I spent a recent afternoon looking at apartments. CHICAGO apartments. Online. (Damn, the world has changed significantly since I first struck out on my own.) I justified it by telling myself that we needed to be sure that the amount we were calculating for housing would work. It's an amount we can afford even if I don't have an income right away*.
So far I have discovered an online apartment rating system and a really useful online rental site. And on that site I located 83 apartment buildings I would be willing to live in. The entire process was made much faster by two things:
1) Three cats, which narrows the field significantly right away, and
2) The discovery that even looking at a building that is more than four stories high as a possible living space makes me hyperventilate. Seriously. My blood pressure increase, my breathing speeds up, my heart starts pounding in my chest, I get all tense and start making little squeaky noises. Any ideas at how many neighborhoods that sort of thing cuts out? Lots.
I mentioned this to our ASM last night during rehearsal and she said, "Well, couldn't you live on the second or third floor of a tall building? And then she got to witness firsthand my reaction to the idea of living in a high rise. "No," she said. "Obviously not."
Dave thinks I'm being silly, but since I'm going to have to live there at least four months longer than he will (a December 2009 graduation date is now assured, by the way), I get to be as silly as I like over these things. My silly wins.
Anyway, I was getting all excited about the apartment hunt, as opposed to overwhelmed like I had been. At least now I won't be jumping into it cold. And then I thought, “You need to slow down, Sal. You've got quite a while to wait.” Which is when I decided to actually figure out how much time I have left in this horrible place.
Three and a half months.
That's it. My time in Moscow finally--finally--has an expiration date. And now I'm scared and excited and worried and jubilant and exhausted and overwhelmed and grinning like a fiend. Because I'm not going to spend the rest of my life here. I have a new place to be, and soon I'll have a home there.
* Please, please, Chicago Community College System, see me for the shining star I am and hire me. Though I suppose that means I need to apply, doesn't it. Lazy cow.