In my previous blog about moving to America I told you about meeting Chuck, and how his creative ideas made it possible for us to buy a new home. He worked with a very smart gentleman called Joe and a mortgage company who realized that there was life outside the US. They checked our credit history back to England and found us to be creditworthy. Yes we qualified for a mortgage! Imagine that!!!
Kacey Fine Furniture would NOT let use have credit to buy furniture, Best Buy wouldn’t even let us have credit to buy a VCR, but we could buy a home.
We were extremely grateful to Chuck and Joe, without their help we probably wouldn’t be where we are today!
During the summer of 1995, we visited the construction site, that was to become our new home, every weekend and walked around it when everyone had left for the day. It was exciting, but also a little alarming. In England houses were build brick, by brick, and went up slowly. In the US, it looked like the houses were being built with match sticks and cardboard. They looked like a strong gust of wind would blow them down. The houses were built quickly and I saw concern on Lester’s face as he watched the process.
We didn’t see Chuck for about a month after we bought our house until one Saturday in late July, when we showed up early on a Saturday afternoon. Chuck was showing someone the lot next to our house. We waited until he was finished with his prospective home buyers, and then Lester went and talked to him. They walked around the matchbox house together, Chuck explaining how it was built and why it was built that way etc. and I think he eventually convinced Lester that the house was not going to fall down and would be there for a very long time.
Joanna and I were standing waiting for them in the scorching sun and were relieved when Chuck invited us back to the Sales Office for cold drink. We arrived ahead of Chuck, who had stopped on the way to talk to someone. Chuck liked to talk! We entered expecting to find the assistant who had been there when we first met Chuck, I just can’t remember her name, was it Gwen? She had been a very quiet person, the exact opposite of Chuck! Gwen was no longer there and we were greeted by a very friendly young lady with a big smile and a welcoming voice. I started telling her who we were but never finished my sentence.
“You must be the Thompson’s, I have been waiting to meet you. Chuck has told me all about you. She hugged Joanna and took her back into her office to find her candy and drinks, talking the whole time about how happy she was to finally meet us”
Chuck showed up about five minutes later, and he and Lester sat and talked in one office, while Patty, Joanna and I talked in the other. We must have been there for a couple of hours, and we had a lot of fun. Chuck invited us to a street party the following week, and said we would be playing ‘Stick Ball’. The party sounded good, but we had no idea what ‘Stick Ball’ was.
We were settling in and having fun, life was good!