notyourmama2: red-haired woman with sheep (Default)
[personal profile] notyourmama2
Wow, looking for housing here is such a freaking rollercoaster. Most of the stuff on craislist starts at around a thousand bucks, which was roughly twice what I could pay, and thus I went to look at many many dirty closets masquerading as apartments. One place was still totally filthy with the previous tenants stuff, one was across from a pumping station, behind serious security bars, and the size of my bedroom here at the house, and one had no actual kitchen. At all. Just a sink, a mini fridge and a microwave. After two weeks of looking, I was feeling REALLY dejected, and like I'd never be able to find something I could afford, without moving over to uptown and having 6 drunk undergrads in the apartment upstairs, or giving up on having my own private space.

But. I posted this ad on 'housing wanted', and somehow as we got closer to the end of the month, people started to write me back:

- "Mature progressive female graduate student (I'm on a phd fellowship to Tulane) seeking cozy quiet apartment in Midcity (although I'll consider other parts of town). I'd love to have a decent kitchen and bathtub, but don't need a whole lot of space. I'm responsible, quiet, don't smoke, hardly drink and don't play music loud or at all hours. I have a small, quiet, non-barking dog and love to cook and garden. I can fix my own toilet, will leave your space in better condition than when I get it, and have excellent references. I'm looking for something that starts November 1st, but would be happy to pay my deposit right away if I find a good match. I'm specifically NOT looking for a roommate...thanks so much, I'm sure you're lovely, but I really need my own quiet space so I can write".

I was particularly proud of 'mature, progressive'- sounds more approachable than 'old queer', right? Wouldn't you want to rent to me? Lots of people started to write back, most of which clearly hadn't read my ad (one had no stove, one didn't take dogs, couple of people wanted to be my roommate). You get the idea.

...but then Thursday night I got an email from a woman who felt like we might be a good match. We wrote back and forth, and Friday she sent me over to the house to meet her neighbor, Mr. Leonard, who showed me the tiny little carriage house behind a shotgun at Maurepas and Crete (landlady lives in Houston, currently). Mr. Leonard must have been at least 70, and he was so sweet...we had a great conversation about the value of quiet neighbors and people who don't park in front of your house, and he hugged me when we said goodbye.

Although tiny, the unit has TWO ACTUAL ROOMS, which is great for when I have visitors, has a brand new stove and fridge, a tiny bathroom with an ACTUAL BATHTUB, and shares the backyard with the main house, rented by two women who have prayer flags strung across their porch and vegetarian stickers on their car. Could be family, don't you think? Plus there's a shed in the backyard with a washer and dryer, and the landlady says I'm welcome to use them if I work it out with the other tenants. AND there's room for my plants, and my picked-out-of-the-trash outdoor rocking chair.

The woman called me last night, and we're totally set. I'm attaching a few pictures...use your imagination, a bit, since right now it's a little white box. But with my lemon tree outside the door, and some plants in bright colored pots, it's gonna be cute.

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