Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Final Run-in with a Whack-a-do

part two of the story:

About eight months after we moved in, I found myself back in DC having my second brain surgery (nine years after the first - also discovering I had VHL, a chronic disease that would require kidney surgery that year, once I recovered from the brain surgery). It was a rough surgery and I needed to stay up there to go into PT and OT to relearn how to walk and write. They figured we'd be away from AR about 4 weeks, maybe five.

The end of the first week Ms Thing the landlord called my room. I was not expecting to hear from her, and I was definitely unprepared to hear the real reason she called.
"Hey. Sorry to hear about your operation. I wanted you to know, I sold the house."
me, slightly panicked: "You what?! The house you said we could live in for four years?"
Cuckoo-batshit-crazee: "Yeah, well, I changed my mind. But don't worry: you have 6 to 8 weeks."
me: "Well, gee, that's just great, since I'm in the hospital up here for two weeks and then in rehab two weeks after that -- leaving about two weeks or maybe if we're lucky, four, to find a house and move when we get home, in addition to continuing my therapy so I CAN WALK AND WRITE and go back to work. Thanks soooo much -- you're a real gem, and your timing is incredible." CLICK

When we got back to AR, we drew a circle around my work place and decided we wouldn't look at anything outside the circumference. Not buying a house wasn't an option. I never again wanted to be at the mercy of a landlord. We saw a lot of dismal prospects. We wanted to live close enough to commute to town and my work within 30 minutes, and ideally, have room for Excy's studio, and land for future horses.

We were down to the last two weeks when we were aimlessly driving the backroads yet again, when I spied a 'for-sale-by-owner' sign in front of a ranch house. "Pull in, pull in!" I shouted. The house and yard were a real mess, but I saw the possibilities right away. It was a decent house (good bones), had 7 acres, and a detached shed Excy could use for a studio, now being used as the owner's carpentry studio (he built lawn swings).

It was one of the quickest sales in history -- amazing when I think about it. They promised they could move out and we could move in even when the final papers were still being filed. We had all of a week to pack, move, clean the rental and clean the new house and pull up the disgusting wall-to-wall carpet and paint everything. Luckily (!), I was still out on medical leave from work. Excy also had to patch nail holes and repaint walls in the rental. I cleaned the rental and scrubbed the bathrooms as well as I could, but the water stains were permanent. But we left that place spotless -- which it hadn't been when we moved in. Then we worked like dogs on the new house. Thank the goddess for friends and family, who were enlisted to help. Because this place was horrid. It was like instead of cleaning a plate, they'd toss it into the yard. One bathtub took all afternoon to clean and the pumice stone my friend started with looked like a pebble when she was through. (And I swear to you, I like things clean, but I am not a neat-freak by any means).

So when Ms Cuckoo called and proceeded to berate us on how "filthy" she had heard from the new owner (her friend and former hairdresser) we had left her house, I lost my mind. Anyone who knows me well knows I seldom go ape-shit. I avoid confrontation. I swallow disappointment. I turn the other cheek. And when you finally punch that last nerve, you better hope you have a plane ticket out of the country, because I will make you regret you ever heard my name. Back away slowly because there will be a smack down and you will not be the one left standing.

After vomiting all over her punk ass on the phone, I proceeded to follow this up with a two-page, single-spaced letter. Then I made sure everyone at Winrock (her former work place) heard the whole story. And then I found the hair stylist and told him how great I thought he was, and how I'd definitely recommend his services to everyone.* Finally I made sure his only neighbors (who adored us, and are friends to this day) knew how Mr Wonderful treated us via Ms Cuckoo.

Never heard from her again. At least she was smart enough to do that much.

Months later, a mutual friend ventured that Ms Cuckoo was "really a good person."

I gave her a long look. Silence. "Are you friggen' kidding me?! You saw what we went through..." I made her promise not to say the name again.


* I told you I can summon my mean-streak...

24 comments:

Margaret (Peggy or Peg too) said...

And here I thought I was the only one living amongst wack-a-do's!

Glad it all worked out for you both!!

Desk said...

Great!

Aleta said...

Oh my gosh, that is just horrible about the landlord doing that to you. What horrible, horrible timing. You sure do have a lot of strength of character to go through so much and come through this. I admire you!

Ms. A said...

Bless you!

