Tuesday, July 15, 2008

It's Sinking In...

...that I'm finally leaving this s#!thole. Okay, that's not fair: Many people consider SoCal, especially coastal SoCal, to be paradise. And by god, who am I to say they are not wrong? For them, it's a wonderful place. I reckon that by moving out, I'm making room for those that appreciate it. The folks buying our house are from Alameda, CA. They moved here because he was transferred here. I've only seen them twice, in that awkward space of being home sellers/home buyers, so I can't say whether they are going to be happy here. This is your basic breeder family with two kids, and the wife is mainly concerned with noise and construction (the high school between the house and ocean is getting a long-needed renovation), while he is mainly concerned with the view. Yes, you can see the ocean, one mile away, if you look in the right direction off the upper deck and if the weather co-operates (today it's not co-operating, presenting one of those completely white skies which are common along the coast). But folk from more northerly places, or places which are not on the bottom of the atmosphere, don't know how thick the air is here, how muggy it can get, how the vaunted climate, in its thick tedium, offers so little in beauty.

But thick air is not generally a problem at 4,000 ft., something that gives me hope that Bend's high-elevation blue skies, puffy cumulonimbus, and arid climate can offer what coastal SoCal can't provide: change and beauty.

I just got off the phone with JM, the handyman that will be doing the work on our house to convert three small rooms into one large 11 ft x 30 ft room for my shop + adding an exterior door. The price shocked me: it was much lower than I expected. Of course I still have to arrange for a concrete walkway/ramp to the new exterior door on the lower level for deliveries, and have to see about having a 12 x 15 shed built outside that door for storage so we can a.) shuttle my 20 year-old son down into the room which I'll temporarily be using for storage, which will then b.) free up a room which Mrs Elliott will then gratefully convert into a guest bedroom for the grandchildren. The one thing depends on another, it's rather like those puzzles where one slides tiles with letters on them about. I forget what those are called. . . .

Update 1.: By paying a mere $5, the Oregon Secretary of State kindly faxed the Articles of Organization to my banker in Bend, Liberty Bank (LB) on Century. So she's ready for me to open my business bank account. HOWEVER, LB does not have a SWIFT/BIC number, which is needed for overseas customers who wish to wire money to me. Instead, they use an intermediary bank, which is kind of mickey-mouse. Intermediaries are confusing to folk initiating wires, and they scrape off a few bucks from the money intended for me. I've asked LB to absorb the cost. I'll see how they respond.

Update 2. Frankly, compared with here, doing business in Bend is a pleasure. The Deschutes county tax assessor's office picked up the phone first thing on a Monday morning (I had a question about the Property Tax filing requirements for businesses -- we don't have such a thing here in California-- instead, we pay $800 per annum for the pleasure of doing business in Calif., as opposed to the $50 annual fee one pays in Oregon for the same privilege); and the nice lady at the Allstate office in Bend was helpful and friendly when I called her to ask about a detail on our new home owner's insurance policy.

Adding to the pleasure of doing business in Bend, I placed an ad on Craigslist-Bend to find someone to do a little yardwork around the house, and found a qualified guy right away at a fair price. And an ad in the Bulletin to find someone to build USPM-15 approved crates has brought in a few, though not necessarily qualified, responses.

Yeah, I think that Bend is gonna work out all right from a "doing business" perspective. That's what is sinking in -- that (in the words of Fredrick Frankenstein) "IT COULD WORK!"

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