You will recall from my last column that we had put Eddy the Realtor in a tricky position by telling him to approach the seller of the condo of our dreams with what he felt was a ridiculous offer: Less than half the asking price.
As for me, I was in a state of hives because my “written-in-stone” budget had doubled before my disbelieving eyes, and I was supposed to be ashamed about the bid? However I felt it was highway robbery.
It was by then our last day in Puerto Vallarta, but our plane did not leave till 4 p.m., so we explored the last (as far as I know) Woolworth’s store in existence. It is a wonderful spot with a sort of pop-up men’s and women’s department, where sales last a few days and then all the apparel seems to be replaced. It is eclectic and subdued at the same time. We loved it. It is the sort of place where the cure to cancer might be in a forgotten drawer at the back, by the washrooms.
During this adventure my phone rang. It was an excited Eddy the Realtor telling us that while the developer Sergio had “respectfully declined our offer,” he had wondered if we might want to raise it a bit. My wife Michelle started saying that we could not miss our chance at paradise because I would not raise our offer “by a few bucks.” I fought back by whining, “But my little love sponge, we had an agreed upon budget, yes?”
Eddy was still on the line shouting that we were close to closing the deal if we wanted to “if you have the guts.” I ask you, who could stand up against this two-pronged attack as my wife licked my ear, so I upped the price by a further $5,000. Our somewhat disappointed realtor said he would e-mail Sergio’s reply by the time we landed in Calgary. I swear he mumbled something about “cheap Canadians” before hanging up.
We were over the moon and felt that this was just a formality, a Mexican way of getting more money for the condo, and once this negotiation was done it would be ours. We strutted onto the plane telling our admiring fellow passengers that we had bought a beautiful place in PV and would be moving down in the very near future. We showed pictures of the view to gushing flight attendants and blushed sweetly at their oohing and aahing. I took several names of people who thought they might rent the place next February or March.
Life was good on that flight back to Canada. Our daughter Mary lives in Calgary and since WestJet does not fly direct to either Vancouver nor Victoria in June, we thought we would stay overnight at her condo, before travelling on to B.C. the next day.
Unbeknownst to me, my wife had texted Mary to say that we had bought the place in PV and she and her husband Adam were invited down for Christmas to celebrate in the sun. She told me this as we deplaned in Calgary and simply laughed the way she does when I became annoyed. “After all,” she pointed out, “you took names of those on the plane who wanted to rent the place.” I still thought she was wrong.
I fired up my Blackberry as we came down the stairs to the baggage carousel, hoping that Eddy had e-mailed us. He had. Oh oh! Sergio had taken a much larger offer from a buyer in the wings, “but thank you for your interest.”
I told Michelle, who then made me carry her bags as well as mine as we came through the exit to where our daughter awaited. “He blew it,” she said as she hugged Mary. I will always be grateful to Mary for saying, “Don’t worry, Daddy, you did your best, I am sure.” What a girl. But still I was very disappointed not to have made the deal, because in my mind, we already had the condo.
We had a somber time with Mary and Adam that night as everyone had been geared up to have Christmas in PV. However by the time we returned to our home in Victoria, Michelle and I had come to grips with the realization that we did not get our dream condo, but we would try again next year. After all, we had learned a great deal from our week in PV.
One morning two weeks later, an e-mail arrived from Eddy the Realtor. The subject line said “An opportunity.” When I opened it I started hyperventilating. The other offer had fallen through and Sergio would entertain our last offer if we were still serious.
My wife screamed, “Say yes!” And that day we agreed to buy our condo in the sun.
However if we had known what was about to befall us, I am not sure we would have had the strength to carry on. But what did we know, eh?
Next column; Hard feelings.
copyright Christopher Dalton 2014