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Sunday, May 18, 2003

This afternoon, R and I did our first ever property viewing. Even though almost all my friends have already bought houses—decades ago, some of them—I’ve always resisted. Part of it is the driving thing: I love my neighborhood and really don’t want to leave it, but it’s ridiculously overpriced and thus out of our reach. I don’t want to live in the boonies, where we could afford to buy, because since I can’t drive, won’t drive, I’d feel trapped and far away from it all. Plus, a lot of houses seem boring, and who wants to drop all their dosh on something boring?

So, when R’s art teacher mentioned these artists’ lofts, we were both sort of fascinated. They’re not quite our current neighborhood, but near enough. And lofts? Artists? Nothing boring there, eh? Positively Tribeca-ish, in fact. So, when we realized we were nearby (we’d been driving by still more friends’ just-purchased-but-not-yet-moved-into house), and noticed there were balloons all tied up outside (which we reckoned—only half-correctly as it happened—signified an open house was going on), we figured we might as well check it out.

So, there we are, drooling all over this truly gorgeous loft space, which is totally and undeniably out of our price range, when I notice that there are some photos on display. When I take a look, I recognize someone I worked with for about three years at my previous place of employment. Now, this wasn’t a massive soulless corporation, but a tiny, right-on, strive-and-struggle-sister kind of place where we shared everything. That cat sitting quietly on the bed a few feet away wasn’t just any cat, that was the cat my former co-worker loved so much and whose every temperature or unexcused absence she’d worry herself into a state about!

As if that wasn’t spooky enough, just about this time last year, R and I went to a retirement party for someone who’d been my boss at the right-on place of employment. The loft-dweller arrived late because she was just returning from her honeymoon. When we’d talked for a few minutes, we realized we’d all been in Paris at the same time; in fact, we’d been staying about four blocks apart, and all four of us had been at the Pride celebrations at the Place de la Bastille at more or less the same time just a week before!

Unfortunately, I doubt that all these coincidences mean she and her man would be willing to halve their asking price for us!