If you’ve been following my adventures for the past few months, you know that I have been house and pet-sitting for my friends, George and Jo, whom I met in Montevideo, Uruguay, who live here in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Every month has brought a new surprise. I’ve often done house and pet-sitting in Brazil, South Africa, and Albuquerque, but this assignment has been the biggest of all….. and it’s getting bigger all the time. In early February, I took on three dogs, one cat, and a ninety-three-year-old granny, Marian, to look after while my friends went to California for work. One month into my three-month assignment, Marian died in her sleep. I wrote about her illness and death a few blogs back, describing the hard work of that period as equivalent to running six marathons in forty-eight days.
Well now, I’m involved in running my seventh marathon of the year! I’m helping my friends to move permanently to California where employment demands them to live for at least two more years. So, they’re putting this house up for sale, leaving me to prepare it for real estate showings and to either sell, or get rid of, everything that they haven’t already boxed up during their last visit home. In a few weeks, they’ll return to truck the pets and their possessions to a new apartment in Sacramento.
Well, I’ve managed to get to this advanced age without ever having to even organize a yard sale, let alone, empty a house and stage it for real estate viewing. This is a new twist on the concept of house-sitting! Plus, I’m a stranger in the area and don’t know any of the resources, contacts, and consignment shops used by those who suddenly downsize drastically. Help! However, George has absolute faith in my ability to do this job flawlessly. All by myself!
Enter, a brilliant solution….. thanks to a new piece of my wardrobe, bought on a whim at my recent Writing Retreat at a Yoga Center called Body, in Santa Fe. By the way, my new book manuscript (my fourth book now) passed the stringent review that Tom Bird gives it during his all-important Soul Read; and it is now moving on through the production process. It should be published by September. But, back to the weird story of how my new pants saved my skin on this house-sitting assignment.
I’ve suddenly become an unexpected member of “THE SISTERHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS” and my new trousers have saved everything! Now what does that have to do with selling this house? Strange and amazing things occur when you spend $120 on a pair of absolutely divine and stylish, flair-legged, black, pin-striped, swishy pants and then wear them around town with your black cowgirl boots. Women give you compliments! Every time I wear them, total strangers tell me how great they look, and, one day, a lady wanted me to come into a consignment shop and show her friend. Once inside, a gal named Charley Davis also got into the pants conversation and I learned that she runs a business to help people pack up their stuff and move across country.
Bingo! Did I ever have a job for her!
Luckily, George and Jo were still in town and they hired her to do a professional job for them. So, we are now heavily-involved in doing this work together – cleaning, culling, planning a yard sale for next weekend; and rearranging their furniture for photographs and for staging. Today’s photos below will show you how that’s going!
Now, what does this have to do with a yurt? In addition to a three-car garage, this property has a most beautiful and enormous yurt, used for meetings and dancing. It’s only a few steps up the hill but surrounded by forest privacy. So, if you’re looking for a large three-bedroom, two-bath house, with inside office space, and two occupied, income-producing, rental units; as well as a detached place to set up an art or hobby studio or hold gatherings, such as yoga classes, study groups, or many sorts of professional activities……as well as lots of parking….. then look no further.
Come to the “City Different,” Santa Fe, New Mexico! This house is slightly out in the country, in the bedroom community of Eldorado, where views of rolling hills, forests and mountains stretch forever. But, it takes only fifteen minutes to drive to the lovely Santa Fe downtown plaza. It’s a very, very, very quiet location. And the stars shine brightly at night with no city lights to interfere.
Price is available on request from Realtor, Andy Ault, of Keller Williams Realty, 505-946-2144 or [email protected]
Stay tuned for pictures of the yurt in my next post. AND, of my famous traveling pants! Tell all your friends! This beauty won’t last long! BTW, Santa Fe is the clean-air capital of the world!
My daughter and family drove to Cedar City, Utah, for the holiday and dropped me off in New Mexico on the way. So, Thanksgiving Day found me settling into my new apartment in Santa Fe, after spending the month of November in Denver with them. We had just experienced five delightful weeks of our annual togetherness.
Now, in lieu of constant world travel, I’m renting in an apartment complex which is used in the summertime to house people who work for the Santa Fe Opera Company. During the winter, these one and two-bedroom units can be rented out on a month-to-month basis through March. I love the little town of Santa Fe and have always wanted to get to know it better, as I did Aspen, Colorado, a few years ago. I was here for two weeks in October when I found this apartment and started my explorations of this historic place. Now, I’m eager to continue my love affair with this sweet, most unusual city. It feels like being out on the world trail…..but, everyone speaks English here. This place does, and doesn’t, feel like most towns in the U.S.
Santa Fe is much more wonderful in a universal way. Most buildings are made of adobe. It’s very Native American, being within an easy drive to three Indian Reservations; and it’s also very Hispanic, being right above Mexico.
My hairdresser today said: “Santa Fe will either embrace you or spit you out!”
Wow! I’m hoping for the embrace!
Something is going on, culturally, all over town, every day and every night. I devour the newspaper’s calendar of events, noting everything that is a must-see/must-do but, so far, I haven’t done a thing! I worked so hard setting myself up in the apartment; making many walking trips to the nearby shopping center (Whole Foods & Trader Joe’s, loads of restaurants, beauty salons, banks, a dollar store, two pharmacies, and a great thrift shop) and I was always just too pooped to locate the bus stop and go into town. I even bought a thrift shop secretarial chair and a build-it-yourself desk to do my serious writing. Pushed the rolling chair home, but hired a taxi to bring the disassembled desk the few blocks. Now, I’m hoping to pass the Handyman Test. Soon, I’ll post a picture of the finished result.
The photos below will give you a look at the first blush of Home. Initially, you’ll see how it greeted me. All the necessaries in very good condition, except not very colorful. I just whisked some South American, Ecuadorian, touches out of my suitcase….a double hammock for the sofa and a great, red, tablecloth for the dining set. A few cute candles, a woven basket on the coffee table….. and, voila! Personality! Took ten minutes! Or less! I’m “At Home!”
Please come in……
Oh, the cast on my left hand (dog bite) is long gone by now. The hand is still swollen but is healing very well.
Come on over! The Weather’s gorgeous! Just bring your hammock!
I’m going to get lots of colorful candles too because we can’t build fires in the fireplace. But, we can fill it with lots of burning candles. I actually like that a lot better! A glass of wine by the candlelit fireplace on a snowy night! I told you this place was different! Like an alternate Universe.
(The After-Picture keeps jumping ahead of the Before-Picture. So Be It! Color trumps all!)