Friday, May 23, 2003

Home Sweet...?

Looking for an apartment is a pain in my ass.

Apartment hunting in Boston Proper is its own special breed of animal. The fact that you often have to put up four months' rent up front is bad enough, but add in the fact that rent here is scoffable-ridiculous, and you've got a peach of a problem on your hands. I spend hours sifting through the multitudes of online ads, praying to the craigslist gods to send me the "perfect" apartment. And so far, they have not responded.
Sean and I (er...P.S.--Sean and I are moving in together? Did I fail to mention that? :) ) have looked at a few places, but nothing has worked out yet. There were the two places near the bike trail to Davis Square, in which about 15 Chinese people (per apartment) resided in. There was the one where Sean had to duck to get through the front door. The one past Teele Square was nice, and affordable, but just a bit too far out. I came down with a case of verbal diarrhea and blurted out something about our (my) cat at the impossibly beautiful, impossibly cheap, impossibly convenient place off Powderhouse Square. (Note to self: CAT DOES NOT EXIST). The loft at the Piano Guild in the South End was smaller than they had advertised it, and the guy from the place with the domed ceilings and granite countertops in the old governor's mansion never called me back.

That brings us to today--when we're planning to see a place off Powderhouse later tonight, a place in Revere (I know, I know...but it sounded really nice!!!) tomorrow, and a bunch of places with realtor Julianne (who is no doubt eager to collect her one-month's-rent fee!) on Sunday.

Part of the difficulty is deciding where to live--where will we get the most apartment and the most convenience for the least money?

I've become such a snob since moving to Boston. I used to be this bohemian hippie who believed everyone was "equal", and just last week I could be heard saying that white trash should be kept away from me in CVS--like a White Trash Section and a Non-White Trash Section. *shudder*. (This makes me wonder if looking at a place in Revere is such a good idea...) I admit it--I like answering with a zip code of some prestige when someone asks "Where do you live?". Right now, Sean's resident city causes replies of "Ohh...", while mine brings forth things like "Oh, well EXCUUUUUUUSE me!", or "Well well well!" I prefer the latter responses. Like I said, I've become a horrible snob. You pay 65 grand to get a master's degree, and you see how down-to-earth YOU feel. Of course, that begs the question--how can I afford a prestigious address with that kind of debt? Well, I can't, not really. But I can't REALLY afford rent in Boston, period. So, why not have the nice place?

And then, there's the simple matter of finding a place that will accomodate all of our respective stuff. At this point, Sean lives alone in a smaller 3-bedroom apartment. He uses all but one of the bedrooms as actual living space. I live in a 3 bedroom + study with 2 roommates--but it's a pretty big 3 bedroom. We both pay very little for the amount of space we have. So, we're looking at paying MORE for potentially less apartment. This is not a pleasant thought. And Sean's behemoth cookie-monster-blue living room set just won't fit in a small place. And we need light for the bonsai trees. And a 6-foot-4 guy has to be able to have a queen sized bed. And if there's not room for my 10
-or 12-piece set of Fiestaware, screw that kitchen! It goes on and on.

When we were first talking about moving in together, I envisioned the apartment search as an idyllic time. The young professional couple enters the realtors office, hand in hand and starry-eyed. The realtor, seeing at once what a couple of quality tenants they are, shows them nothing but the very best apartments. They're a bit expensive, but smiling landlords eagerly lower their prices. Of course they'll take less to have such a quality couple living in their apartment, and not slovenly students! Can they also paint it pretty colors just to ensure the adorable couple will move in?

It's not exactly like that. Maybe it would be, if we could afford $2200 a month for a 2 bedroom. But alas, that is not to be.

So, keep your fingers crossed and say a prayer to the apartment gods for us. If it works out, we'll grill for you on our porch and let you bring over housewarming gifts. Did you know I like Fiestaware?

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