I’ve been spoiled by renting from my parents for so many years. It seems I need to get used to renting from a landlord who is, essentially, a stranger.
The kitchen cabinets in the house are awful, just awful. They’re something that is common to find in houses built in San Diego in the 1980s. From a distance, the wood is attractive, but up close it’s apparent that the wood is ugly and grimy, and the construction is poor.
We were hoping to spruce up the cabinets a bit by either whitewashing them or completely painting them white. We thought this would be a marked improvement and make the kitchen more habitable (right now it’s mostly just dirty and unpleasant).
No can do. The landlord won’t let us.
I can’t really say that I’m surprised. He wants us to return the house to him as we found it, and taste is subjective. So while we believe we’re adding value and aesthetics to the house, he doesn’t feel that way.
That’s fine. I don’t really see why I should spend any time or money doing things that only increase the value of his property anyway. What do I end up gaining from it? So all of what we do will be temporary. He’ll get back the same dirt lot, the same dying grass, and the same ugly kitchen he gave us.
In fact, the less I appreciate the house, the more incentive I’ll have to get out. Either to a better rental or a home of our own.
One thing I won’t miss about our current residence—an attached townhouse—is our neighbor. She moved into the neighboring unit about two years ago. Since then, she has been nothing but annoying. The music pounding through the walls, the cars parked in front of our garage, and the shrill, high-school-ish nature of herself and her friends. Not to mention that, no matter how many times we ask or complain to management, it doesn’t change.
So I’d like to try detached housing for a while. On the one hand, I like having a home-owners association to tend to the landscaping and building exterior; but on the other hand, I’d like to have a little space between myself and my neighbors. Particularly when the walls are paper-thin.
As much as I’ve loved going to Vegas in the past, I don’t think we’ll be going again for a long time. Each time we’ve gone, the time spent there has grown progressively less fun. This time, I think, it was a real bust.
I don’t know if it was because we’re trying to save enough money to buy a house or because I didn’t have a gaming partner—probably a bit of both—but I didn’t do any gambling this time. I didn’t even spend the entire night drinking and wandering aimlessly, taking in the sights. I hate to say it, but I think I’ve become bored with Vegas. At least for now.
We’re off to Vegas this afternoon. I’ve been looking forward to this trip for several weeks. This time around we’re staying at the Monte Carlo. At first, I was a little upset about paying so much for the room, but luckily the price kept dropping. Now we’re paying about the same amount for the entire weekend as a single night was originally going to cost.
I can’t wait.
Or, at least, as ours as a rented house can be.
I picked up the keys to the house today from our new landlord. For some reason, the whole idea of moving into the house is a little surreal. Perhaps I’ve grown too rooted to and spoiled by our current residence. There is no doubt that I’ll miss this little piece of luxury I’ve had for the past five years. I’ll manage. With luck (and a few lottery tickets?), we’ll be able to buy a house of our own by the time our lease comes due next May.
When I got home tonight, I got an earful from our neighbor about my choice to rent instead of buy. The conversation gave me second thoughts about choosing not to buy a house, but I think I’ll get over it. Particularly if I go back to read a few of the articles written about the San Diego housing market over the last few months.
During class tonight, I learned that to earn my second degree I need to meet only two requirements: study actively for two years or more; and, learn two additional kata.
There is, of course, a third requirement I have assigned myself: re-learn all of my old forms and understand them in-depth. So, after a ten year hiatus, I am well on my way to earning my second degree black belt. I wonder where I’d be had I not spent so much time away from the art.
Perhaps after earning my second degree I will investigate the possibility of starting my own Kiado-Ryu school. Yes, I’d like that.
Today marks my three month anniversary at Qualcomm. Well, technically tomorrow would be three months, but tomorrow is Saturday. I feel that I have finally come up to speed with what I need to do and have started accomplishing things and making a difference.
I have come somewhat full circle now. In college, I took a class entitled High Performance Computing. We learned how to write programs to take advantage of multiple computing resources (mostly multiple CPUs, be they within a single machine or spread across multiple machines). After the final paper, the professor asked if I would like to do graduate-level work with him. At the time I turned him down, but now I am working with a massive grid of computers and returning to do graduate-level work is looking all the more tempting (particularly since Qualcomm will help foot the bill).
About once a day or so, I stop and think how much better this job is than my last and how much happier I’ve been. The incident last month with my last company really demonstrates how bad it was. Sadly, I could have skipped all those years of worthless Web development (the development I did, not to say that Web development itself is worthless). Back around 1997, I was offered an internship at Qualcomm, but I turned it down. Oh well, as they say, hindsight is 20/20.
After looking into buying a house in San Diego, we finally faced facts and gave up. I can lament all I want about wasting my time and not buying a house when I had the opportunity, but nothing is going to change that.
To that end, today we paid our first visit to the house we’re considering renting. It’s nice, I suppose. The previous occupants didn’t treat it very well, unfortunately. However, it has been kept up reasonably well for its age. Four bedrooms, front and back yards, a garage, and—perhaps the clincher—no pet deposit. I’m not entirely pleased with the house, but beggars can’t be choosers. We can’t stay in our current residence and we can’t afford to buy a house. This is the best rental we’ve found, and I don’t expect we’d find better.
The landlord seems like a nice enough person, though I suspect it will take some time to grow accustomed to not renting from my own parents. My mom sure makes a nice landlord.
I just received an e-mail from a recruiter at Google. I’m not interested, but now I can die happy.
Since joining Qualcomm, I now look forward to waking up and going to work every day. This snippet of a Jabber converstaion may shed some light on why I feel this way:
(14:35:22) My Boss: You’re awfully quiet over there.
(14:36:12) Me: that means i’m either working really hard, or trying not to get caught doing something i shouldn’t be.
(14:36:42) My Boss: either one works for me