Today we checked out a stunning Arts and Crafts–style house in Dorchester. How could we resist?
It's a lovely house, with high-ceilinged, quirky rooms and lots of space for books. The kitchen and bath are very old and need replacing, which I like. There are many fireplaces, and a huge copper beech on the front lawn. But there's no "village" nearby. Everyone drives to get practically anything: a loaf of good bread, a bag of groceries, a library book, a gym workout. I'm willing to walk a few miles a day but I don't drive, and I won't want to bike in hot, cold, or wet weather. And I don't really want to go miles just for an Iggy's loaf... I've been spoiled by living in a neighborhood that's a "Walker's Paradise" according to Walkscore.com.
So, we're reluctantly passing over the vast, affordable Victorians of the Ashmont neighborhood of Dorchester. But the quiet, privacy, and spaciousness of a house is SO appealing to us these days. Call us crazy, but tomorrow we have a date with a broker in Quincy. This house is probably even more remote from a decent loaf of bread or a Trader Joe's, but it still deserves serious consideration:
A house this amazing might turn me into a happy recluse. I could have everything delivered. I'd spend my days admiring the woodwork, playing the grand piano I'd finally have room for, and hanging out with about 20 cats. Possum and I could turn it into a cat B&B or rest home, or we could foster kittens. It's huge.
Closer to home, I am currently very taken by the, uh, shabby chic qualities of a little Victorian French mansard in Jamaica Plain, photos below. I get excited about almost any bathroom that doesn't have a Home Depot vanity, a vessel sink, or a jacuzzi tub. I am equally turned off by open kitchens with Ikea cabinets, stainless appliances, islands with bar stools, and granite the color of bad meat. Why, why are 9 out of 10 kitchens redone that way? I'd much rather face this:
If a stylist brought in a few Victorian sofas and beds, some rickety wooden furniture, and couple of bad oil paintings to lean against the walls, these spaces would be perfect for an Anthropologie catalog shoot.
Oh, heck! I forgot all about Anthropologie! Is there an Anthropologie anywhere near Quincy? ... No? In that case, I don't see how we can live there. Guess we'll have to take this wreck in JP. Sorry, Possum.