All the feels

Those who’ve read my blog know we moved a little more than a month ago into a house we’ve owned for over five years. It’s 1500 miles from where we previously lived, and we were eagerly anticipating this move for over a year. The most recent tenants who leased from us (the third set of renters) were by far the worst. The other two took immaculate care of our house, treating it as if it were their own. They notified us when things needed repair and inquired if they could make changes. They paid rent early or on time. All was well. The last family was another story. From day one it was apparent they did not care one bit what we or anyone in the community thought. They broke the lease by having a cat (my husband is severely allergic and we had specifically said “no cats.”)  They allowed their two young sons to ride bicycles in the Nature Preserve behind the homes on our street, forbidden by the HOA CC&R’s.  They painted a baseball diamond on our street with permanent paint, also against the CC&R’s, and we were repeatedly called by the HOA office that WE, not they, would be fined because of our unruly tenants.

Upon moving in, we discovered broken and/or damaged appliances,  rusted BB’s in our backyard water feature as well as the light bulb in it broken (gee, I wonder why… all those BB’s…) and our mailbox dented in several places from BB’s and golf balls in such a way it hardly opened. The freezer part of the refrigerator was filthy with sticky red residue which was from a drink that exploded in the ice maker and ran down the door, seal, and onto the floor. The stovetop vent hood was dripping and coated with grease. Nail polish had been dripped on the stone tub surround and tile in two bathrooms. The dishwasher was so heavily encrusted with hard water lime deposits we actually did not know the inside door was stainless steel, it was all white. Every sink faucet dripped. Sprinklers were either turned off or broken and many bedding plants have died. One garage door is badly damaged and will need to be repaired. We had to replace over 40 light bulbs which were burned out.

To top it off, although we have had a service to treat pests (we live against a hillside so it is necessary) the house is crawling with ants. They told us they paid to have the home professionally cleaned.

I don’t understand.

I have spent so many hours cleaning (after all the unpacking and organizing) only to have to start over after re-treatment for ants, replacing light bulbs (dust and dirt fall from the recessed fixtures) that I’m mentally drained. The very worst part is, our realtor (and friend) did a basic walk-through before we moved in and told us the place looked pretty good, and so my husband returned 75% of their deposit. Now they have come calling for the last bit and actually have the nerve to think they deserve it, even after we sent a list of everything we found wrong. I don’t know how people can be so mean and self-righteous. They think everything is “normal wear and tear” and they only lived here in my beautiful like-new home three years and basically destroyed it. A glass shower door chipped. A big scratch on the stainless steel finish of the fridge. The glass plate in the microwave oven chipped. Granite countertop edges chipped. Wood finish of my kitchen cabinets all along the bottom badly worn away. Three years. I don’t know about you but that’s not normal wear to me.

This is why I haven’t posted since we moved in. I’m just so emotionally worn down. I have never felt this way before, but I’ve lost faith in my fellow man.

Thanks for listening, if you’ve read my sad saga.

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Home at last

bunny

It’s not quite a month since Sir and our three dogs and I drove 1500 miles from east Texas to our house in San Clemente, California. We’ve owned this house for over 6 years and been leasing it out. That is a tale for another day. Our Texas home is for sale. It was a rather excruciating two day trip in terrible heat (the southwest was in the grip of a bad heat wave.) My car had an issue in that the passenger side mirror whistled/squealed at high speeds (reported to dealer the day we bought the car and repaired twice already.) All in all, we were so glad to reach our destination! I’ve been exhaustively unpacking, cleaning and organizing the house. Sir is continuing to do a ten day work shift back in Texas every month and he is there now, returning Tuesday. Last Thursday the TV, phone and internet were finally hooked up.  Most of the boxes are unpacked or have been relegated to the garages. I mopped my floors twice and cleaned all the bathrooms. Today I can stop and take a bit of a break.

We live way up in the foothills near the US Marine Base Camp Pendleton. When I was a little girl there was nothing here. I mean NOTHING. I feel bad man has come in and built so far up in the hills destroying the natural habitat… and look at me. Here I am living right here smack up against the hillside. When I walk my dogs we see lizards and the cutest cottontail bunnies like the one shown. My big boy Boxer wants to give chase, but I will Not Allow It.

I am loving the cooler SoCal weather. Was it a 19 year bad dream, living in east Texas? Yesterday I drove an hour and a half to Santa Monica, near where I grew up, to visit my best friend since third grade. She is getting married (for the first time) at our ripe old age and wanted me to be there while she tried on wedding gowns. As I stood at the door of her place it was as if I had never moved away. I marveled that I was, after 19 years, back home breathing the ocean air and chatting with my dear dear friend. I felt years of stress fade away and I could feel life and happiness fill my soul again.

Thomas Wolfe was so wrong. You can go home again.