Archive | Newton RSS feed for this section

Day or Night, I Love Walking This City

29 Aug

I have a confession to make.

Remember earlier this year when I said I was going to use part of my newfound free time to work out?

And remember how I was true to my word on that first day and went to the gym to use the equipment?

Well … I haven’t gone back to the gym since then. Not even once.

Oh well.

I’m sure you’re surprised to learn this.

But here’s the thing: Even though I haven’t been using the gym, I have been staying active. Continue reading

Wow. What an Improvement

31 Oct

Holy crap.

The new Star Market in Chestnut Hill (which opened yesterday) is awesome.

Finally, we have a supermarket worthy of the zip code — one that’s a huge improvement over the old one.

I went to check out this glorious place after work last night, after weeks of waiting for it to open (months, actually, considering how long the place was under construction).

Suffice it to say, the wait was worth it. Continue reading

It Was a Beautiful Day

25 Oct

People often ask me, “Martin, if you don’t like cold weather, why have you stayed in the Northeast your entire life?”

And invariably, my answer is, “Because of days like today.” Continue reading

I Wonder What’s in Store

8 Oct

People who know me know I get excited about the silliest or simplest of things.

Like the fact that when I went to get gas last night, the price was just $2.39 a gallon — six cents cheaper than the place I drive by on the way to work every day.

What can I say? I think it’s a good thing that it doesn’t take much to make me happy. Continue reading

Road Rage

27 Aug

How long does it take to repair a quarter-mile stretch of road? I’ve been asking that question a lot lately because more than five months after it began, construction work on the stretch of Commonwealth Ave. near Boston College continues, and it shows no real sign of nearing completion. For many months now, I’ve been complaining about the many potholes in the area, which still haven’t been filled in, and the disturbance that some of this construction work has created. I’m sure I’m not the only one in the area who’s growing frustrated by the pace of the work. After all, it started in the spring when things were slow, and now, just as the college students are coming back and the roads are getting more crowded, it’s still going. Hopefully it won’t be much longer till Comm Ave is a nice drive again, and I don’t have to deal with being rerouted or driving over potholes or rocks or around construction trucks anymore.

Rage Against the Machines

30 Jun

To the Town of Newton:

I realize there’s probably no good time to do construction work, but don’t you think 7:30 a.m. is a little too early to start using a buzzsaw and a crane and whatever else is being used right outside my window at this too-early-in-the-morning hour? There’s pavement being lifted, sidewalk being removed, holes being dug … and it’s making a hell of a lot of noise. And it’s not the first time something like this has happened. There’ve recently been a few days where I’ve woken up to the very loud whirring of the machines, and there was even a night not too long ago where it was going on past midnight. This work has been going on since March. When will it end???

When I moved to this condo, I realized I was moving near a college and a T stop and that it wouldn’t be sooooo quiet. But this is just ridiculous. I’d love it if you could be a little more considerate and respectful of the people who live right here where you’re doing this work and schedule it at less intrusive hours.

Thanks.

Sincerely,
Martin

Digging a Hole

31 Mar

I got home at 10:00 this evening to find a big hole outside my building and a lot of noise. Turns out someone scheduled work installing a new water main for tonight. I’m not sure when the work started, but when I asked the policewoman on duty what was going on, she said the next shift was about to arrive and they would be there till 2 a.m. At least I think that’s what she said. I could barely hear over the sound of the drilling and the sawing of pipe. I asked if the old water main had burst or something, and she said no. Then I asked what those of us who live in the building literally feet away were supposed to do, and she said it would be over soon. Yeah, at 2 in the morning.

This is ridiculous. It’s 11 p.m. now and while the drilling and sawing appear to have stopped, the whirring of the machinery and the generator is still so very loud. There’s a spotlight shining on the workers that is so bright that I don’t need to turn on the lights in my apartment to see where I’m walking. Who schedules work like this in a residential area to take place at night, and at such a late hour? It’s inconvenient, it’s noisy, it’s disruptive, it’s unnecessary. This could have and should have been scheduled for daytime hours. And given the timing and all, it would have been nice if we in the building had been given a heads up that it was going to be happening. Thank you, town of Newton (or whoever is responsible). This is B.S. I hope I’ll be able to sleep tonight. And I just hope this work doesn’t affect the water in the building overnight or in the morning.

(No, I didn’t take that photo, btw. But it should sorta give you an idea of what it looks like outside my window as I write this.)

Fill ‘Em Up

7 Jan

I suppose it’s a little premature to be posting this now, given that we’re in the middle of another storm and all and the plows are coming around again, but damn — when is someone going to do something about the potholes on Commonwealth Ave. around Boston College? No, not on the main road. The carriage lane from the bottom of the hill to around Mt. Alvernia Road is all broken up with craters that make driving on the street similar to what I’d expect it’s like to drive on the moon (forgetting the whole no-gravity thing, obviously). It’s a hazard to both drivers and pedestrians because I’m sure I’m not the only one who swerves to avoid getting a flat tire (and yes, I drive slowly). Maybe the Town of Newton could take care of this before some residents who are less passive aggressive start complaining? And of course, before it gets any worse. After all, it’d be nice if my ability to make change wasn’t just limited to Brookline.

It’s Mine! All Mine!

27 Mar

Funny thing about closings: They’re pretty anti-climactic.

The hard work and discussion and heavy lifting had all taken place earlier as the process moved along.

All that was left was for me to hand over some money and sign lots and lots of documents.

So, I sat there at the table on Thursday signing page after page, initialing here, giving my full name there.

Meanwhile, my broker and my lending agent just sat and watched.

The whole thing took about a half hour and was really no big deal. We laughed, we joked.

It was actually fun.

And then, without warning, my lawyer stopped passing documents my way and I actually had to ask him, “Is that it?”

And that was it.

Without fanfare or a marking of the significance, I became a homeowner.

Just like that.

Not that I expected trumpets or balloons or even confetti, but, you know, this is a pretty big deal and it pretty much just passed. Continue reading

Movin’ On Up

17 Mar

As a soon-to-be homeowner, I certainly have a different way of reading real estate news and articles pertaining to the best neighborhoods, etc. For example, in yesterday’s Boston Globe Magazine I saw that my new zip code — 02467 — was listed as the third-best ZIP code in Massachusetts (within I-495, that is) because of the jump in single-family home prices and the abundance of retail stores. For me, that’s a jump from seventh place, where my current ZIP code is listed. Now, of course, I can’t claim any real personal investment in 02446 because currently I only rent, but it’s nice to know my choice of a new home is a step up in the right direction.