Saturday, January 15, 2011

Just When You Think You've Seen It All

Ask any realtor, and they'll tell you how difficult our business is right now. Lately the time it takes to get a transaction to the closing table probably pays me less than I could have earned bagging groceries.

But it's what I do. I enjoy it, and it's never boring. I meet new people all the time and some are more interesting than others. We all talk about our "war stories." You'll hear a Realtor say, "That's another chapter for the book."

Last year I worked as a buyer's agent for Dave and Lisa, both in their 30's. Dave was sort of a rough-and-tumble kind of guy and Lisa, well, Lisa was interesting. Very pretty, usually blond, I'd guess she was a size 0 or maybe a size 2.

Despite being so tiny it was obvious she'd had some "enhancements." You just don't naturally get those things with such a tiny body. And because it was during the hottest part of the summer, she didn't always have many clothes on. She wasn't working at the time and over the course of time mentioned several places she had lived.

We looked at many, many houses over a couple months. At the end of our appointments we usually stood outside somewhere sweating in the heat talking about everything. They thought I was cool and we got along well. Dave and Lisa are big animal lovers, especially dogs. In addition to raising dogs, Lisa loves snakes. (I saw that shudder)

When she first mentioned her snake, I know she was watching for my reaction. She didn't get what she was expecting because I'm not afraid of snakes. Of all the reptiles people tend to keep as 'pets' I prefer snakes to iguanas, lizards, etc. So after that I heard lots of stories and saw pictures of Bee, their 3' ball python.

One day when they came to look at some houses with me, Lisa was an absolute wreck. Bee had gotten out of her cage and was lost. She eventually showed up a few days later when she crawled into Lisa's lap as she sat on the floor.

Another day Lisa came to look at a house carrying a little leather clutch. She also arrived that day with pink hair. Inside the purse was, you guessed it, Bee. It was surprising how small she was all curled up in there. While we were in the house, Lisa started to take Bee out to show me. I suggested she leave her there until we got outside. I could just envision the snake getting lost in that house.

Once in the yard she brought Bee out. I thought the other agent was going to have a heart attack. He raised his hands like he was being held up at gunpoint and stumbled backwards to the fence on the other side of the yard shouting "I don't like snakes!" It was funny at the time. The next day I got a text from the agent asking "is your client interested in the house or did she slither off to another one?"

Finally we found THE house for them, a very nice little cape in a real "Leave It To Beaver" neighborhood. I wonder if anyone had a pet snake in Mayfield. Wasn't that the name of Beaver's hometown?

Lisa brought Bee to my office to sign the sales agreements. Fortunately it was after business hours. The three of us sat there at the conference table with this snake slithering all over it. There was a pen holder in the center of the table that she kept going into. It was pretty interesting to watch her. It was only the second time I'd had a chance to handle a snake. I drew the line when she tried to go up my sleeve.

When I called to tell them when and where the closing was going to be, I told Lisa, "Don't bring Bee." She did bring a photo of Baby B, the newest member of the family, a Ball Python Morph. You can't make this stuff up.

The day that Lisa brought Bee to our appointment to see that house, as usual we stood on the sidewalk outside chatting while Lisa brought Bee out of her purse and wrapped her around her neck. So there I am, standing on a city sidewalk talking to a woman with pink hair and a snake wrapped around her.

Did I mention that Lisa told me she 'danced' for 15 years in LA and Vegas? Surprise, surprise. I had her pegged for a stripper the first time I met her. I guess snakes and dancing often go together. That's what Paul told me anyway. I'm not sure how he knows.

I haven't talked to Dave and Lisa since they closed on their house last fall. I need to give them a call and find how everyone is adjusting to the new place. Told you we have great stories. And, no, you can't make this stuff up.


Laoch of Chicago said...

I would charge a larger commission if the client wanted to include their snake in our meetings.

Anita said...

I love this story, and I'm not really afraid of pet snakes either. now one in my yard, I'm a bit more stand offish about.
Interesting the people you meet.

Debby@Just Breathe said...

I am not fond of snakes but I really enjoyed this story. I guess if I meet a nice one like Bee I feel better about them. Can't believe that see takes Bee out with her. I'll have to see if my husband knows anything about snakes and dancers :)

Pam said...

I am petrified of snakes and this would not work for me. I can not figure out why anyone would want a pet snake, let along carry it around with them. Very weird!

"Cottage By The Sea" said...

Alrighty then. You deserve all you made on that commission and more. I loved the story though, just glad I could read it from afar. You are a trouper.


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