- Lulu! Be Good!
- Condo Hunt Updates
Lulu! Be Good!
Yesterday I took Lisa horseback riding as it was my Christmas gift to her. She used to ride when she was a lot younger so she had experience. I, did not.
They had an area on their farm where we could see all the other animals and do things such as milk the goats, play with the pigs, etc. but after the hoseback ride we were quite tired, and it was quite cold outside so we didn’t. I was planning on milking the goats and filming it as an introduction to my next video (“I’m Tyler Cruz, I’m milking a goat, and welcome to TylerCruz.com).
We went for 2 hours. Lisa was on a male horse named Mischief who didn’t live up to his name; he was very well behaved and a good, obedient horse.
I, on the other hand, was on Lulu. Sigh. Lulu… what can I say about Lulu? She was a young horse and definitely had a strong… personality. We were surprised they gave her to me as she turned out to be quite a handful!
Below you can see us when we returned from our long trek back to the stable area.
… as you can see, I’m already facing the other direction. That’s Lulu for you…
In the very beginning Lulu kept stopping to try to eat. At first I thought she was going to be the infamous horse that always ignored a new rider and ate, but I learned to stop her from that, and soon we were back on track… for a while.
You see, Lulu has a thing where she doesn’t like any other horse behind her. She would kick if any horse start to come close. Seeing as we were a group of 5 (Lisa, Me, and three of the ranch owners/runners) and Lulu and I were in the middle, this didn’t bode well. Add to that the fact that Cecil, the main leader of the group, kept going behind me and purposely pissed Lulu off so that she’d go crazy, and you’ll note my… concern. It was all in good fun though.
Oftentimes the two horses behind me would be behind Lulu and I, but diagonally back on either side. Lulu would keep BOTH horses in line by continually weaving back and forth and turning her head to see and kicking them. Sigh. Lulu! Be good, Lulu!
There were two rather.. adventurous parts of the trek. The first was when we passed through a bit of tight trail in a forest. We had to get the horses to walk in the middle of all the large pools of water, rather than on the side of them where Cecil was afraid they could slip and fall. Horses are used to avoiding puddles and such, so it wasn’t easy. In fact, everybody had a bit of difficulty. However, seeing that I was on Lulu, this made it even more troublesome. She was going crazy and running through the heavy forest where there were a lot of branches. She was going so crazy and I was getting stuck in trees that I almost fell off! Somehow I had stayed on though, and then Lulu finally and simply, Lulu stopped. We managed, awkwardly at best, to finish the rest of the ‘shortcut’ and get back on the main trail.
Things were going well again, aside from Lulu’s bullying of the other horses, when Cecil, the pack leader, decided to go for another shortcut. This was some shortcut… basically it was a very hilly area with a LOT of heavy shrubble and dead trees and pieces of sticks and logs and such. It was very treacherous and extremely hilly in some areas. We were all surprised, including the 2 other women that accompanied us (who were experienced ranchers no less!), that Cecil wanted to try this route. I was very concerned, but didn’t say anything as I always figure it’s good to try difficult things to build character, even though I’m pretty much a wimp.
For once, Lulu actually did a good job in this area. She went up a very steep and difficult hill rigged with traps and logs quite well. After a bit more awkwardness, our pack found out that somebody had felled a tree blocking our ‘shortcut’ back. So! We had to turn around, which was difficult enough, and then go back through all the denseness again! We all went back down the tricky hill, and luckily again, Lulu did a good job. Going down was rather fun, even, as you are at a pretty strange angle when atop the horse.
So we made our way back to the farm, which was when Cecil started to test Lulu’s patience.
Anyhow, it was fun, and I’d recommend trying horseback riding for anybody that hasn’t yet.
Condo Hunt Updates
I just got back a couple hours ago from another ‘tour’ with my realtor. We had looked at a couple places again. One was the townhouse I had mentioned in my last post, and another was a ‘new’ place.
