When I first moved to Gone West almost six and a half years ago, I spent my evenings and weekends walking all around the adjacent neighborhood (my building was not exactly in a neighborhood). I walked for miles to the north and east, where the pretty houses are.
In the last year of living in Gone West, I've barely had time for the walking. I had work, and bjj, and franticness.
Lately, though, I am spending my days working alone on my computer, and so I go to the tea place every day. I sit here for four or more hours, working, and then I give up my table and go for a walk for an hour.
I walk further north than I have ever gone on foot, and further east, into neighborhoods of huge, stately houses, and neighborhoods of tiny, square houses.
It's different, to walk among the houses, than it is to drive by on major streets. I notice, walking, that there are two identical houses on the same block. I notice that house where the lawn grows long and firewood is stacked in the back. I notice the roofers carrying equipment up their ladder.
I have plenty of time to think about what I like in a house: big windows, brick, Craftsman squares.
A friend of mine described Gone West as a hobbit town, and sometimes that feels true, especially in the spring and summer, when all the cozy little houses are surrounded by greenery practically to their roofs.
I have a serious house craving. I want to buy one. I want to decorate one.
Too bad I just spent all of my money driving across the country twice, for no reason but to ascertain what I already knew.