Thirteen years ago. I was in the market for a new house. Or a condo. I couldn’t make up my mind.
The houses I saw—much like the house I was leaving—had lawns and extensive flowerbeds and overgrown trees, and I was tired of weeding and mowing the lawn. The condos, on the other hand, were small, expensive, and too far from the ground.
Then one day I stumbled upon this house. It belonged to a thirty-six house development in a quiet, friendly neighborhood, walking distance from town. And the price was right. Perfect!
Every choice has its trade-offs, though. I would have to abide by the rules of the homeowners’ association. No political yard signs, no dogs running free, and all the houses must remain the color the developer painted them: Seashell.
Fine. Freedom is never absolute. And what does the color of my house matter in the larger scheme of things?
Years passed in my Seashell colored house. And then last year, the homeowners voted to change the rules and allow more colors. The Architecture Committee got to work and came up with a pallet of six acceptable colors: Gateway Grey, Barcelona Beige, Camelback, Curio Grey, Cardboard, and Seashell.
I spent a few months staring at my choices. Nothing jumped out at me. Gateway Grey? Barcelona Beige? Ho-hum. Before I could make up my mind, the news came out. We could paint our houses any color we liked.
It seems someone had taken the time to read the rule book and found that there never had been a restriction on house colors. Go figure.
So … I visited the local paint store, poured over the colors in their extensive display, brought color cards home and held them up in sunshine and shade. The color I chose is called Blustery Sky, a shade of blue. It looks brighter on some days than others. I like the contrast with my Heavenly Bamboo.
All those years I’d been fine with a monochromatic neighborhood. Now that we have a more colorful neighborhood, I’m really enjoying not only my new house color, but the combination of colors my neighbors and I have chosen.