Saturday, March 4, 2017

House hunting

Since I arrived to Italy on a Tuesday, I missed the cut off for the beginning of the briefings provided by work about Italy and requirements/paperwork/work that I had to accomplish. My first week was spent searching online for an apartment or house and a car. I felt like I was trying to accomplish mission impossible! Many people who also moved to the area were house hunting just as I was. I found at least 5 places but when I called the realtors they all said the places were taken or occupied. My options were not the best for what was available in the region. I finally made an appointment to look at 2 different places with one being an apartment and the other a house. I had my sponsor drive me since I didn't have a car  at that time. We arrived to Roveredo earily and I called the realtor... come to find out that I was in the wrong place! The area has many streets with similar names. The apartment I looked at online was not in Roveredo, but in the city of Pordenone! Luckily we only had to drive an extra 10 minutes. We managed to find a random parking space. I was about to call the realtor when she pulled in the spot next to us (pretty convenient right?) What was not convenient was the fact that the apartment was too far from my work, had no garage included, and was in the middle of the city. I come from a small town and do not want to live in a city if I could help it. I enjoy visiting cities but with all the people I feel claustrophobic. The apartment was not all that bad and was fully furnished, yet the location was not ideal. Now going off subject a bit, I have to mention a few things about the realtor. She was a busy women and was straight to the point. The reason I say this is because she was on her phone the whole time. It seemed like everyone and their grandmother was calling her (about houses of course). She seemed very preoccupied and rushed...I told her that the apartment was not what I was looking for and thanked her for her time. Before we parted ways she mentioned that she had an appointment with a client at 1530 in the same area where I was going to go to look for a place. We both realized at that same moment that my next appointment I had was with her! She looked me up and down at that moment and said that the house I was going to look at next was not fitting for me. She did not mean it in a bad way. What she was saying was that the house was big and old, better for a large family. I didn't realize the house had 4 bed rooms...I was just trying to pick any reasonable place within the budget at that point. I asked her if she had anything else available. Her eyebrows went up, closed her lips in a straight line, and her eyes looked up to the right with a look saying that no guarantees were promised. She sat down on the small table in the narrow kitchen overlooking the center of Pordenone. She briefly showed me a couple pictures on her cell phone of 3 different places and I instinctively picked the first one. Again she wore the expression of no guarantees and said that the landlord accidentally broke the keys to the place. She tried calling the landlord without success. Mara (the realtor) said we could start driving to Porcia (pronounced pohrcheeah)and hope that the landlord would call her back by the time we got there.  David (my sponsor) and I got in the car and started following Mara. She also mentioned that we were also making a detour so she could pick up keys from someone. We stopped in a shady area where a man walked out of no where and gave Mara some keys through her window. Already this was by far the strangest experience I have had in a while. We made it to the apartment and just as Mara was saying that we should just meet up another day, the landlord called. We waited for the landlord and she walked up with a new set of keys freshly made. We walked up the stairs on the side of the apartment building to the second story and walked in through the forest green door. My jaw dropped; the inside of the apartment was beautiful. The apartment had a small kitchen, one bedroom, one bathroom, and a loft up the stairs. The place was fully furnished with stylish chairs, beds, and kitchen utensils. We also looked at the garage which was underground. Even though this was the second apartment I looked at, I said that I would take it. I was lucky because I was the first person to see the place since it became available the day before. It was by chance that the keys were broken. I believe God had a hand in this. We agreed to meet up in 2 days to fill out the contract. Walking back to the car I couldn't believe that I found a place to call home.

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