first plan of attack, when driving down south, was to rent a home (after the 3 months that the company puts us up in the beige place), because obviously we don't know the woodlands area, don't get the lay of the land, don't know the up-and-coming neighbourhoods from the wrong-side-of-the-tracks neighbourhoods, and before you know it we'd end up buying in some nasty third rate neighbourhood filled with rapists, loose women, and smelly foreigners next door to a crack house. so rent for a year or so, figure shit out, etc. etc.
the budget we'd fixed for said rent seemed entirely reasonable - the interwebs were filled with houses well within our price range, and some of them even had granite! getting closer to the time of arrival, i realised that the properties within our price range quickly disappeared (many were for rent or for sale and were sold) and i had to increase my monthly budget. twice. sadly, when i started looking with a realtor, it turned out the vast majority of the places were the sort i'd have happily inhabited 25 years earlier, but which, despite not really being a snob*, i no longer want to live in. sure, one or two were cute, but those were roughly the size of a postage stamp, and what with a garage-full of polish mid-century modern whatsits, well, it wasn't gonna fly. out of the 14 or so i looked at, only one was good, but by then we'd gotten to the very top of our price range and realised that a comparable mortgage+tax would get us way more house.
upon further consultation, mr. monkey decreed we should buy instead. by then we'd realised that 1. the woodlands is pretty nice throughout, 2. there are smelly immigrants everywhere, what with the booming job-market suctioning engineers from every country on the globe**, 3. there were no obvious crack houses in the neighbourhoods close to mr. monkey's work, and 4. why rent for 2K/mo when you can buy for 1.6K/mo? so i looked. and looked. and looked and looked and found two houses i really liked. a lot. one slightly above our price range, and one far below. one with a gorgeous pool and move-in ready awesomeness, and one with a tiny but charming yardlet and an unpretentious homey interior. i took mr. monkey to see them both.
today, crusty juggler texted me to ask how mr. monkey liked the house with the pool. this is my response:
he liked it but thought it was too much. not necessarily too much $ but too much house. too fancy, i guess? then we went to see the little one... and he liked it more .. then we came home and he had a brain aneurysm and said instead of buying he wants to build and then i went out, got a gun, and committed a double murder/suicide.
so this is where we are now and this is why i don't wanna talk about it: because the person who wants to build a tiny house (or at least a small simple house) doesn't buy a computer screen for unspecified reasons, or collect an embarrassing number of spoons and ladles, and most certainly doesn't ship a vast portion of the contents of his grandparents' place to another country across the ocean for large amounts of money for sentimental reasons.
do i sound frustrated? perhaps. but i went to the laptop, did a meditation whatsit, and started making peace with this new state of affairs. the rapidity with which i made my peace with it made me realise that all i need, really, is just some time to get used to things. don't spring anything on me, work up to it gently, and it's quite likely i'll be just fine with it. eventually. i'm highly adaptable...or something. wanna sell all our possessions and start a fancy pork sausage factory in tel aviv? ummmmm....ok? how about building a yurt in auckland? sure...let's do it. at any rate, just give me some warning and i'll adapt. it must be adaptability, cause the only other option i can think of is that i just don't much give a shit.
*this is true. mr. monkey and i feel very badly out of place in shiny 5-star type places and would much rather stick to 2.5-3 star range. too much wrought iron in the gate, too many water-spouting-statuary, too many gilded swans, and we get seriously nervous. we're immigrants! we're not used to fancy!
**i certainly hope you know me well enough by now to realise i'm totally joking about the smelly immigrants, right? because i love smelly foreign food, am often redolent of garlic myself, and at this point in time, i'm a legal alien.