I've never been very good at dealing with change, and it's never been more evident than in the last ten days. Thankfully my move to Tampa went as smoothly as possible, all the way down to the animals behaving themselves quite nicely during the nine hour drive south.
I arrived in Tampa on Tuesday, Sept. 30th to a mild tropical downpour. My husband helped me unload the critters and my studio equipment during breaks in the rain. He honestly couldn't believe how much stuff I was able to cram into my little Honda!
My first full day in our rent house was spent watching painters paint the outside of the house mint green. Not a color I would have chosen, but it's not my house. On day two we began searching for our new home.
We've been told again and again that now was the perfect time to buy a house in Florida because their housing market is so depressed, just imagine the deals! Well, we've learned first hand that while the houses might not be as expensive as they were two years ago, they aren't exactly 'cheap'. And finding a house that is in good condition and won't take six months to get into because it's a short sale is next to impossible! Inventory is incredibly low because in this economy, people don't want to put their homes on the market unless they have to. We did find a couple of great homes in New Tampa (East of Tampa) and put an offer on one yesterday. We are waiting to see what happens.
As for the rental, despite being small- it is kinda cute. I'm thankful to have had the opportunity to live in this area, because I really thought this was where we would want to live permanently. Sadly, that is no longer the case. As I've learned in the last week, airplanes arrive and depart Tampa International from the North and the South. Therefore, any homes built North or South of the airport experience near constant flight traffic. Not so good when you make your living as a voice actor! So, I voice for a bit...wait for a plane...voice for a bit...plane...etc. This is the reason we've decided our next house will either be East or West of Tampa!!
On my 4th day in Tampa, I began putting my studio together. It's amazing how boxes can really dampen the sound in a room! Since we had many, many packed boxes to store, I decided to use them to 'pad' the walls in the spare room. While it isn't very pretty, it is quite effective! I was also thankful for the many diagrams and pictures I had taken when tearing down my studio in NC. Several knobs and buttons had been shifted in the move, and it only took a few minutes to get everything back to normal. In fact, I had to do a few pick up lines on a project I had voiced in NC- and you could barely tell a difference! I don't always come up with great ideas- so that one will most certainly be added to my list of good ones!
We haven't had much time yet to really explore Tampa, or Florida for that matter, so I'm very excited about a little trip I am taking tomorrow! Randy Thomas is having a book signing tomorrow in Ft Meyers for her new book "Voice For Hire". My good friend Caryn Clark offered to have me stay at her house if I decided to drive down, and I figured this would be a great opportunity for me to take a break from the boxes! Caryn was even kind enough to offer her studio so I could record a podcast I need to finish this weekend. I love that girl!
As I alluded to in the beginning of this blog- it hasn't been an easy week. I've discovered that I'm more of a cry baby than I ever knew I was (yes, I've cried every day since I arrived). I didn't know how attached I was to Charlotte, NC until I wasn't living there anymore. I've also learned I'm absolutely terrified of alligators, and lizards kinda creep me out too. However, there is nothing more beautiful than a Florida sky, and the folks down here are some of the nicest around. Plus- it's very funny to be driving around and see a peacock just walking down the street!
While I still have a few months before I'll be able to fully settle in (and finally figure out which box contains our drinking glasses!) I am glad we made the move to Tampa. Now I just have to convince my cat that the birds down here can eat him, not the other way around!