A New Lease on Life

My Holly Golightly - she's a Coton de Tulear
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Although we had just listed our house on the market last week, it sold in six days.  And for $51,000 more than the list price!

The closing date is April 14th, and I had not found a place to live for Holly and me.

I will be renting a place to live – for the first time in nearly 50 years!

And this is the only home that Holly has ever known.

My Holly Golightly - a Coton de Tulear

Holly Golightly from Breakfast at Tiffany's

She'll be 14years old in November 2021

Love me, and I'll love you more

Hugging her daddy

On her favorite place to sleep - in bed with me

During my cancer treatments...

Holly knew her daddy was sick...

She hugged my cancer boo-boo's

Ten months after my cancer treatments (June 2010)

After surgery (August 2019)

Somebody needs a grooming!

What do you mean haircut?

After the grooming

She was the runt of the litter, but so was I.

But I will not be purchasing a home – I will be renting instead.

Sure, I can own a condo and not have to pay monthly payments – but then all of my money will be in the house.  So, I want to travel and see the world rather than be ‘house poor.’

However, I didn’t know how to go about looking for a place to rent.

I know that there are agencies representing landlords and tenants, but I prefer to research on my own.

Years ago, I got my first acting gig by checking Craigslist – so maybe, I’ll look there for places to rent.

I had thought about moving to the Maritimes or Ontario, but it would be too difficult a move for Holly.  She hates being in the car – much less spending hours on an airplane!

There are many beautiful places to live in the world, but my heart has been in British Columbia ever since I first lived here in 1974.

I knew exactly where I wanted to live, and regular readers of my journal will already know the answer:  White Rock!

Craigslist is the best place to search for anything.  You can enter all of the search criteria and then view the results.  The majority of listings feature photos and lots of descriptions.

But I also noticed one listing without pictures, and the description of a ground floor, ‘garden suite’ – was exactly what I wanted!

It was in a newer house, and everything in the home was brand new.  And it is about a block from the beach!

So, I wrote a reply to the listing, and several emails later, I was invited to view the place on Saturday.

Anita, the homeowner, had given me the address – so at least, I could do a ‘drive-by’ the home.  It was on a street I’ve walked by hundreds of times!

For the past week, whenever I was in White Rock to meet with Norm or go for a walk, I made a point of driving by the home.

I was getting excited and couldn’t wait for Saturday to come.

It’s been years since I counted the days until the weekends began – because when you’re retired, every day is Saturday!

My appointment was at 2:30 pm.

I had been up since 3:00 am that morning because of the excitement (and the fact that Holly needed to go outside to go potty).

I got to White Rock, a half-hour early, so I bought a coffee and sat in the West Beach parking lot and counted the minutes.

And then, at exactly 2:20 pm, I pulled into Anita’s driveway.

There were two cars in the driveway, and I figured that one of them belonged to another prospective renter.

I remained in my vehicle and waited patiently for the other person to leave.

A few minutes later, a man approached and asked:

Can I help you with something?

I was a bit surprised by his question, but quickly replied:

Oh, yes.  I am here to view the basement suite.

But the gentleman looked puzzled.

Excuse me?

And now I was puzzled.  I looked at the house number, and it matched what I had written in my notes.

I have an appointment at 2:30 with Anita, to view the suite.

But I could tell by his facial expression that I had made a terrible blunder.

Sorry, fella, but we don’t have a suite to rent.  And that’s my wife over there and her name isn’t Anita.

My heart sank to the floor of the vehicle as I apologized for being in his driveway.

I quickly viewed my cellphone for the emails between Anita and myself.  I also had her phone number.  But I couldn’t see where I had gotten the address from.

It must have been one of our telephone conversations.

So, at exactly 2:28 pm, I phoned Anita and explained that I had lost the address.

Anita gave me the address, and it turns out I was only three or four houses away!

I pulled into the driveway and was looking at the outside of the building for the first time.

It’s nicer than the one up the street, I thought.

I quickly jumped out of the vehicle, and my heart was racing with excitement as I approached the front door.

I rang the doorbell.

Although the walk from my vehicle to the front door took about 30 seconds, I had a vision of the last landlord I had – and I got a sudden chill at the memory.

The landlord’s name was Bruno, and he could hardly speak English.  The apartment was one of a four-unit complex in Whitby, Ontario.  It was when I had moved in with Annette before we were married.

We were great tenants, but Bruno always seemed to be angry.  Not at us but life in general.  I tried to carry a conversation with him once, but he did not seem to care for small talk.


So, I rang the doorbell and a young, pretty lady greeted me at the door.  She was wearing a mask, and I suddenly realized that I had forgotten to put on mine!

I excused myself and ran back to my vehicle to fetch a mask.  I have a dozen in the glove compartment.

Now I felt really foolish.  I hope Anita doesn’t think poorly of me.

But she was very friendly and introduced me to her husband, Ralph.

We chatted for a few minutes and then Anita took me to the suite, and I couldn’t believe my eyes!

It was exactly what my mind’s eye had envisioned.

