I don’t know how often this happens to you, but after watching a few episodes of HGTV’s House Hunters International (the televised equivalent of crack cocaine for the home/decor set), specifically about a couple who moved from England to the countryside of France, I was spurred on to check what the housing prices are like abroad in the land of baguettes and frilly lingerie. In the process of researching properties in bed, some amusing noted traits about Emily and I arose.
Although Emily and I get along brilliantly in almost every category, besides our opinions about Mr. Darcy and death metal, we do diverge in regards to the scope and feasibility of how and what we dream about. Ever the pragmatic realist, Emily’s aspirations are firmly based in reality…arguably, frighteningly so.
Here’s an example of the “dream” property that elicited excitement from Emily while perusing real estate in France. This “drop off your used mattresses by the roadside” piece of land is unsurprisingly available for 220 euros, free discarded Fanta soda cans and piles of dirt to help hide bodies in to sweeten the deal. Another example was this “charming” fixer upper, a stone building that would likely give Mike Holmes an aneurysm. Yeah, you bet that price is negotiable…$18,242 for the privilege of living in a semi-neolithic interior is even daunting for this “love to fix shit up” gent. But at least the toilet is new.
I had to reason with Emily that owning either of these two glowing examples of French history would not bring us either joy or the opportunity to be on House Hunters International ourselves, unless HGTV decided to broadcast stories about real estate tragedies and the relationship disasters that followed.
On the flipside, my dreams tend to run willy-nilly into the realm of R. Kelly “I believe I can fly” territory. My middle name: Delusional. Ever the unrealistic dreamer, my eyes tend to roam right out of the zip code of reality, and quickly into the categorical listings of estates, castles, and manors. At the sight of the word, “chateux”, my eyes immediately widen in anticipated glee, salivary glands unleashing a torrent of architecturally induced drool. I will settle for summer estates and cottages if the location is prime, but the grand and amongst the clouds is where my dreams congregate for a dalliance. And on that note, I’ll reveal at one moment last night, upon opening a page with a castle surrounded by a star-shaped moat, I screamed out in a confident roar, “I WANNA HAVE SEX WITH THAT CASTLE!”. Ahem, I can be passionate, there’s no doubt.
We could both agree that we need to find a way to make enough money to come into acquisition of this property to preserve. You had us at the mention of “ruins”. But for now, we’ll settle for some decent croissants from our new favourite Francophile destination and hope we can move to another Silver Lake apartment with one additional bedroom overlooking the Reservoir, both more realistic than my wayward dreams outside the orbit of reality and less discomforting than Emily’s choices in property potential this side of the Manson family (a French Manson family, mind you).