Oct 302009

After looking at what must have been a hundred different properties in the area and finally deciding on one, we thought that selling our house in California would be academic.  We’d done a lot of work on it during our 15 years in the neighborhood and we thought that anyone looking for a house in our area, in their right minds, would snap it up.  We had about a month before the house in Creswell became ours so after signing some freshly printed forms with a shiny new pen and with every bit of confidence we left our house in the capable hands of what we thought was a top notch realtor.

The first open house came and went.  We were inundated with neighbors wanting to get a glimpse into our house, but really having no honorable intensions.   There was other interest as well. There must have been a hundred people walking through, ruining our new carpet and commenting about how they would have done this differently or that totally differently.  They ate our candy bars, drank our drinks, and insulted our sense of style.  We collected a stack of eclectic realtor cards so numerous that we could have used them to wallpaper a wall.  Maybe that would have made the horded masses happy.  Everything right was progressing, except for one thing; no wanted to make an offer on our house.

The first month came and went and we decided to head up north to claim our new homestead.  We were still confident that our California home would be sold any second so we left it in the competent hands of our youngest daughter.  We’d rented a truck to pack some stuff up with us, not wanting to waste a trip.  My wife drove our minivan; appropriately packed.  So, with a sad regret to be leaving, but a hearty excitement about the future we turned our convoy towards Creswell.

We spent our first night as Creswellians at the only Inn in town.  Fortunately, unlike the Bible story, there was room for us.  We got in pretty late so it was dark.  We parked our, what now seemed small, truck out with the other goliaths of the road, got our room, and the next thing we knew it was morning.

I normally wake up earlier than my wife, and she takes a bit longer to get ready, so I headed out for my constitutional around town.  I was very excited to be here, but my first impressions of the town were not that overwhelming.  We had wanted to move to a small town all along, but I started to wonder if perhaps we’d undershot our goal.  I’d dreamt the previous night of Everwood and Stars Hollow and other small towns I’d seen on TV.  Creswell, didn’t have that Hollywood aided charm.  I saw a sign that said there were 2403 people in Creswell.  I walked back to the hotel doing the math of subtracting 2, the ones that were moving away, and adding 3 – us.  We ate our first official breakfast here at the Rocket Inn since I’d learned on the www.ourcreswell.com website that it had the best breakfast in town.  Who were we to argue with Creswell’s unchallenged online authority?

When we were considering buying the house in Creswell the realtors and previous owners assured us that 1) It never snows in the “valley” and 2) If there was ever a power failure we would always be back on line quickly.  History had proven this to be true after all.  This was our first house with a well so we were a little apprehensive.  Of course, as you’d expect, fate had it in for us and it snowed twice.  We also had the first 3 day power outage in 30 years.  One nice neighbor brought us an oil lamp to use.  We were grateful.  Without power, it was dark in Creswell.  We were afraid of not having enough water for the, ahem, necessities of life, so we just frequented Ray’s and Bi-Mart more than we would have otherwise.  The snowy times were beautiful and we are hoping the snow returns again next year.  It was just enough, and not too much.  We can do without the power failures thank you very much.

We put a lot of miles on our car over the next few months driving back and forth.  We got a few threats of offers, but nothing ever came through.  We finally realized that our realtor was just a little overly optimistic at times.  One potential buyer considered converting our house into a convalescent home.  That was certainly a surprise idea.  We don’t have anything against old people and we even hope to be older someday, but we’d just always thought we’d sell our house to a nice young family who would amass years of memories to complement ours and those of my wife’s family before us.  However, we were getting anxious about having two mortgage payments.  Christmas came and went and still not one offer came through.  In the mean time, houses were selling all around us.  We started upping our prayer times.

 I don’t know if it was the prayers or just dumb luck, but we finally got an offer the second week of January.  To compound the whole thing the buyer wanted us out of the house by the end of the week.  We hadn’t moved completely and lots of our “stuff” was still in the house including all of our furniture.  Our panic changed from wondering how we’d ever sell the house to wondering how we’d ever get out in time.  Rather than a cute young family, our buyer was a 20-something rapper wannabe who was given the gift of our house as a reward for being a good kid for last two years.  And, no, we don’t have any idea what that means.  We don’t even want to imagine. So with brief thoughts of, “it must be nice to have rich grandparents”, and, “omigod what’s going to happen to our house” we signed the papers.  My amazing wife somehow got us moved out during the next week while I quickly retreated back “home” to Creswell.   As I drove back I kept hearing those Wizard of Oz Winkies in my head singing “We’re not only really moving we’re really most sincerely moving.”  My wife flew back at the end of the week.  We were here!

Leave a Reply