Are you sitting down? After renting for years and years, we have finally decided to buy a house. And, phewmungus, its stressful! Not just because we're selling our souls to a mortgage company (we haven't got much left anyway after the credit card companies took their share). But mainly because we're no longer going to be the carefree gypsies we've always been. Okay, I must be honest. I'm about as far from a gypsy as you can get. I hate small, enclosed spaces, I detest billowing floral skirts and I'm about as carefree as, well, Mr Obama himself. But I am a wanderer. I have never lived in one house for more than 4 years. I've traveled all over the world, and for the last few years I've dragged my family with me. In 2 years, Micah has visited 8 countries and 5 states. And he's loved it.
But now we've decided to buy a house and settle down (gulp). It just makes sense since the real estate market is up shit creek depressed and we're getting older more responsible and we're thinking of having another kid expanding our family again. See, I am capable of rational, objective decision-making. Mum would be proud.
And of course, buying a house involves looking at a LOT of houses. Something I didn't think about when I signed up for the job. Not because I don't enjoy house hunting - what's not to like about snooping through weird people's houses and figuring out what makes them tick? One dude was into bondage (ribbons on the bed post) catholic guilt (pic of Jesus on the cross over the bed) and eating (100 boxes of Kraft mac & cheese in his closet on the shelf... in the bedroom). Seriously? The potential scenarios are just mind-blowing. I mean why was Jesus there? To keep an eye on the eating or the bondage?
But what makes house hunting really hard is dragging a 3 year old along for the ride. Because, let's face it, its boring for kids. And because 3 year olds have more pent up anger than a teenager on crack. And because they're 3, and sometimes that's enough in itself.
Until we saw a run-down hell-hole of a house with collapsing walls and cockroaches and bats (I swear). And Micah fell in love. Not with the bats, thank god. But with the feces-infested rabbit hutch outside. There was no rabbit (it was probably scared to death by the cockroach-eating bat), but Micah was convinced there would be one day. When we bought the house. And got him a rabbit. And the rabbit's name would be Jack. And he'd be brown. End of story. No negotiation. That. Was. That. He flat-out refused to look at any more houses. Why bother when you've already found your dream home?
And I'm not falling into the trap of buying him a rabbit (when we eventually do find something bat-free in our price range). Firstly because pets are a lot of work - we already have a basset hound who's more admin than Lady Gaga and Britney Spears combined. Secondly because I'd end up doing all the abovementioned work. Thirdly becuase our other dog likes to kill chase small animals. And lastly because rabbits are the freaks of the animal kingdom. Those little needle-claws are just waiting to gouge out your eyes and their deceptively bony bodies remind me of something out of the exorcist. Laugh all you want, but its true. Did you not see Donnie Darko? It was practically a documentary.
So the house hunt continues. And we're paying for a babysitter each time (add that to the mortgage payment). And Micah is convinced I'm going to buy him a rabbit each time I leave. "You fetch Jack? You fetch Jack?" he says with big, wide excited eyes. Somehow a 13-hour plane ride doesn't seem so bad any more.
Maybe I'm more gypsy than I thought.
This is why I don't want another pet. Molly basset hound is a full time job already! And yes, that's mud. And yes, it did end up all over my kitchen.