Thursday, September 07, 2006

our new house

well i know its been a while, but i have great excuses - really!
we are in our new house, and our ship literally comes in today, so we should have our things shortly. man, moving is expensive! but we settle ourselves by saying at least we won't have to do this again for a while. my mom came for 10 days afer we arrived and helped us get set up, and jim came for a short visit during her stay to see lucas.. i heard that after they got back home, my mom went and looked at all the lucaspix again and this time, they really 'came alive' -that his smiles and expressions were more real, and she and jim have adopted some lu-vocabulary into their daily lives, namely "bye bye" (with the special wave included, i am sure its just darling).

boston is such a welcoming city. we feel right at home here already, and we havent even reallly started digging in to our surroundings yet. first of all, speaking the language has been a tremendous benefit.. but it seems to go beyond that, although i am not sure i could put it into exact terms for you.. you know what i mean? i can tell you though that the arts and music scenes are vibrant here, the parks are AMAZING, the sense of history tangible, the sidewalks are wide and smooth, and cars actually stop for pedestrians... even if you look like you MIGHT be thinkin about crossin the street, traffic on both sides glide to a stop and drivers start motioning for you to go ahead, please. lots of people ride their bikes, and there are ample bike lanes too.

we live just over 1 mile from harvard, so philippes commute is a dream, and he rides his bike to work every day (only 10 minutes ride), but also has the option to take the direct bus (15 min) or walk (30 min).. there are a ton of parks and shops very near the house, and the subway is a 15 minute walk away. lucas has a baby seat on the back of ph's bike and a swanky purple helmet that he is certain is actually a "ball!!"

and we did pretty good for housing too.. it's a 2-bedroom + study, 1-1/2 bath... on 2 floors and has an unfinished basement (has laundry conx, but no WD yet) ...and we only have 1 shared wall with the neighbors (a family with 3 teenage kids). the view out of the front of our house is the back of a building (commercial on the first floor, residential above), but the back of our house has a view on the park. and although the bathroom leaves a bit to be desired (it's under the eaves upstairs - so you have to watch your head in there) we got a great price on rent for the area. ooh honey, boston is expensive!

as much as i was looking forward to grocery shoping in the US, my feelings have been mixed. i notice here that there is a huge predisposition towards prepared/packaged foods... and while it is convenient once in a while... it just cannot be healthy! some of the prepackaged recipes would be so easy to make with fresh ingredients, but the packed foods are at such a competitive price it makes the decision for typically rushed americans to choose the preservatives and other mystery ingredients over their invaluable 10 extra minutes it would take to prepare it with real ingredients. on the other side of the same coin - the selection here is mind-boggling.

oh, how i have missed understanding the random and often funny things people say to one another in passing. this week i was stopped on the sidewalk while returning from the grocery with this question: "excuse me, is there actually any butter in peanut butter?" hahaha.. i was happy to have known the answer cuz it made me feel smart, and even happier that this is young man was even curious about such matters.. but at the bottom of it was the grin i had on my face for the rest of the day because it was such a funny question to be asked randomly on the street.. if people were asking me these types of questions in greece, i would have been oblivious to it.

lucas can now go up the stairs and down a small slide ALL BY HIMSELF now... and i just started feeling the new baby kicking this week. i met a very nice greek (cypriot) woman in the park! haha.. she has an 18 month old baby, and a french boyfriend. so we exchanged numbers and said we'd try to meet up again.. what irony.