What A Long Strange Trip It’s Been


Subject: What A Long Strange Trip It's Been

Date: Thu, 10 May 2001 16:32:21 -0700

It was a dark and stormy day when we started moving into our new house.

Friends arrived at about 10am to assist with the packing and moving of the artifacts of our life. While we only intended to pack the posessions of our lifes, those helping us chose to move the boxes to the new house.

The rain came down in sheets, wetting the ground and turning the road into a muddy slope. A minivan carrying a goodly collection of boxes, driven by the brave Maryanne Grace, arrived at the top of the driveway and began to slide backwards. It appeared that the rain had managed to make the driveway an unpassable hurdle for this vehicle. By carefully backing down and making a running start, she made it over the top. This became the way for the other drivers to conquer the driveway, a running start from the bottom, followed by a quick left turn and application of the brakes.

Many trips were done over the course of the day, and most of the boxes which were being packed in the old house were succesfully moved to the new house. Jeeps and other 4wd vehicles did better than minivans. My little Toyota Camry wagon did quite well with the running start method. The house was still un-finished. Most of the boxes were moved directly from the cars to the garage.

On March 1, 2001, just 17 days short of our 17th anniversary in the house on Maryearl Ln., we closed escrow and moved out.

We would not be able to live in the new house until the driveway was paved.

The driveway would not be paved for another 8 days.

Paving the driveway was limited by the weather. We were ready to pave the driveway in the middle of Febuary. The paving company would not do it until there had been 2 days of no rain, and then on the third day of no rain, they would be out to pave the driveway. This meant that it had to be dry for three days in a row and the third day had to happen on a week day. There were three times where the third dry day occured on a Saturday or a Sunday, followed by rain. I became a weather junky. I was watching three different web sites for weather updates, and learned that most weatherpeople don't have a clue what they are talking about.

In the course of being homeless, we discovered that there was 'one little thing' that the city needed us to do. They needed two reports from subcontractors on the job. One was for insulation, the other was for roofing. While I can understand that the insulation report would be needed, I mean, we could have built the house without it, but who would do that? Why they needed a report for the roofing, I don't know. They could walk up and see that we had a roof installed.

When we presented these two reports, they then informed us that 'one little thing' was missing. It appeared that we had not prepaired an easement for an open space set aside for the City of Poway. The heartless fiends would not let us move in until this piece of paper had been written and approved by the city. This open space easement required that we get a new title report for our engineer to use to write up the easement.

Getting a title report at this time was crazy. This was because interest rates had just been lowered and people were refinancing like there was no tomorrow. We were quoted a two week time line to getting the title report. We begged the title company to hurry it along and they managed to do it in five days. Having an old title report, eleven years old to be specific, helped a lot.

After the title report was done, the engineer signed and stamped the open space easement and we gave it to the city. The city then gave us the permission to move into the new house.

It took 28 days to finish the paperwork for the city. While some of this was our fault, the city could have told us that we needed the open space set aside earlier.

We have been in the house since March 28th. The first night here was exciting and wonderful. On the first Sunday after we moved in, my parents came by with a bottle of 1992 Dom Perignon Champagne. A wonderful way to start living in a new house.

Plato said that every man should build a house in his lifetime. Frank Lloyd Wright said that every man has a house inside him. I've built my house. It took 11 years. Almost to the day. We purchased the property back in March of 1990, we started grading in early February of 2000 and took possession on March 28, 2001.

There were times during the eleven years when we just wanted to toss it, sell the land and purchase "someone else's custom." But the thought would pass and we just kept waiting. We have kept true to our dream. We finished what we begun.


David Barto

From a Marketing type:

Don't give me any technical reason why something can't be done.

If you really believed in the product you'd make it work.

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