Friday, February 24, 2012

Yellow house on the hill

Moving day was two weeks ago, and if moving house wasn't excitement enough I have also had two job interviews and started a temporary position (one month of full time work at the very end of a contract). They contacted me with an email that arrived just after the movers departed, and I felt very accomplished to have moved house and lined up work all before 11am. Around noon on the same day I got a call asking me to come in and interview for a permanent position at the University, this particular job is in "dream job" territory for me, and little fireworks started going off in my brain. I was (barely) sensible enough to request that we interview on Monday, not the very next day, giving me the weekend to locate a suitable outfit in the boxes labeled "Rosie's clothes". At least we were sensible enough to mark the clothes boxes "his" and "hers".

The house:


Classic 1970's "ranch style" California house. I like the cheerful yellow and white. We are almost at the top of a hill, you can see the fence at the top of the neighbour's property, and our lot actually extends a tiny bit further and includes a sliver of the top of the hill. It's very steep and the soil is sandy loam so at present all we can do is slither up, admire the view of the valley, pick our way down carefully, then knock the sand out of our shoes. There will be terracing once we learn more about landscaping and come up with a plan. The front lawn has held up rather well for being neglected for a couple of months, if this had been summer it would be dead from lack of water. I have seen a gopher in his burrow (grrr) in the back yard, a bunny (no warren) in the front yard, geckos skittering across the tree branches, magpies and crows trying to nab a gecko, and lots of little sparrow-ish birds I have yet to identify. No hummingbirds though. I will have to plant some hummingbird-attractant plants, I love watching them zoom about.

We get morning sun for about an hour coming in the front windows, and a little evening sun through the kitchen window on the side of the house, but overall there is little direct sun. It's an adjustment from our flat, which got sun almost all day through the side windows, but the place is still bright because we're in California. I suspect a similar place in Edinburgh would be quite gloomy.

Here we see Marble (left) and Taliesin (right) checking out the view from the dining room window. This was on the first morning when they were still trying to figure out what on earth was going on.


They seem to have settled in quite well. Lots of cuddles and reassurance from their pet humans, a regular supply of kibble, and interesting bird life out the windows make for happy cats. Tali loves playing peekaboo through the decorative wooden screen that separates the dining room from the living room, and made a bonus discovery that he can perch in one of the gaps and get the benefit of the electric convection heater beneath him.

Smugness incarnate:


The fly in the ointment: discovering surprise! water damage (with bonus black mold) in the kitchen, which means installing the dishwasher we brought with us from the flat is going to end up costing $2,000 for wall repair and half a new kitchen. Of course, had we not brought the dishwasher with us, we'd have been ignorantly adding to the water damage every time we ran the older, poorly installed model that came with the house.

Monday, February 06, 2012


Movers are scheduled to arrive first thing on Thursday, which means everything has to be in a box by the end of Wednesday. I think it was a little ambitious to think I could prepare to move inside two weeks while recovering from bronchitis.