On the day we married, I told B I was thrilled to have adventures with him for the rest of our lives. I probably should have been a little more specific about the "adventure" part.
In truth, I'd actually love a peaceful, ordinary, non-insane January, February and March. In 2014, we were wrapping up the wedding planning (and B was frequently traveling to Dallas for one- and two-week clips for work). In 2015, we were trying to do all that was involved to get our behinds to France, including packing, cleaning, visa meetings, and other intercontinental insanity (and B traveled to Dallas for one- and two-week clips).
And 2016? Well, in 2016, we spent January and the bulk of February cleaning and updating our condo to sell. We must've done a hell of a job. Last Wednesday, after being on the market for a whopping 4 hours, we received an offer on it - a good one. And, naturally, B has to go to Dallas next week for work.
You can say a lot of things about us, but we're certainly not boring. Life as a Stevenson is never boring. I haven't had a dull moment since I said "I do." The past 6 days have certainly been proof of that. So I thought I'd share the story.
Last Wednesday, our amazing (and amazingly patient) realtor Ellis was scheduled to come take photos of the condo to then list it. I beat her to our condo by about 15 minutes...and promptly realized I couldn't get the front door open. I leaned against it with all my weight, but it wasn't enough to force it to open. Something was caught, but I couldn't figure out what.
I called B in a panic. I think he thought I was crazy (okay, fine: he knows I'm crazy), but he agreed to come home from work to see what the problem was. In the meantime, Ellis showed up, and we just stood outside the house, waiting for him to get in - thankfully, it was sunny and had started to warm up. When B showed up, he couldn't get in, either (See?! I wasn't crazy!). Finally, throwing all 200 pounds of himself against the door, he managed to get it open. The hardware on the door frame had somehow gotten caught. There was no way I (or the realtor) could have gotten into the house myself, so I'm glad I called him.
On a side note, Luna loved our unorthodox entry into the house. Not.
So Ellis took the photos and left, saying she'd drop off a "For Sale" sign later, and let us know when the link was live. Meanwhile, an hour and a half later, I had an eye doctor appointment at 3:00 for him to take a look at my pinkeye. The receptionist had told me she could "work me in," so when the phone rang as I was driving to the eye doctor, popping up an 864 number, I assumed it was the eye doctor. I was simply hoping they weren't going to cancel on me.
Um, no. It was the first of many calls we would receive from the Berkshire Hathaway Home Services call center. Someone wanted to show our house at 5:00 that same evening. Frankly, it's lucky that I was going to the eye doctor. I hate talking on the phone, so I tend to not answer it if I don't recognize the number.
By the time the eye doc confirmed my pinkeye and I had gotten my prescription filled, two more people had called wanting to see the house on Thursday. I was overwhelmed, but at 4:45 I packed up the dog and went to Quest Brewery, one of the few indoor places in town I knew I could bring the dog.
An hour went by peacefully. B met me at Quest. We went home and cooked dinner. We sat side by side on the sofa reading. Our phones were charging upstairs.
I was the first to head upstairs to get ready for bed. Therefore, I was the first to see the email from our realtor: our 5:00 showing had made an offer on our condo at 5:30. For the full asking price. I screamed a couple of overexcited happy expletives downstairs, annoying B who only had a page or so to read (. But he came upstairs and looked at the email, too. We had an offer. We had an offer.
To add to the general insanity, the next day, Thursday, at lunch we were going to vote absentee, and then leave for Charleston for the launch party of Charleston Business Magazine (because being associate editor of two magazines is just too passe...apparently I needed three). Then we were going to spend the weekend with B's grandfather on Seabrook Island. We contemplated cutting our trip short and coming back on Friday, but decided to go ahead as planned.
The entire way down to Charleston, our phones rang. We lost track of how many showings our house had on Thursday (and a couple on Friday), but it was at least seven - I'm thinking closer to 10. We discussed the offer we had and the offer(s) we might potentially receive.
As we dropped Luna off at a boarding place in Charleston, our realtor called again. Another offer, although this one lower than the first. And she was expecting a third.
We went off to the launch party, a little anxiously. We had to respond to the first offer by 8:00 p.m., so I don't actually even remember the party. We both were checking our phones so frequently it appeared we each had a severe twitch. Finally, our realtor called and said that while a third person wanted to make an offer, they couldn't do it in time for us to respond to the first offer. We didn't want to risk this great offer, so we countered and they accepted. We were officially under contract after a whopping four hours of having our condo on the market.
