A lot has happened in the past month, hence being MIA on the blog. I’ve been in shock or depression or both, or really just so overwhelmed that with any down time, all I’ve wanted to do is crawl into bed and rest.
We lawyered up and went into mediation to settle a real estate dispute. For four hours, we sat in an office while the mediator (a retired judge) bounced back and forth, talking to the plaintiff (us) and the defendant separately. Mediation should be a case study in Negotiation 101. Each party has their bottom line figure, and it’s the mediator’s job to get us to come to a resolution before time is up! Thankfully, “The matter settled on terms acceptable to all parties.” I didn’t want to go through this whole rigmarole. The legal system scares me (queue the music to the Serial podcast) and I freaked out that we would end up paying for a lawyer and losing our case. But I have to give credit to Dean who insisted that justice would prevail once we pushed through. Sadly, in order for justice to prevail you have to have the money to pay for a lawyer. Either that or I guess get a public defender, or find someone who will take up your case pro bono? Seems like it’s very easy for people of power (i.e., nail salon owners, Bill Cosby, slumlords) to take advantage of those without means or resources.
We closed on a new home, no thanks to my chosen lender. The transaction was so delayed and so traumatic, I can’t even say the lender’s name without wincing and telling everyone who will listen, STEER CLEAR! THEY SUCK! We closed one week past our contractual date, and I had to dial for dollars to make that even happen. I figured one week was more than enough time to have appliances delivered, schedule movers…yet it came down to the wire. We signed title at 5pm and had movers scheduled to come at 8am the following day. It wasn’t pretty, but we got it done. Thanks to Oasis Moving Company for quickly and efficiently moving us from SF to Alameda in 7 hours. They charged $100/hour for 3 movers and a 24-foot truck, plus $20 for gas. $720 total. No extra charge for mileage, stairs, tax, etc. Chinese movers are the best!
We found tenants for our place in SF, and have decided to maintain that 2-unit property as a rental (versus selling). Based on our open houses, there are cool people who live in or want to live in the city. Sure there is a strong contingent of techies, but I still believe that SF city dwellers are hard-working, talented and most importantly diverse (both culturally and socio-economically).
On top of the move, I went into my busy season at work with the ritual of waking up at 4am once every quarter to get into the office to report earnings. I’m also suffering from sea sickness, commuting by ferry. I’ve done every natural remedy short of taking medication (Dramamine or the Scopolamine patch). The Sea-Bands worked, then they didn’t. I read that your body can get acclimated to them at which point they’re useless, which seems to have happened to me. It’s quite unnerving coming into work, feeling nauseus/hungover, with that condition not going away until a good night’s rest. Then it was back on the ferry again in the morning. I’ve reverted back to taking the bus and train to work. I’m waiting for the Relief Band—which emits an electrical pulse to your wrist—to arrive from Amazon. Will try that and see how that goes. If that doesn’t work, it’s on to the patch for me, but wary that a potential side effect is drowsiness. Not sure how that is going to jive when I’m supposed to be productive at work! If anyone has any thoughts or feedback, I would love to hear.
Lastly, on a bright note, my dad and I celebrated our birthdays belatedly (his 70th; my 40th) with about 50 family members at our new home. It was sponsored by our real estate agent Carol Brubaker who cooked up a whole spread of sirloin burgers, chicken and pork dogs, teriyaki chicken, grilled veggies, baked beans, potato salad, deviled eggs, spinach salad with beets/feta/bacon, watermelon, grapes, pickles, olives and lots of wine. We also had Filipino food—lumpia, pancit, suman—and ice-cream cake. Can’t go wrong with ice-cream cake! The party was truly epic!