a bedroom. “I just sleep in there,” she said. “Who cares how big it is?” Fair question. Kathleen of &Kathleen (and now of Braid Creative & Consulting) did the same for her home office HQ.

I also underestimated, a year ago today, just how much I’d miss having a balcony…although I’m not sure I’d have wanted one in our current location anyway. We learned soon enough that our only windows are right on the path of least resistance for the semis that stock the Warehouse District, and the noise, vibration, and obscene level of dusty grit probably would’ve kept me indoors much of the time anyway. But I like to have the option, you know? The opportunity to step outside without really going outside, you might say.

So, yay! Our new place has a balcony. There’s also ample storage, an in-unit washer and dryer, and the pool + hot tub + fitness center combination we’d expect to get if we moved back over the hills to Pleasanton. And room to entertain…ye GODS, I miss having the space to entertain properly. There’s so much counter space in the kitchen that I’ve been thinking about finally getting a pasta roller…

We’re also thrilled (and I never thought I’d say this) to be switching back to Comcast. The Allegro had some sort of contract with DirecTV through a third party — Consolidated Smart Systems — that has (a) the most consistently terrible Yelp reviews I’ve ever seen, and (b) some questionable selling/billing practices. We signed up for 12 months, our signed receipt says we signed up for 12 months, our billing indicates we got 12-month pricing with some discounts, but CSS signed us up for 24 months with DirecTV, so…whaaaaa? Ugh, I can’t wait to get back to the simple, straightforward difficulty of calling Comcast to complain every time a promo runs out and jacks up my bill.

We made a trade in deciding on this place. The rent is closer to market rate than I would normally like, but the process was also much easier than if we’d worked through the handful of property management companies that seem to have a lock on the quainter, smaller complexes around town. And those places, when we looked, rarely allowed dogs.

Y’all, if only they’d check Rodney’s references! We’ve got a whole neighborhood of people willing to swear that he’s the sweetest thing on four legs. The ladies who work out at the bootcamp place downstairs, the waitresses at Chop Bar who pet him on their smoke breaks, the people who walk their dogs on a schedule like ours…hell, call our vet. Rodney’s practically their new mascot.

So, here’s what home will look like:

That green bit there? Past the gate and the palm trees, before the harbor? That’s where the puppy parents gather on Friday nights to let the dogs play while they sip cocktails. The lady who started it already invited us — we’ve met her on walks, and it turns out she lives on the floor we’ll be on.

A week from today, we’ll be in our new home. We won’t be Uhauling it — I promised myself years ago that I will always hire movers when I can afford them, for they are worth their weight in Advil.

Off we go, then.


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