Monday, September 12, 2011

Big fish in a little cocoon... (it'll make sense by the end, promise!)

Sunday morning.  Ugh.  That last glass might not have been such a good idea...  OK, the second-last glass might not have been brilliant, either.  Whoops.

We grump our way down the hall to the breakfast room with 15 minutes to spare.  Orange juice.  OK, feeling a bit more human.  Coffee -- oh, how I love you, coffee.  Lemon poppyseed muffin...  OK, you might have to wait in my purse for an hour or two.

Stupid second-last... third-last glass of wine.

We had decided the night before to take a drive-through of the various neighbourhoods in Victoria, to get a feel for the city.  So we piled in the car and first headed west along the coast.  Lots of beautiful neighbourhoods right on the water and walking distance to downtown -- we don't even want to think of the housing costs, though!   Of course, the tourist map we got at the hotel does not indicate where the one-way streets are, or which streets are closed for market on Sundays, so we make a few unexpected detours, but eventually find our way back to the main roads.  We figure out the bridge to Esquimault (eventually), and meander our way to... well, we hit another wrong turn and seem to be on an army base.   They obviously have the local wildlife well trained, though, as we see three deer walking, single file, down the sidewalk -- I wonder if they obey streetlights, too?  We go as far as Royal Roads University, tootling around the campus, getting lost even there, but enjoying the scenery!

We figure that's about as far as we'd want to be from downtown, so make our way back -- getting lost again, but enjoying the detours.  We get back to downtown, then work our way along the eastern part of the shore.  Much nicer views here.  We drive through a beautiful neighbourhood that has us going "ooh" and "aah" -- right on the sea, nice bicycle path and long stretch of beach.  We see an "open house" sign and decide to peek in -- wonder how much a house in this neighbourhood would set us back?

The answer: $1.3M.  Well, isn't that nice.

We won't tell the agent we're musicians, and will fake that we belong here. :-)

The house is quite lovely, with a great "cottage" out back that would make a lovely recording studio.  And the living room would be great for house concerts.  As we murmur away at the bedrooms on the top floor, another man says "you the ones with Ontario plates?"  Yes, we are.  "Don't let this one fool you -- they're pricing it way too high, you should be able to get a much better house than this one for that price."

Good to know.

If I'm going to pay over one million for a house, I at least want water view, damnit.  :-)

On our way to the car, another open-houser stops to chat.  He's from Toronto as well, just moved out a few years ago, and has nothing but good things to say.  Yes, even total strangers are encouraging us to move here.

We work our way further northeast, and the grande bold craving takes hold just as we're heading through Cadboro Bay -- with a nice Starbucks on the corner.  We grab some lunch and coffee and decide to check out some more open houses.  We're a bit late in the day -- most are going to be finishing within a half hour to hour and a half.  We grab the coffees to go and, armed with laptop and internet stick, Mapquest our way to the nearest open house.

This one is much more reasonably priced.

Of course, we're also looking at it after viewing a $1.3M home, so might not be as impressed as we ought to be...   Also, the agent is a bit pushy.

We head to the next one still open, down in Oak Bay (the neighbourhood where Sandra and Landon live, which is a beautiful place!).  OK, now we're talking.  It's a beautiful house, just a few blocks away from downtown Oak Bay, easy distance to downtown Victoria.  Beautiful house, with a few funny quirks (it was built by the owner), but definitely do-able as far as recording studio / teaching studio / life in general is concerned.  The agent inside is also really nice -- answers all our questions, not even remotely pushy.  Hears we're into music, and has TONS of suggestions of where to go in town to meet other musicians (which he knows, because he's a jazz drummer in his spare time), and has a really good sense of the type of things we're looking for.

Folks, I think we've found our real estate agent.

We tell him it's not going to be right away, and we're not certain of all -- if any -- the details, but that we'd like to, sometime in the near future, come out again, stay a few weeks and maybe have him show us some things that match our wish list.  He's on it.  We exchange cards, and...  ohmygod, I think we just found our real estate agent.

We've spent so much time chit-chatting and dreaming and scheming that we've missed any more showings.  Which is probably OK.  We'll be back.

Send a note to Ali, who says they're pretty much done with their conference folks, and are heading back to the house, themselves.  We pick up some wine (masochists) for the crew, and go back to Sandra and Landon's, where a very happy Amber greets us.  Don heads to the nearby (Oak Bay) bakery to pick up some bread for the morning, and returns just as Ali and Sandra come in -- Landon comes close behind, with a salmon for dinner.

Their first annual National CCVSI Conference went spectacularly -- was there ever any doubt? :-)

A little wine, a lot of dinner, many conversations and... oh my goodness, will you look at the time!  Oh... whaddayamean it's not even 10:00 yet?  Everyone is exhausted.  We all give in to the feeling and say our good-nights.

Now all we have to do is find a way to get Ali out here, too.  :-)  She insists we at least stay in Ontario long enough to do Christmas.  Yoiks, I don't think that's a problem.  Even if we make this decision, it will need a wee bit of preparation.

I say "even if", but...  I think our hearts are there.  Brains need some time to catch up.  Logistics need a lot of time to catch up.  Guilt needs to shut up.

Cannington was a lovely place while I was there, but after a few years, it became too small.  Moving to Orillia got me a little closer to where I wanted / needed to be, but... it's also becoming too small.  Which is sad, because I've really loved it.  But I really loved Cannington, too.  It was a very important cocoon for me when I needed to be away from everything.  And as I needed to ease my way back into the world, Orillia was similarly the perfect place for me at the time.  But my wings are back, and I need a place to test them. I need to push myself, I need to be pushed.  I've been way too comfy in my little nest (yeah yeah, cocoon, nest, I'm mixing metaphors, too bad).

So why do I feel guilty for wanting to pursue my path?

Damn, I feel a whole album of songs coming on...  :-) 

And maybe some therapy...



  1. I've just had a wonderful hour getting caught up on your blog!!!! Past and present. The Brights all together. How lovely.

    can't wait for coffee this afternoon.



  2. Thanks, lovely -- see you soon!