We looked at the townhouse again so that I could get another look at it, as I had previously wanted to check out the room in it and see if my stuff would fit, and just check it out again before I made an offer on it. I noticed that they had put in brand new appliances in the kitchen, unlike what you saw in the photos I posted. It now has a brand new fridge, stove, and dishwasher. It’s amazing how much better a kitchen can look with new appliances. The stove really looks great.
I had noticed more things with the place this time around too. The wooden flooring at the entrance, for one. Upstairs was fine, but I must admit that the bathroom this time around quite scared me. It has a skylight in it which is nice, but it’s also rather odd as it goes wayyy up, where it almost resembles more of a chimney than it does a skylight. The toilet was also quite dirty which didn’t impress me. Sure, a new toilet or some elbow grease could do a lot, but still. Heh, I need to see a clean bathroom when looking at a place, even though the bathroom isn’t a main concern I look at when looking at a place. I definitely care about the kitchen the first and foremost, then the livingroom.
Anyhow, after looking at it a second time, I don’t think I’ll be putting in an offer. Something about the bathroom scares me, and I dunno, I think I’ll just wait.
The other place we looked at was a condo priced a bit out of my pricerange at $178,000. It’s been on the market for a bit over 2 months, so while I won’t be purchasing it right now, my realtor and I are going to keep an eye on it to see how long it stays on the market, and maybe make an offer when it hasn’t after 4 months.
It’s a fairly old building at 25 years old, but was recently resided and had renovations done to the building. The main downside to the place is that it is bottom floor and has a view of the parking lot, which my realtor hates. View is a major thing for him. The lobby is also pretty poor; it’s very small and basic, and the hallways are pretty basic and not all that aesthetically pleasing. The unit itself shows it’s age, with outdated things such as dishwasher etc.
However, those are the just the downsides. The unit itself is quite surprising actually. Here are the upsides:
While it is somewhat dated, that is also a good thing. It means there is a lot of potential for good resale value with modest updating and renovating. The unit is 1200 square feet which is massive. Most apartments, even ones that cost half a million dollars here, are in the 900-square-foot range. The added square footage really does make a difference.
As soon as you enter the unit you almost gasp; it is such a unique and large design that it most definitely differs from the vast majority of most condos. There’s two sets of stairs; the first leads you to a landing which splits off into two directions. The one direction takes you to the bedroom area. There is only one bathroom which is ensuite and not all that great; I don’t really like the fact that guests and such have to enter the master bedroom just to wash their hands, for example. The master bedroom has a walkthrough closet which leads to the bathroom. Actually, scrap the previous statement – I forgot the bathroom had two doors, the other accessible from the hallway. However, a bathroom with two doors is somewhat scary as when guests are over you need to be sure that they are both locked…
The other bedroom is right next to the master, and there’s a ‘nook’ area next to that which could be used for a mini office or bookcase or something. If you leave the ‘bedroom area’ you are taken to a large livingroom, which has a fairly big fireplace. The livingroom is very large and open (the way I like it) and the current owner has a computer set up in one corner of the livingroom. The livingroom is open and connects to the kitchen which is also pretty big and also quite open (it wraps around to both sides of the livingroom).
The layout is unique and different because it doesn’t really feel like a condo. I guess it does in some ways, but with the numerous staircases and the large square footage you could easily forget. I think the place could look quite stunning if a lot of good and modern renovating was done. I’d have absolutely no idea how to do that though, nor would I want or be willing to do it myself. I’d hire a contractor to do it, but then where would I live? How long would it take? How much would it cost? Etc.
So, it’s too expensive for me at the current price with the only one bathroom (ensuite), and for my realtor, the fact that it’s groundfloor with a poor view. While driving to the other townhouse my realtor made a very low offer on it to the selling agent over the phone, which was rejected. So, we’ll see if this place is still unsold in a couple months, then maybe make another offer.
Until then, we’ll just have to wait and look for other prospects to hit the market. Hopefully I’ll meet with my mortgage broker again soon so we can go over the ‘numbers’ again and see what I can afford again.
Well, that’s all for now. Good luck and good earnings!