When will Vermont start feeling like home?


I’m 3,000 miles away from my birth place and the state where I resided for most of my life. I took a train journey across the United States because I felt compelled and because I had a dream of working with animals in Vermont.

Photo by George Becker on Pexels.com

And while half the people I shared this dream with thought I had lost my mind, perhaps because of the pandemic, a small handful of friends and a family member encouraged me to pursue my dream. One friend told me that it was my destiny even though I worried that I wouldn’t secure housing or actually manifest my dream of starting a holistic retreat center for dogs.

Oddly, despite my intention of working with animals, this dream appears to be a slow brew. I’ve been working instead as a journalist which is my fallback career. Meanwhile, permanent housing has evaded me because my previous landlords won’t act as rental references for whatever reason. One set of landlords retired and I don’t know what the excuse is for the other ones. I need a miracle at this point.

The other situation is that I have run into Negative Nellies. You know the people who tell you all the reasons why you can’t have what you want, even though they have homes, they have jobs, and they have a good quality of life. I have an issue with these know-it-alls. They remind me of the donkey character in Winnie the Pooh. “We’ll never make it…”

Now, I can beat myself up and pile on the regrets or I can accept my circumstances, brainstorm, and find a new way forward. My dream is unconventional so maybe I’ll find some kind of unconventional housing situation. Previous landlords are overrated anyway as are previous employers. We all grow and change so the people we were went we associated with the landlords and employers are not who we are today.

I have no tips to give anyone about dealing with landlords who refuse to respond to reference requests. I have no tips on how to rent an apartment in today’s market. I know decades ago, I had solid references but I have no idea where these people are now. I’m in my late fifties. This leaves me wondering what people do when they never had a landlord reference. What if they got married out of high school and then after a divorce lose the house and have to rent for the first time? Or what if a person moves back in with a parent to take care of them for a few weeks that turns into several years? And their previous landlords have moved on?

Anyway, this is my rant on the housing situation. If you have any solutions please leave them in the comments below. And if you have enjoyed the articles on this blog, please support it with a kind donation. Thank you.