Wednesday, 28 October 2009
Laura's Virtual Honesty Tour
I've been considering a move to Va. and have been looking around for a house. My sister lives in a nice area of Chesapeake. I would prefer a private house rather than a townhouse or condo, but of course there's only so much house one can buy on a nurse's meager income. I have been preapproved for a mortgage which back in the day could have put me into the home of my choosing. Not today. Not in Virginia Beach. Maybe in Florida. So I turned my attention to the boonies of Chesapeake and the burbs of Norfolk. I talked to a Realtor friend of Laura's, and she arranged for automatic e-mailings of listings specific to my 'wants'.
A couple of days ago, I received several listings. One caught my eye. An adorable and affordable little house in South Chesapeake, Va. I could see it had a nice yard with a garden area and a play area for kids, not that I have any but you never know. I had checked out the area from the Google's Birds-eye perspective, and was a bit leary of being so close to the tracks and those large oil storage tanks. Wierd. Panning out, you can actually fly around the neighborhood, zoom in on people's backyards. The neighborhood seemed clean enough, albeit a few cars in yards, some junk here and there. Kind of seedy and in some spots, not sure WHAT I was looking at. So on her way home from work today, my sister Laura, who calls just about every day at this time, typed the address into her GPS and headed over for a look-see.
I had her on the cellphone, and also had the area on Google Birds-eye, so I could actually peer into people's backyards, from about 70 yards away. I asked her to give me an idea of the area; what she was seeing and of course I didn't have to ask her to be honest or descriptive.
G: So are you almost there?
L: (still on the highway) There's a black man with a blue face.
G: WHAT? WHERE?
L: Walking down the road.
G: He has a BLUE face?
G: Like one of those very dark skinned people. It's not really blue. Just very dark.
L: No. It's blue... You know how white people go brown? Well this black dude went blue. Must be for the series. PAINTED IT."
G: OH...he PAINTED it blue.( There was that one guy who took some med or something and actually turned his skin blue)
She turns into the neighborhood.
L: OK, there's a lady with no teeth.
G: You can see that close?
G: What else?
L: Four white children with floods on, and the one is running around with wax teeth. Wax. Halloween teeth. These people are really into decorating for Halloween. oh this is not really...OK, here's the house. Oh, It's really cute. It's got a nice walkway.
G: Tell me about it.
L: It's a nice house, but the area is sort of depressed. You know, poverty. OK, there's a drainage gully in the front yard. The house next door is cuter. Cleaner looking yard. Nice houses in a bad area.
G: Well, what else do you see?
L: OK, well there's a billboard that reads "Be Sexy".
L: It's for a Halloween Store. But it's as big as those Johnny Walker Red one's in NYC. Uh, I don't think you'd like this place at all. There's these men burning things over there.
G: Oh. I see.
L: I know my neighborhood's not the best. I'm not delusional AT ALL, but...Gina, this place is like, it's like (reacting to a statue) the MASONS.
L: There's this big statue of a MASON with a big FEZ on his head holding a handicapped child. I guess that's the cause."
G: Ah...the MASONS. Right.
L: There's a black man burning something.
G: Well I like the smell of wood burning in Autumn.
L: I don't know if it's wood or garbage.
G: Oh...so what's your impression?
L: I'd be afraid. I'd be very afraid. For real. You'd definitely have to get a rifle. And sleep with it."
G: So, not good.
L: THe WHOLE area smells like farts. SMELLS LIKE FARTS. Imagine inviting your family over and the place smells like farts? It's located on the cusp of an industrial wasteland, spewing out fart odor 24/7. NASTY. You don't wanna live there GinaM, and to be honest, I'd never want to come visit if you lived there. It's just a very depressed area. Poverty. It's really sad. You don't need to succumb to that. You sure don't, and I am sure your realtor has not seen this one or she would direct you away from it.
G: I guess not. OK. Thanks, Laur. I appreciate your honest opinion. Onto the next!