I wanted to scream, Yes, I’ll take it!  But I remained somewhat calm, and we discussed the suite.

Anita and Ralph had over a hundred inquiries about the suite, and they had the list down to a shortlist – and I was on their list.

Anita said she would email me an application form, and I would complete it as soon as possible.

Later that day, I got Anita’s email with the application files.

But the files were in a PDF format, and I had no idea how to fill in the form because you can’t edit a PDF document unless you have an application to convert it to a Word document.

I began to panic.  It was Sunday, and I didn’t have access to my car, so I was stuck at home with no idea how to edit the document.

I called my friend Pamala, a computer genius, and she asked me to send her the files, and she would format the files so that I would be able to complete the application.

But I fell asleep watching the Blue Jays baseball game and didn’t wake up until almost 7:00 pm.

I checked my mail but hadn’t received the files back from Pamala yet, so I sent Anita an email explaining that I wouldn’t be able to complete the application form until the morning.

I usually go to bed between 8:00 pm and 9:00 pm each day and wake up between 3:30 am, and 4:00 am.

So, at 3:30 this morning, I checked and saw the email from Pamala.

I completed the application form and submitted it to Anita and Ralph.

And now, I will have to wait to see if I am the lucky person they choose to be their tenant.

Norm and I meet for coffee at 8:00 am at the Whitby House, and I will show him the place by doing a drive-by.

But then again, I don’t want to jinx myself.  Yes, I am a bit superstitious!

Maybe, I’ll hold my breath and wait.

Fingers, legs, arms, and eyes are crossed for good luck!

UPDATE:  Tuesday, March 2nd.

I spoke with Anita on Monday, and she indicated that she would be making her decision sometime today or on Wednesday.

So, either way, I will soon know if I have a place to live for Holly and me.

Stay tuned!

UPDATE:  Wednesday, March 3rd – I got a call from Anita last night and was informed that I was their choice.  Holly and I now have a place to live!  And it’s one block from the beach in White Rock!

I will be signing the lease etc., on Saturday!

I plan to move my smaller stuff between now and April 14th, the closing date on our house sale.  It will give me a chance to introduce Holly to her new surroundings slowly.

It will be the first time being on my own since 1976.

Here are some photos of my new place:

My new digs in White Rock

1 1/2 blocks from beach

Entranceway to suite
It's at the rear of house

Walkway to rear of house

includes a sheltered area

Entrance and patio
Ring and CCTV for added security

nice garden and private

sunbathing area

No maintenance!

Astro turf for Holly

Living room area

Kitchen area


Master bedroom

Master bedroom ensuite

Spare bedroom

Laundry / storage

As you can see, I’m not a great photographer but at least it will give you an idea.  It will look a lot different with furniture.

Dedicated to my new landlords (and friends), Anita and Ralph

I hope my stories are a gift to your head and heart.



Click on this Index to view my 215+ stories.

Today’s tune from Danny’s library (purchased):

My Way – lyrics

And now, the end is near
And so I face the final curtain
My friend, I’ll say it clear
I’ll state my case, of which I am certain

I lived a life that’s full
I traveled each and every highway
And more, much more than this
I did it my way

Regrets, I’ve had a few
But then again, too few to mention
I did what I had to do
And saw it through without exception

I planned each charted course
Each careful step along the byway
And more, much more than this
I did it my way

Yes, there were times, I’m sure you knew
When I bit off more than I could chew
But through it all, when there was doubt
I ate it up and spit it out
I faced it all and I stood tall
And did it my way

I loved, I laughed and cried
I’ve had my fill; my share of losing
And now, as tears subside
I find it all so amusing

To think I did all that
And may I say – not in a shy way
“Oh no, oh no, not me
I did it my way”

For what is a man, what has he got?
If not himself, then he has naught
To say the things that he truly feels
And not the words of one who kneels
The record shows I took the blows
And did it my way!

To say the things that he truly feels
And not the words of one who kneels
The record shows we took the blows
And did it my way!

Songwriters: Paul Anka / Gilles Thibaut / Claude Francois / Jacques Revaux
My Way lyrics © Jeune Musique Ed., Barclay Eddie Nouvelles Editions, Iway Holdings Sas, Chrysalis Standards Inc, Jeune Musique Edition Sarl

About Post Author

Daniel (Danny) St. Andrews

An almost famous Film, Television & Stage Actor (as in almost pregnant) living in Vancouver, BC His other passions include cancer patient advocate (he had stage 3 throat cancer), walking with the Vancouver 'Venturers Walking Club, and of course, spoiling his dog, Holly Golightly. If you like the stuff he writes about - please leave a hug (or a comment).
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By Daniel (Danny) St. Andrews

An almost famous Film, Television & Stage Actor (as in almost pregnant) living in Vancouver, BC His other passions include cancer patient advocate (he had stage 3 throat cancer), walking with the Vancouver 'Venturers Walking Club, and of course, spoiling his dog, Holly Golightly. If you like the stuff he writes about - please leave a hug (or a comment).

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