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House Hunters International

21 Jan

I love this show.  First, I just like looking at other houses.  But houses in Europe?  So very interesting!  They’re weird and funky and always in a cool location (well, to this U.S. citizen.)  Plus, I have a tiny dream of living in Europe, so it’s really more like research, right?

But it’s also funny, because these Americans go overseas to buy a vacation home or home abroad to relocate to and then, well, be all American.  They constantly comment about the size – or lack thereof – of bathrooms and kitchens and bedrooms.  But they want charm and quaint and historical.  You don’t get size and historical.  Not even in America. 

There was one couple who swore they wouldn’t be all American…and then did in the first home they saw.  The woman looked up at the big chandelier and said “Oh, I don’t like that, that’s obviously not Italian.”  The Italian realtor said “Actually, it is from…” and named the city.  Another couple with kids kept getting concerned about the lack of safety in all these Parisian apartments and houses.  At one point, the mother said “Oh, there’s no screen on the window.  How do we keep the two year old from falling out?”  The French realtor looked at them in surprise and said matter-of-factly “You tell him no, stay away from the window.”  HA! 

Another cute one is they never know what a bidet is.  They look at it and go “Um, what’s that?”  Certainly someone who has traveled enough to Europe to want to buy a home there should know what a bidet is, right? 

And one of the things they’re always showing is how you can buy a ruin.  As in a shell of a home that’s been abandoned or run down and needs loads of work.  This fascinates me.  You can just see the potential in some of these places, most of which are old farms, so come with outbuildings as well.  Some sell the home with the furniture included.  Others you have to bring your own kitchen, because the previous owners took the kitchen with them.  (Hence why Ikea has that “free standing kitchen” section I bet.)  I don’t know if I’ve ever seen wall-to-wall carpeting in any of these homes, but then again, I’ve never seen an escape tunnel to the beach in the floor of any American House Hunters show. 

Yes, the goal after “getting published” will be “buy a home in Europe”.  Hey, if I can manage the first, the second shouldn’t be too hard, right?

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