And in continuing to contemplate my next move, I must now do so in an even more literal sense. That’s because it’s coming time for me to decide whether to remain in this here apartment.
It’s hard to believe that I’ve been here since January 25 already, just over nine months! For some reason, both Carrboro’s Estes Park Apartments, my previous residence, and Durham’s Duke Manor, where I stay now, require that one submit a notice of departure two months before the lease is up. I’m not sure what would happen if I don’t submit this and attempt to move anyway, but I probably shouldn’t find out.
So this means that right before Thanksgiving, I need to determine if I wish to remain here, and in all likelyhood with my current employer, for another year. I know that the latter will probably happen anyway, as it’s just taking a bit of time to really firm up my next path.
Someone has suggested that I look into working in a library. That could certainly be an interesting concept, but I’d like to speak with other blind people who have done so, if in fact there have been others in a library setting.
But I digress. I think the first thing to do in thinking about whether and where to relocate is to lay out the pros and cons of where I am at present. On balance, I guess this area isn’t too entirely bad.
- Very affordable: Rent only $475 per month, highest electric bill was $102 and that’s only happened once.
- Strong sense of community: I’ve often waxed on about my great neighbors, and especially the older woman who took me to the store and paid for many of my groceries that first week I was here with practically nothing. She’d do that for anyone, trust me. I’ve seen her do it.
- An easily accessible bus stop to Chapel Hill: this could matter in the event that I begin doing something at UNC again. Of course I still half live in that area anyway, going there almost every other day after work and on weekends. Will probably do so less as it cools, but we’ll see.
- A gas station/convenience store within walking distance: anyone who knows me knows I gotta have my pringles, brownies, snickers, and anything in that vain. All of the cashiers already know me so well that they often come running out of the door as I approach.
All good things, and many of them pretty surprising. This mostly because I moved into this place without having previously visited the place, something I said I’d never do again after my dicy experience moving into a complex way off of the bus line and full of half-crazed, tear the place down college students near UNC Charlotte. But because I was out in the coutry, I hadn’t had much choice.
- Few if any sidewalks: and this is a big one! One that, had I reconoitered the place I may well have chosen not to move in. Little snippets of walk exist, meaning I must either hop into the grass or do a semidangerous tightrope in the shoulder while cars whiz by, oblivious to speed limit and speed bumps. I avoid grass, because while I like dogs, I’m not so fond of what they leave there and don’t wish to drag it into my apartment on my shoes.
- A less accessible bus stop going in the other direction, toward Durham Station: this is because it requires one to cross a rather expansive thoroughfare that can be busy during peak traffic hours. Fortunately, it tends to be very lightly traveled at 5:20 in the morning when I use it, though.
- A somewhat difficult to locate leasing office: well it’s basically a straightaway during which I can follow the curb. There are a couple of complex spots though where I must jump from one curb to another, and if I don’t hit it just right I’ll end up sailing down the wrong street. The iPhone and Ariadne GPS have helped re-orient me in that event.
- A block of hard to reach restaurants: well I’ve walked up there with a sighted person, but she said that area is kind of built more for vehicular than pedestrian access. It’s too bad too, as they have a nice outdoor patio with tables that is wonderful during warm weather. But I wouldn’t feel comfortable crossing those parking lots with a busy street roaring just to my left.
So I suppose that by looking at my Cons list, I should be able to get a sense of what I’d like to be different or present in another complex. I could deal with a slight rent increase, though I’d probably not go up to like $850 per month. I don’t want to be struggling to get by, wondering how I’ll avoid late fees and feed myself. I’ve been there before.
I’d really like to find a place with more sidewalks, on the bus line of course, and hopefully within walking distance of stores and restaurants. I’ve been told by a couple of people that there are such places that’d charge about the same as I’m paying now. Would you happen to know about them, and if so could you pass that information over here? Thanks for any assistance.