At last we can breathe a tiny sigh of relief: we have a new place to live. We’re in a 2-bedroom apartment that’s easily 2-3 times bigger than the tiny shoebox we’ve been living in the past year. We’re only 2 blocks from the beach, 1/2 block from the N line, and there are crows AND ravens everywhere!
I can’t believe how lucky we’ve been on this place, quite the contrast to last year’s repeated travails and disappointments. I found this place on Craig’s List, it and several other places, planning to flit from open house to open house. There are horror stories about SF apartment hunting and the futility of attending open houses, so we went into it feeling grim, grim, grim. This place was the first on our list to check out. We got there early, the apartment building still locked. It was us and another young couple and another guy. Once inside, we did only the quickest of look-arounds. The other couple were turned off by some of the apartment’s less-than-up-to-date qualities. A little bit run down, but so much space. The living room was gigantic, the kitchen not bad, no dishwasher, but I don’t care about dishwashers — I never once used the brand new dishwasher at our old apartment! There was a little room off to the side that the ad hadn’t even mentioned, probably intended to be a dining room, possibly perfect for us to use as an office … The bathroom was a little grungy, but not bad, and quirky too, which I liked. The first bedroom was a little bigger than the one we’d had at the old place, big enough to actually fit the dressers as well as the bed. The second bedroom was ridiculously large. Like Texas ranch house large. Ha!
We descended on the property manager, pushing our already-prepared credit reports, “We want this. What do we need to do to make this happen?” We were aggressive about it in a way that we’re never aggressive. The other guy was being aggressive too, though his story was a little weird, wanting to pay a year’s rent upfront in cash and talking about another roommate joining the lease at a later time. The property manager directed us to visit their website and download the rental application, then fax it and the other paperwork to them. In other words, no applications right now.
We left the apartment, deciding to bail on the other 4 open houses, and put all our hopes into this place. We went straight home and filled out the applications and faxed everything over that afternoon. A few tense moments with the credit reports and the employment references … but we got it!
It took us a couple of weeks of ZipVan rentals to ferry our possessions over to the new place. I have to praise T for spearheading this effort. He drove every single time, braving the horrors of Oak Street traffic and uncompromising neighbors and doing basically all the heavy lifting. Three flights of stairs over and over and over with me at the bottom guarding the van and ferrying boxes from the doorstep to the van. T made all of this possible. And when we were done, we hired a moving truck and crew to grab the last handful of furniture items that T and I couldn’t carry, and it went crazy smooth.
Now here we are in our apartment at the edge of the city in the land of accurate descriptors. The neighborhood is Outer Sunset, and indeed, this is where the sun sets on San Francisco. We live mere blocks from Ocean Beach with fog and salty breeze. Ravens call from the giant tree outside the window. It’s a little bit perfect.