Welp, the fact that I haven't updated over here since May should be a pretty good indication as to how busy I've been with the new job.
I've been at it for just over six months, and it's been pretty grueling, I must say. I don't think I've ever worked harder. Which isn't to say I'm not enjoying it-- but I do miss being home, and I miss Matt very much. But the novelty of walking into a hotel room and seeing what amenities await and what Thai restaurants are near hasn't worn thin yet, so there's still that.
So, what's been going on ... let's see.
My folks moved from East Hanover to Hardwick, NJ in May. My childhood home is gone, and I thought it was going to be much more traumatic than it was. Truthfully, I just don't think I've had time to think about it. Their new place is absolutely beautiful-- peaceful, quiet, grassy, spacious, bright and airy. My parents love it, and my nieces and nephew love it too. It's fun to see them running around the yard-- there's plenty of space and trees to climb. The place also features my dad's fantasy garage, which I'm pretty sure was the main reason they bought the house (the other reason being that it's a ranch, which my mom has been wanting for years). They seem to be enjoying the renovation process, which is pretty cool to behold. Every time I visit there's a new transformation, though the house was meticulously (actually neurotically) kept, so the only improvements they're making are ones they want-- the house needs nothing. I believe next on the docket is a big lift for the garage and a new deck or patio for the backyard.
Since my folks have gotten this new house, I have noticed I don't say "I'm going home this weekend" when referring to visiting my parents. Instead, now I simply say "I'm going to see my folks." Their place is not my home, and that feels very natural. But it's also made me really want my own place. I'm still torn as to where I want to be. I feel a pull towards Portland (OR), but I do love the east coast, and I also love being able to see my folks more often than if I was living 3000 miles away. Granted, with my job I can work anywhere there's an airport nearby, but I think the east coast still makes the most sense. But does Delaware?
I find myself growing tired of the NASCAR mentality and the irritating Delaware accent. But I also know that property taxes are super-cheap here, the traffic is reasonable compared to other places, and I am within a 90-120 minute drive/train ride to DC, Baltimore, Philly, New York and the Jersey shore. That's pretty awesome- so it's definitely got its perks.
The housing bubble has not yet popped, and I have a sneaking suspcion it will very soon. I don't want to buy a $220K condo only to have it decrease in value in two years-- that would kill me. My pal Danielle bought a 2 bedroom/2 bath condo in Arizona for less than $100K, and in under two years it has doubled in value. Awesome for her, but crappy for me who is still renting.
I don't mind renting, really... but I would like a bigger place with more storage. That'd be pretty cool. Matt and I went for a walk a few weeks ago, and instead of walking in the park by my house, we did a 180 and walked through the condo development to the north of my apartment complex. We found a 2 bedroom / 2.5 bathroom place for sale, and we also happened to bump into the condo association president who was happy to let us into the unit and show us around. It was immaculate and huge, and an end-unit to boot. The only drawback to this place I can see is that it has no garage, and I was really hoping to have one so Matt could store his motorcycles out of the snow.
Anyway, I'm still wrestling with the idea of "Why do I want to own something that I won't be around to enjoy?" I might as well keep renting, though a larger place might be in order.
Matt lives in a beautiful rowhouse in downtown Wilmington, right off of 95. He's got two roommates, Mark (the owner of the house, also his best friend since high school), and Joe Trainor (one of my best friends). Mark has invited me to move into their house, but I don't think I can swing it. It's a big stretch for me to have one roommate (my boyfriend); having three, even if they're "never home" is way too much. I wouldn't have my own room, I wouldn't have my own office, and after travelling all week, when I come home that's really all I want. But they do have a pretty awesome claw-foot tub.........
Oh poo. I'll figure it out someday. :-)