I usually don't go into the weeds about personal matters on the blog, but I have to confess that, in retrospect, the past four weeks have been pretty stressful- my landlord just sold the three family home in which I have been renting an apartment for the past ten years. My neighborhood is pretty close-knit, so I figured I'd check out the local businesses for flyers advertising apartments for rent, and I asked a few local merchants to keep an ear to the ground for me. Meanwhile, I have been accumulating boxes so I can pack up my belongings in preparation for a move.
As luck would have it, I found an ad on Craiglist for an apartment that only costs twenty dollars more a month than my current place. The ad was posted six days ago, and I met with the landlady last Friday and we exchanged contact information. She called me back on Saturday and I gave her the phone numbers for my two main references- my current landlord and my supervisor at work.
Today, I signed the lease and obtained the keys to the apartment. I have a full two weeks to move, and I won't need any more boxes to accomplish this. This place is all of six blocks away from my current address. It's even closer to the Bronx border (and the Woodlawn subway station) and the famous pubs of McLean Avenue than my current place. Despite that, it's a quieter street, a one-way residential street rather than the relatively high-trafficked street by the local K-12 school on which I currently reside.
Of course, there is a bittersweet note- my upstairs neighbors are moving out tomorrow morning to a home they own in South Carolina. The mom was able to take all of her accumulated days off preparatory to retiring, dad has to put in a couple more years with the NYC government, and will be moving a few blocks east to the Wakefield section of the Bronx. They've been really great neighbors, and I will miss them. Tomorrow, I will let the neighbors next-door and across the street that I will be moving, but I will still be local.
I consider myself lucky, I found a comparable place in the same neighborhood, a neighborhood I love immensely. I'm keeping the same zip code, and probably the same letter carrier... I don't even have to find a new 'local'.