I can only tell you from my perspective, which is that of a reluctant landlord, that gets taken at every turn by deadbeats. Then it takes an act of God and the court to get them out. (and I won't go into property damage) Your landlord was lucky you didn't trash the place and walk away, considering you had a valid reason to be irate... and at least you didn't do damage to her, physically.

Stickhorsecowgirls said...

Hard to believe some people! That landlady was more than looney tunes--just not a nice person!

injaynesworld said...

What a nightmare. But at least you found your dream property and nobody can screw with you any more.

Retired English Teacher said...

Your recounting of the story was very funny. It did make for a good story. I have a few of those types of landladies myself when I was a single mom.

Things worked out for you, as well they should have. I'm surprised she was ever nice to her hairdresser. You'd think he would have been scared to rent from her.

Sweet Tea said...

I hardly know what to say about all that except that it was certainly a "raw deal" and it could not have happened at a worse time. Goodness knows you have been through a lot. I'd say you're one strong woman!

Traci said...

I don't think that's a mean streak, I think that's protecting yourself. I don't believe in always turning the other cheek. This story hits home. My sister is such an awesome person, she is strong but rarely makes a fuss, even when she's mis-treated. But this week she was treated like shit after she worked for my aunt for free, while my aunt was in the Bahamas. The whole story is infuriating. I did everything I could to encourage my sister not to let my aunt get away with it and after reading your story I know sometimes that's the right thing to do. People should not be allowed to treat others bad just because they are ignorant. That's no excuse. And people who don't see that need examining.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Moral of the story -- don't fuck with you! Glad there was a happy ending. And thanks for popping by my blog today.

Felisol said...

These last two posts were harsh reading with a happy ending.
I am a sucker for happy endings.
It was and is inhuman that you should have to go through this much after your surgery, but had not this Cruella de Ville acted as she did, you might still be living in that rented home and not have had strength to go through with your original wonderful plans.
The horrifying witch proved to be a blessing in disguise.

Someone, our God, is watching over you, also to tell this story and thus spread hope and courage to less "fortunate".

I believe in counter attacks; never letting the evil conquer.
How you in your condition managed all this is an enigma.
Then again, someone said, "Be a realist, count on wonders."
Wishing you all well from Norway.

Belle said...

It is hard to believe how awful people can be. I'm glad it all worked out, but what a nightmare!

Mama Spaghetti said...

That woman sounds like a real piece of work!

I totally understand what you mean about being subject to a landlord, though. I had one once that sent me a bill for cleaning after I moved out (having thoroughly scrubbed the place). The bill was written to himself from himself to the tune of several hundred dollars. Really? It's crazy what some people think they can get away with.

Roan said...

Nice landlord! Good for you!

Melodie said...

That is terrible! I am so glad you prevailed over Mrs.Cuckoo !

maddyrose said...

Terrible, wretched, loathsome woman!! I'm glad you made your stand and let everyone know what a whack job she is. Good for you!

"Alone again.... naturally!" said...

I am glad your living situation turned out for the best...sometimes I guess there are reasons these types of people are thrown into our path, whether we think so at the time or not (usually not!). You have that wonderful home of yours despite that person. Hope your day is going well.

ReformingGeek said...

Yeah, you can only take so much. What a BEE-OTCH!

GOOD FOR YOU for unloading. You needed it.

Lois said...

Total synchronicity how you found your home! So you install a claw footed tub where ever you move? I'll have to share that with husband, who is at the mercy of my claw footed obsession...

e said...

Good for you for giving Ms. Crazy and her hairdresser a piece of your mind!

Lois said...

You must think I'm some creeper, but I've had the most incredible time reading your blog these past 2 days. You tell your life with grace and humour.

Ashling said...

Thank goodness you've finally gotten clear of such a mess. Wishing you smooth sailing from here on!

Peruby said...

Oh you poor thing! I cannot imagine having to move and clean two places after recovering from surgery. And then to have that nut job to contend with. Talk about testing your limits. It amazes me that some people have lived this long without some irate victim taking them out.

Do you have any pics of your home before and after you moved in?

animal lover, quilt lover said...

Hello new friend. Thanks for your visit to my blog..
Yes on Monday I will have a foster dog here with me!!!It is all so exciting. I lost Bambi to the bridge June the 3th from congestive heart failure!! I miss her so much. I really didn't want to get another dog this soon but I was talking to a girl who said they really needed more foster care people and I heard myself say I would foster a dog. So here I go!!! I will be blogging about it and have pics of her by Tuesday or Wednesday. I hope you come back to visit then.
xx, Fern