About a year ago, while we were in escrow to buy a home, I was spending a lot of time absorbing any decorating inspiration I could get my hands on. I had checked out a Rachel Ashwell Shabby Chic book, and in the book she shared how she had sought out and successfully purchased a home that wasn’t even for sale in Malibu. I’m talking about her Casa Sugar, worth $4.4 million.
Then I heard another story of my friend’s brother, who was building a home on the cliff overlooking the water in Santa Barbara and some stranger drove up and said, “My client wants to buy your home,” and the owner said it’s not for sale, and the stranger said, “You don’t understand. Oprah Winfrey will pay whatever you want for this home.”
Thus sold the home.
About a year ago, I fell in love with a home I drove by. It was Spanish-style, with a beautiful courtyard, and I immediately envisioned my kids growing up there. Unfortunately it was not for sale, and I’ll remind you that at the time we were in escrow with another home, and my husband thought this was proof that I was completely insane. But I could not stop thinking about this other home, and my perseverance kicked in. I did some detective work and found the name of the person who lived there. I googled his name, and found his website, and looked for contact info, but not before I was temporarily distracted by his professional videos about his subconscious healing and hypnosis services. (There’s a market for hypno-healing?!?)
Under the influence of the legends of millionaire homebuyers mentioned above, I emailed the guy living in the home I coveted, asking if he wanted to sell the home, and spent the next 8 hours tossing and turning, lovestruck by this home.
The next morning we went to the local coffee shop and while I was trying to convince my husband that this not-for-sale home was the home for us, who should walk in but the hypno-healing spiritualist himself! Feeling like I knew the guy already after watching his videos (perhaps a few too many), I exclaimed, “Joseph? Is that you?”
I probably came across something like Stuart from SNL’s the Californians wherein he exclaims, “Whuuturyuuduhinghere?”
I thought it was fate. My husband thought it was an unfortunate coincidence. And Joseph probably thought it was stalking. And when Joseph told me it was not for sale, I didn’t have the endless supply of cash to convince him otherwise. My naive hope for that home fell from the sky like a dead duck. I had forgotten to take into account the significant difference between me and those incomparables I was influenced by. Oprah, it turns out, is in a different league.
So I didn’t get the home and I might have lost some points from the “I’m stable” category. I do still go by the home hoping to find a for sale sign. Money draws the fine line between eccentricity and insanity.