We've always had a full house. In fact, when we lived in SC we had five dogs, but the difference was that we had room for five dogs. Not to mention, three of the five were technically classified as "miniatures." So, we had more like 3 and a half. Now, we have one less dog, but are struggling with the space and it's not just that: taking four dogs out to the bathroom each morning takes me half an hour. We don't have a yard so I go down to the cycling trail every morning and relieve everyone. Thankfully, I can take Hermione and Otis together which cuts down on the time, but this has become a bit much. I love my dogs and love spending time with them, but it makes it difficult to get anything done when I'm taking dogs out four to five times a day at half an hour every time. That adds up. That doesn't even include the walks that I take them on.
I actually don't really want to move. It seems like that's all I've done in the last four years. I can't seem to stay in one place for longer than a year; it's a bit ridiculous to be honest, but we need a bigger place with a yard. It's not just the going out that is a problem. The dogs like to have puppy battle time and our place just isn't big enough. It would be different if I could just take them out into a yard to have their royal rumble time, but I can't even do that. I certainly take them down to the trail, but the cyclists don't care if they run you or your dogs over and so I am worried that someone is going to get hurt. People have also made a habit of dumping every kind of garbage you can think of down there and half of the time I don't know if they are eating things. You should see what's down there-couch cushions, burned out scooters, rappers, alcohol containers, rotten food. Once, there was even a garbage bag full of wet, gross clothes.
Our lease is up at the end of June as well as our gym membership and so it seems like the perfect time to look for a new place.
And we've found somewhere.
Tomorrow we will be hopping a train to a little outlying area to look at a two bedroom house with a yard. Despite it being outside of the city limits, getting into the city centre will be at least the same level of difficulty or perhaps even easier. I'll know better tomorrow, but from what I can tell it will actually be easier. The place we are looking at is less than half a mile from the train station which is totally walkable. The train goes directly into the city centre which means that I am only a ten minute walk from the university campus. Since the bus takes me about half an hour and I never know if the drivers are going to let me know when my stop is, the train may be a better mode of transportation anyway. Trains always stop at the same stops which means I will always know where I am. Also, the train trip seems to be shorter than the bus ride, even though it is further out.
There are grocery stores, leisure facilities, shopping venues Etc in the new area as well. It is also a coastal town and so there are plenty of beaches for the dogs to go play on. I've talked briefly with someone who lives there and she says that it has great walks and most people are friendly and responsible dog owners. It seems like an all around good idea, but I guess we'll see tomorrow when we get there. In some ways I guess we're moving because we're crazy animal people and have quite a few, but in another I think we're moving for ourselves too.
I think it's hard moving from a place where you used to live in houses all of your life with big yards and green space that was yours to squishy tenement buildings where most people aren't very friendly. I had always thought that living in apartment style housing would be good because you would meet people, but not so much. We're also having problem where someone in the building smokes and tends to do it out in the hallway. The smell filters into our flat and makes both Mr. K and I very congested.
With all of that in mind, if this house doesn't work out, I think we're prepared to stay here if we have to, but we both hope that come July we'll have our own patio and yard. I also wouldn't mind getting this house because it has a fireplace which would be nice on those cold, damp Scottish evenings, but of course we wouldn't take it just because of that. :) Are we crazy? Yeah, pretty much, but if I do end up doing a PhD, living in a house with a yard, in a quieter neighbourhood wouldn't be such a bad idea. Mr. K is going to London in a year to complete his Master's degree and if I do my PhD, I'm staying here. This means that I'd like to be in a bit more of a residential area. The building we're in now has been broken into three times since we moved in and although I think we're safe, I would feel more comfortable in a more community oriented area. but, as it's all up in the air, I will leave it at that for now and fill you in on the details of our trip tomorrow.