After three days of Oki-style house hunting, we had narrowed our options to two places. One was a house on the far north corner of the Sunabe Seawall, the other was on the far south corner. And when I say “on the seawall” I mean it. Both were across the street from the water facing the seawall. (If that doesn’t get me out and running- Nothing will.)
House number one was a true stand alone house:
Next door is a cute little coffee shop- and that’s where the seawall ends on the North side. This place was everything that people had told us we could not find. A house, with a yard, and a view. We loved it. There was a balcony off of our bedroom and five huge windows. We’d be able to see the waves from our bed and go to sleep listening to them every night (that we kept the windows open). Because it is on a small one way street at the very north corner, there wasn’t much traffic either.
Here’s the rub, though. It was a three bedroom house, with one bath. And the bath… was downstairs. Call me high maintenance (Dane did), but I couldn’t imagine having to go downstairs in the middle of every night! The only other downside was that the kitchen was already equipped with a Japanese oven and stove-top. I mentioned this in a previous post, and I wish I had a picture to share with you, but imagine a three burner stove top, with a small drawer under it. Smaller than your silverware drawer… think the drawer that you use for pot holders. That “drawer” is the oven. You can make toast. But that is the extent of the “baking” that I would have been comfortable with. I love to bake. I have been planning on starting a little cake decorating business on the side while I’m here. This oven was going to be difficult. However, that being said, we’ve all heard that the first rule of real estate is location, so we were prepared to make this work. We looked into large toaster ovens, I told myself I could stop drinking water at night. We were ready to move on it. Until I saw the second house.
This one is more of a “flat” style. There are three units in the building and each has its own floor. I really liked the layout: It has a huge guest bathroom, a good sized kitchen, a private balcony off the master and a large balcony off the living area and one of the guest bedrooms. It’s a full 3 br, 2 ba, so we wouldn’t have to share one bathroom with guests (when you all start coming to visit!) The layout was great, but again we were trying to focus mostly on location. And that’s what made this place different than the first 15 houses we had viewed. It was also directly on the seawall. Although the view is not as uninterrupted (there are trees that have been planted between us and the seawall to give us more privacy) you can still see the water between the trees, hear the waves, and walk across the street to get to the seawall. I voted for this one, which we called “the flat.” Dane voted for “the house.”
The “House” Interior
The “Flat” Interior
You can probably tell from the way I have written each of these captions which one we chose. The tricky part was that we both loved both places, but since we didn’t think there was any chance the Air Force was going to let us keep both of them, we had to make a decision. We went back and forth 4 or 5 times over dinner before we decided to go check out the seawall and the “neighborhoods” by night, and let that make the decision for us.
The south end of the seawall opens out on the harbor that American Village sits on and the lights are out of this world. We also discovered that the “flat” was less than a block away from several great restaurants that we hadn’t noticed earlier that day. The “house” is next to a coffee shop, that we will definitely still be frequenting (have I mentioned that these houses are less than 2 miles away from one another) but the scene on the south end was infinitely more appealing to us… Not to mention it also meant the second bathroom and better kitchen.
And so, after three days of house hunting, we did some house finding and decided on this gorgeous little flat. Move-in is this weekend, and while we still don’t have our furniture, we can’t wait to finally have a place to call home.