Saturday, September 10, 2011

Househunters International starring ... us!

Today we starred in our own private episode of Househunters International. It's not quite as fun being the star of this show as you might think. We kept having to remind ourselves that we were flat-shopping in SCOTLAND, and how cool is that?? The level of stress involved was absurd, especially when we remember that we actually have to LIVE in our choice -- not just make good TV.

We'd narrowed it down to two flats, both with private landlords who seemed eager to rent to us -- a welcome relief from the horrible agencies who stood us up or didn't return phone calls.

Choice #1: The slightly-above-our-original-budget, but gorgeous, 2-bedroom flat in a lovely, charming neighborhood just outside the city centre. Bright, spacious, well-equipped, with lots of room. Kind private landlord who returns calls and seems to care about his property. 3rd floor flat, which means 4th-floor-walkup in American terms. David would have to take a bus to school, but the neighborhood is great. Recommended as the superior place to live by several friends who are long-time Edinburgh residents.

OR

The smaller, but still spacious, one-bedroom, not-so-nice apartment located ... on the Royal Mile. Only half a mile from the University, in the Old Town, and a nice private landlord. A bit less expensive, despite its central location, and David would not have to take the bus to school. Also more enticing, it's a 1st floor-flat (that's 2nd-floor-walkup-American), but still it's in the busiest and noisiest, most tourist, part of town. Right in the heart of everything, but then ... it's right in the heart of everything. Uneven floors, icky kitchen with electric stove (I'm a gas-stove snob), and half-painted walls. A medieval building, so that's neato, but then currently covered by scaffolding. And dangerously close to the Baked Potato Shop.

Basically, it's do we want to live in the middle of the tourist/castle/Old Town in a less-nice place? Or do we want to blend in as Edinburgh residents for a year, avoid tourists, live a bit more comfortably and pay a bit more for a much nicer, bigger place? Do we want to live as students or as grownups? Torture!

What did we decide? And will it even work out? Stay tuned after this commercial break...

In the mean time, enjoy this photo of a Baked Potato with vegetarian chili and cheddar cheese.

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