Friday, September 2, 2011

Park Place

Every cloud has it's silver lining. That's been my motto since we downsized from our three bedroom home in Houston to our 2 bedroom apartment in Santa Barbara.

Minimal storage space? We stay on top of clutter and only keep what we need and use.
No yard? No yard work. And we've got lots of open space to enjoy maintenance free.
No washer and dryer? Finishing four loads of laundry at once and folding with Ryan while watching a movie or TV show really is a nice deal.
Only one bathroom? Bathroom cleaning is twice as fast as it used to be.
No dishwasher? Counter top dishwasher came to our rescue here.
No garage? Umm...the parking lot....ummm....you get to use your umbrella more?

As you can see, I still haven't quite figured out what the silver lining is on this one. But after two years of living here, multiple neighbor and office negotiations, we secured the optimal parking spot for our apartment. Yes, we still haul the wagon out to bring in groceries, but we don't walk one step further than we absolutely have to.
Please see map to truly appreciate the saga:

At the start we were pretty bad off. Add to distance, a parking lot full of potholes, poor drainage, loose gravel, and you'd better believe I hated rainy days. Each day as we tromped to and from our car we noticed a spot that was closer and always empty. We talked to the office and they agreed to switch our spot. Then we found out why that spot was empty: major bird drop zone. Since we're not keen on washing our car every three days, we quickly moved back to our original spot. Months later when the Flemings moved, we seized their spot like vultures on dead meat. (Was that too graphic?) This was a great improvement. Although our walk was nearly as long, I didn't have to cross a parking lot dragging kids by the hands. I would have been happy to park there for the rest of our days here, but then one night my parking aspirations were ignited anew. We arrived home and started walking up the sidewalk when we passed another family who had also just parked and were walking to their apartment. It seemed that our spot was closer to their home and their spot was closer to ours. Shortly thereafter Ryan made some chit chat with the dad while their little girl played on the lawn, and bada-bing bada-boom he agreed to trade parking spaces with us.
Clearly the closeness of our parking spot does not compensate for my still-present garage cravings, but sometimes when I'm walking in I can't help but say to myself, "We've come a long way baby!"


Jason and Kimber said...

Wow! I thought my walk was bad until I read this haha! I am happy for your upgrade.

Jeannie said...

Way to wheel and deal! A fine upgrade indeed. Glad it's close AND you don't have to worry about bird poop... as much.

Hilary said...

I seriously cried the day our parking spot dramatically improved. I might have been as happy as the birth of our first child (so maybe I'm exaggerating, but barely). Good work on your upgrade!