Various T'ings ... Stars on Ice, House, and Alex
I see that I owe some greetings ...
And, to the whole flist ...
Of course, it's cold and miserable, though it's supposed to warm up tomorrow. It's a pity, though, because Rita's gives away free Italian ice on the first day of Spring, and Bobby and I had all intentions of visiting our local franchise and partaking in two. But it's so damned cold that I can't bring myself to consider Italian ice, even if it is free. Personally, I am beginning to entertain the conspiracy theory that Rita's secretly controls the weather because they offered free Italian ice last year too, and it was cold and miserable and raining on the first day of Spring so no one went.
Anyway, the Stars on Ice show was great, as usual. Though it made me want to skate badly, probably because I know that it is as much fun as it looks! Alex stayed with my parents while we were gone, and we spent the night over there to save us that extra hour of driving to go home. My parents' house is still in shambles, and the builders arrived bright and early this morning and started ripping the siding off the house right at the guest room; poor Alex hid under the bed, only he's so big now that only his head would fit under! It reminded me of our Golden/Lab mix Moose, who used to hate when people watched him poop, so he would stick his head in the weeds and leave the ass-end hanging out. But he couldn't see us, so therefore, we couldn't see him. Canine logic.
Alex is exhausted now; Grandmom and Granddad's house is exhausting! The dog never settles for more than a few minutes. First of all, there's twice the number of people to pester with his toys. Then there's a big dusty room to run around in while attempting to eat stray pieces of insulation. Then there's Jack the Cat, who edges a little closer to Alex every time Alex visits. Jack chases Alex, though the latter is four times the size of the former! Alex ended up sleeping for the entire afternoon once we got home ... which was pretty much what Bobby and I did as well!
I should mention that Bobby and I have officially decided that we will not be renewing our lease for this apartment and will start looking at houses at the end of summer.
There are multiple reasons for this.
- We want Alex to be able to have a yard to run and play in. Taking him on walks is all well and good until the weather becomes utterly inhospitable. Alex may not mind being out in the cold but Bobby and I do.
- Our rent is ridiculously high. Our mortgage payment would not be much more than our rent is now. So let's see: spend pretty much the same amount of money for a one-bedroom apartment or a single-family home. Hmmm ... And yes, I am taking into account that our utilities will be higher and that repairing things will no longer be a matter of calling the landlord. However, we have also owed a couple thousand dollars in taxes the past two years, which is fairly ridiculous, considering that Bobby and I are far from affluent and Dick Cheney got a tax refund last year. As would we, if we were homeowners.
- We are simply out of room! We cannot set up much of our computer equipment and we have to wait for a warm, sunny day to paint because there is so much stuff on the desk. Under the bed, futon, and desk are all considered viable storage options.
- This community has gone downhill since we moved here. We're on the third set of owners in less than three years, which is in itself suspicious to me. But the new owners don't seem to think that we need to have the ice cleared from the front steps in less than a day or that it's necessary to bother with removing the satellite dish that some slob tossed into one of the streams much less the mounds of trash clogging the same. For what we pay here ... just no.
- And I'm simply sick of living on top of other people. Perhaps this isn't abundantly clear (harhar) but I am not much of a socialite. I don't like to be around people; I don't like most people, and looking at their cigarette butts in our front garden or smelling our next-door neighbor's pot every day or listening to their pain-in-the-ass poodle yapping to high heaven, day in and day out, is not improving my outlook.
So we'll be moving slightly north and west to Carroll County. For one, Carroll County is hardly developed at all. For another, Carroll County is still cheap. We can get a single-family home on an acre of land in Carroll County for less than we would pay for a townhouse in Howard County. For a fifteen-minute drive west ... yes, I'll take it!
In fact, one of the primary things we're looking for is a bit of land. I despise those modern communities of ginormous houses on a parcel of land with about five feet of yard on either side of the house. Besides, all of those houses look the same, and I've heard bad things about the construction of such places, considering that it is done en masse. We would like a modest-sized house on a nice piece of land. I would love a wooded lot where people can't see the backyard and I can lie around naked if I want. And you never know with me ... I might want! *evil grin* Bobby supports me in this notion, not surprisingly.
So Bobby's started to look into this, and when the weather warms up, we're going to drive around Carroll County and check out some of the towns we're considering. Aside from the time that he spent practically living at my parents' house during our university years, Bobby's always been a city boy. I told him that he's going to have to get used to country wisdom, like looking at the way the leaves are turning to tell if it's going to rain or measuring the black stripe on a woolly bear caterpillar to judge how harsh a winter to expect. He's up to the challenge; I think that my antisocial tendencies are rubbing off on him. That and working out of DC ... right in the heart of urbanity! He says that he needs a place to live where he can escape that, and I don't blame him.
So that's the first and latest on our house quest. There probably won't be much else to tell for a while; our lease here doesn't expire until October, but this is our goal.
On a completely unrelated note, I had hoped to reply to comments today but spent most of the day being tired and hungry and doing nothing of significance. Besides going out of town, with all that I have been accomplishing lately, I need to eat my weight in food to keep going. I will try my best to answer them tomorrow after work!