driving home that day, we had our hearts set on buying that dumpy old schoolhouse in edison. so we went straight to it. first, we tried for a bank loan, but commercial zoning required 20% down. we didn't have twenty percent down. we didn't have much more than our lofty ambitions and the support of my parents. the banks were suspicious; to them the run-down property looked more like a liability than an investment. and honestly, so did we. i guess two self-employed seat-of-pants tattooed ragamuffin artists aren't necessarily prime loan material.
next we tried for an owner contract. jeff seemed reluctant, but so far we were his only bite. james went about it in the most old-fashioned way possible, painstakingly negotiating all the details with jeff and then hand typing the terms with a typewriter on a long scroll. it was a romantic idea, but unfortunately, money talks. just when we thought we had it all figured out, jeff got a cash offer that he couldn't refuse. we tried and tried, for over a year, to stick our foot in that proverbial door, just to have our toe slammed in it. long story short, we didn't get the old schoolhouse. we were absolutely heartbroken.
after that, james couldn't get edison out of his head. he knew the fellas who bought the building. they just so happened to be two old friends of his from bellingham. as a last ditch effort, he called them, just to see if there was any slim chance they would want to sell it. no, they said. but the property across the street has a for sale sign in the window. he got the phone number and called immediately.