All semblance of normalcy officially went out the window.
To add to our confusion was the fact that the potential third offer apparently had some...bathroom troubles. He sent our realtor an email saying he couldn't find a plunger in the bathroom but we definitely needed one. I think B summed it up best: "Who goes to a house for a showing and takes a dump and clogs the toilet?!" Our realtor said she laughed out loud at that. I'm pretty sure we're now officially the crazy clients she tells people about at cocktail parties.
Our cocktail party was over at 7:30, 8:00ish, and from there we walked hand-in-hand down East Bay Street for about a mile in the freezing cold. The only thing we said over and over and over again was, "What just happened?!"
I wasn't starving, but B was. We stumbled, in a fog, into Amen Street Fish & Raw Bar, where I celebrated with a frozen bellini with a shot of dark rum, and incredible blackened shrimp over cornbread, and B had a glass of red wine and some fantastic shrimp and grits. It was a fantastic restaurant with great service, but I barely remember anything about getting there and eating. We were in a hell of a haze.
Then we stumbled, still cold and in a fog, to Blossom, to continue celebrating, but this time with a glass of champagne and red velvet bread pudding (seriously, if you ever find yourself in Charleston, you must try this stuff). Then we ran to catch the shuttle back to our hotel.
The next morning, after not very much sleep at all, in room 106 of the Spring Hill Suites in Charleston, I signed the contract to sell our house, and B talked the front desk into scanning it to his email. It was official - we were in business.
I had a 9:00 meeting at Caviar and Bananas (also a must-eat in Charleston) so we set out for downtown. On the way, our realtor called again. I had forgotten to initial a change on page 2. So when we got to C&B, I got in line for coffee and breakfast, and B once again talked the manager into scanning this page for us.
My 9:00 meeting was late, which was actually a darn good thing. I was so jittery I spilled a large cup of coffee everywhere. And by everywhere, I mean everywhere. It was all across the table, in all four chairs, on my purse, on the two bags of coffee beans we'd bought, on my chocolate croissant, and on my shoes. I still have no idea how I managed this.
Thankfully, I had a great meeting with these two sources and did not spill anything on them or myself. The next couple of hours passed uneventfully, walking around downtown Charleston, taking pictures such as these before having lunch at HUSK (a third completely necessary must-eat in Charleston).
Lunch went uneventfully, after which we picked up Luna and made the drive out to Seabrook Island. It was a good choice. In my scattered, flustered, utterly overwhelmed state of mind, there is absolutely no better place in the world to be than Seabrook Island.
The lack of commercialization, traffic, or people in general, plus the relaxing pace of hanging with B's grandpa and hearing his stories was just what we needed. But as we sat on the sofa in the most well-lit living room I've ever been in, the phone rang. And rang. And rang. This buyer is definitely interested in buying this house, and fast - the general inspection was yesterday. The termite inspection is today.
In my dimwittedness, I somehow managed to spill red wine all over a white sofa and white carpet, and I then had a little fun with stain removal techniques before dinner. Blessedly, B's grandpa is extremely gracious and told me I wasn't the first that had done that by a long shot, and wouldn't be the last, either. Luckily, it all came out.
And just to cap off my stellar and graceful weekend, as we went to dinner on Saturday night, I opened the front door of B's grandpa's car on my right eye. I'm lucky I didn't break my glasses, which I was still wearing because of the pinkeye. As it is, I have a nice big lump on my right eyebrow.
To say we're both a little frazzled is an understatement. Assuming all goes well, this buyer wants to close on March 22. If you're at all the praying type, send a quick missive to the Man Upstairs that everything goes smoothly and we find somewhere decent to live, even temporarily until we can close on a new house.
This is not how we saw this going. My big fear was that we would find a house we loved (to buy), but wouldn't get much traffic on the condo. I was prepared for a wait. I made the mistake of telling God my plans, and oh, He's laughing now. So if the blog posts are a little erratic, or if you see me and I seem like I have no idea what planet I'm on, rest assured it's house nonsense and (hopefully) will resolve soon.
Life as a Stevenson, I tell ya. Never boring. And in a twisted sort of way, I love every minute of it.
E (& B)