Monday, May 22, 2006

989 Elements Move-In - Once More Delayed

We've been put up in a hotel, because - surprise, surprise - our move-in date at 989 Elements has been delayed another 5 or 7 days (they are not sure how long we will be in limbo).

Let's make it clear I am not blaming the staff or anyone involved with the 989 Elements construction. As far as I know, the hold-up is via the Bellevue City Hall occupancy permits. I don't really know what that means, but the result is that my husband and I can put our belongings into our apartment, but we can't sleep there. In fact, we can't even enter our apartment without a 989 Elements leasing agent as chaperone.

In the meantime, this hotel, the Paragon, is a decent abode wherein we wait for the move; waiting, waiting once more. It's certainly nicer than the hotel we were provided when construction and move-in was delayed on the home we owned, once upon a recent time in Flagstaff, AZ.

The Paragon looks like a dive from the outside, but the inside has a nice feeling of faded and newly revisited luxury. More on this nice-on-the-inside hotel later.

In the meantime, I can look right out my balcony here...and gaze up to our intended 8th floor apartment across the street.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Urban Living - Power Washing Hell

You win some; you lose some. I have a love/hate affair with the Belle Arts Apartments. It's really just timing, but we all know (if you've been keeping up with this blog) I moved in from San Diego, the day after they tarped the building. That was not so good for my SAD situation. Then when the tarps came down, they turned the courtyard fountain on, the sun shone, and I was in love with Belle Arts.

Which is when the management decided to spend a week powerwashing the courtyard. I am all in favor of a clean courtyard and after-winter sprucing. However, it's taken four days long, loud days already and will continue tomorrow for a 5th. And then, sadly, I move out. Just when peace will finally reign here, someone else will be able to enjoy it. Why couldn't my short time here have been quiet enough - and untarped enough - to get some honest work done? [grumble, grumble]

All I have to say about power washers is they are loud. They make jet engine sound seem like a lullaby. And so, now the sound of power washers has joined the short list of intolerable urban noises; along with jack hammers, leaf blowers and car commercials. And remember, this is coming from a girl who doesn't mind the sound of traffic (it's white noise, like the ocean).

Here is a fragment of yesterday's email to the poor spouse, after being frazzled out from hours of power washing music: "But I can't stand that crazy loud noise of the power wash outside and must take off now. It's driving me CRAZY! crazy crazy crazy hahhahahahahaha must....kill...something.....crush...destroy....."

So, yep; that's me, crazy and incredibly irritated as we speak. Turn it off! Turn it off! Turn that frakking thing off. Some people are trying to work here....

Ah well; I guess city living isn't totally perfect. I will adjust. I hope the new apartment at 989 Elements will be a better work environment.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Belle Arts Courtyard Fountain

It's the little things that add up to a good life. Right now I am loving the Zen-inspired fountain within the Belle Arts Apartments inner courtyard, here in Downtown Bellevue.

When I first moved in to this studio, the one large window was completely covered in an opaque, white tarp. Made it look deeply overcast all the time; very depressing.

When the tarp came down, I could actually see a very pretty courtyard below. There were tall standing rocks, a few European-like columns, bushes, fruit trees in flower, tall and lush grasses and lovely slate tile.

And then, just a few days ago, the management deigned to turn on the fountain: I'm in love. It sounds very romantic with water gently burbling out of those tall standing stones, to cascade onto the gravel pool below.

What a difference this makes! I have to keep the window wide open, even if it's chilly out - the better to hear the falling water. I do have a nature sound simulator, but this is really a bit better, being real sound in the real world. It may not be an actual mountain stream, but I'm not complaining. And it's sunny out today. What more could I want as I sit by the window and work?

989 Elements ACTUAL Move In Date

It's a good thing I had an extra month paid for here at our Belle Arts studio. My husband and I would be out on the street if we'd believed for a second that that our 989 Elements May 6 move-in was a go.

That said, we finally have an actual, for real, move-in date - May 20th. This is fine for me, since the remainer of the month at our new place will be prorated; it's cheaper for us to move in later than sooner.

That still gives us 11 days left in the rest of May for a lazy move. We only need to transfer our possessions across the rather compact Bellevue downtown, from Belle Arts on 108th to 989 Elements on 112th. Easy. All part of the plan to decrease our overall "moving stress".

I'll start transferring things to my car immediately. A few things bought down, here and there, household items I won't miss for the two weeks while I wait. I've moved so many times recently - eight times in the last year and a half - that I've realized the value of not leaving packing until the last minute.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Bellevue and the Flowering Fall of Spring

It's the end of the first Fall in Bellevue. Did you know Spring has a Fall? It's the time when all the little trees drop their flowers, coating the street curbs with piles of soft pink petals. It's really quite lovely, and carries a tinge of sadness...we will have to wait until next year to watch these notes of pink breezing about.

The major compensation is the onset of better weather. It's still not reliably sunny, but the days are longer and mostly clearer. The air feels softer, lacking the bite we've become used to all winter long.

All the trees have fully entered Springtime, at least. There is no mistaking the light green tufts, thicker by the day. Annuals grow thickly in Downtown medians and planters, and the perennials are sending up preliminary shafts and buds.

Winter is over, Amen.

Related Blog: Bellevue and the Flowering Trees of Spring