Wednesday, June 30, 2010

painting party

I think last week was one of our worst. We decided to paint the outside of our house thinking that that would be the ticket to selling it. Hell, we had already fixed everything that needed fixing, finished the cosmetic improvements that we could afford; with the exception of course for a kitchen remodel as we had spent that budget on last year's french sojourn that got us into all of this trouble in the first place. But, our place looks pretty good. We have an incredible view, the rooms are all freshly painted and we keep the house as close to immaculate as you can and unfortunately, devoid of many of our personal things. Anyway, so Hank finally convinces me that he can crank out this painting job by himself in a weeks time. We call my brother, John to see if he can help and off we go to Home Depot. We have a vague idea of what we want - Hank wants off-white or beige; I want deep, rich browns or greens to blend into our Topanga fauna. Guess who wins? We settle on "Mississippi Mud" which was kind of a brown-muddy-green color which looked fantastic on the color swatch. Since we needed to get this finished before this Sunday's open house, we forego the usually sampling and order a 5-gallon container and painting supplies. The following day, Hank starts painting the side of the garage and we were so happy with our choice, just oohing and awwing away. We like it so much, he continues on and finishes painting our garage door which is on the front of the house. We go to sleep content with the certainty that we have made an excellent choice and this will surely improve our curb appeal. Then we woke up and and the sun was shinning on our beautiful new paint. Only it was no longer so beautiful. It was the color of diarrhea and I was just sick. Hank, on the other hand, thought it was okay and wanted to continue on with the rest of the house. "Oh, no honey," I say. "we're having a hard enough time attracting people to our house."

Just to be sure I do not intentionally increase the tension in our household without good reason, later that morning I asked two friends to come over to see the damage, hoping that they will tell me that I am crazy and that the color is perfect. Unfortunately, neither Fariba or Paulette can and so I spent most of the day arguing with Hank over what to do. We are both so stressed and tired and at our wits end. I, of course can only imagine our complete spiral into financial ruin due to our house not selling and owing lots on a home equity line and now, a brand new french mortgage. Hank just wants to fix the problem so I can stop worrying so much and now the painting idea has not worked the way he had hoped (the quality was superb even if the color was awful though).

In the meantime, our dear friend Fariba suggests that maybe we should get another agent to list our house so it can appear like a new listing as it has now been on the market over 4 months. I ask her if that is what she wants to do; if it is just too depressing or too much work. "No, not at all, my dear," she says. "I only want your house to sell so you can go to France on schedule." So, she would give up her eventual guaranteed commission after all of her hard work just so we could pursue our dream on time. What a wonderful friend and that is why we said no; we will not list with another agent. Then later that same weekend, she even out does this selfless gesture by offering up her husband Dale and daughter, Sanam, to join us on Saturday morning for a "painting party" and we spend the afternoon together getting rid of the nasty color with our original house color and we are back to square one.