Rent Free!

I love old houses.  Historic homes where you can walk in and feel the vibrations of people’s pasts.  Homes where ghosts dwell beside the echoes of arguments and love and laughter.  There are scars in the hardwood floors and patches over holes in the walls.  The plumbing is quirky and lights are in weird places because electricity wasn’t added until the mid 1900s.

I grew up in an old farmhouse, and my grandparents had one too.  In the house where I grew up, there were doorways everywhere, not like the open floor plans of modern homes.  I guess closing off doors allowed to keep rooms warmer in the frosty Pennsylvania winters.  In most rooms, there was only a single light bulb that was later updated to a ceiling fan.  The light switches were push button, not flip switch, and not every room had electric outlets.

It was a great place to grow up.  I didn’t realize how great until I moved out into a new home.  My house now is modern, and any of the dents and dings came from me or my family (including the furbabies).  I miss the history of the home I grew up in.  I miss the quirkiness.  Every modern home is pretty much the same, with no secrets to discover.

There’s a program on the East Coast, allowing people to live in historic homes rent-free.  What’s the catch?  Many of them need extensive work, so you either need deep pockets or substantial knowledge of home renovation.  I think it sounds like a great deal, and it makes me a little homesick.  Arizona doesn’t have any really historic homes like that.  People didn’t really start moving here in any number until air conditioning became pretty common.

When I moved out here, my life was pretty chaotic, so the sameness and uniformity of the homes and businesses out here felt soothing.  Now that my life is calmer, I crave the differences from back East.  I actually take pictures of houses when I visit!

It’s like they say… the grass is always greener on the other side.  I love living in Arizona.  I just wish I could visit back home more often.


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