- Faith and Fear in Flushing - http://www.faithandfearinflushing.com -

Movin' On Up

“Mr. Randolph? Hi, I'm Rachel. NLE Properties.”

“Hello Rachel. Sorry I'm running late. I had to call a last-minute departmental meeting.”

“Is everything all right?”

“Oh, just had to shake up some complacent employees. Nothing to worry about.”

“Are you sure? Because I know we're so close to signing the papers…”

“Really, just a bump in the road. And to make up for my tardiness, I brought us lunch.”

“Oh, Mr. Randolph, sandwiches. You shouldn't have.”

“No problem. I get 'em free. They're toasted.”

“Yes, of course they are…um, are they tuna?

“No. Why?”

“Thought I smelled fish.”

“That's just from my job. We had a problem with some fish last night. That's why I had to call the meeting.”

“I see…oh, this is our floor. Penthouse.”

“Whoa! Nice.”

“Yes, I thought it would be a good idea if we looked around one more time. Now you're sure you're going to take the place?”

“Rachel, I've always been a winner. And this is where winners live, right?”

“I'm glad to hear you say that. Between you and me, I get my biggest commissions when I can get a new client into the penthouse. It's been a while. Twice I thought Mr. Valentine was going to take this space, but things fell through at the last minute.”

“Uh-huh.”

“Now what day were you thinking about moving in?”

“Any day now. Maybe as soon as Wednesday night if all goes well.”

“Is that when you expect to be ready?”

“Can't say for sure. I'll be traveling Thursday. Could take 'til the weekend. Can't imagine it will be much longer. That all right?”

“Oh, that's fine. Gives us plenty of time to get the old tenant out.”

“Old tenant? You mean this place isn't vacant yet? Seems pretty empty.”

“Well, technically the old tenant has another day on the lease. He's been moving out in stages since April. There's hardly any sign of him here anymore.”

“Hmmm…say these closets aren't empty.”

“That must be all that's left of his belongings. You know, the man who had this place has been here for a long time. I thought we were going to get a new tenant from Canada back in '94, but that whole summer was crazy.”

“I see. But his stuff will be out?”

“Absolutely.”

“Because it's kind of creepy seeing all those tomahawks in the closet.”

“Believe me, Mr. Randolph, everything will be ready for you to move in when you're ready.”

“What's with this guy? There must be like 14 of those things in this closet!”

“We try not to pry. Mr. Cox hasn't been a bad neighbor. A little grouchy of late, but he knows the rules.”

“Also, this place needs a paint job. It's all red and white. I don't care for that at all.”

“Oh, we'll have it repainted for when you move in. What colors would you prefer?”

“Do you have blue and orange?”

“I was in the warehouse this morning and saw we have a nice stockpile of cans of those two colors. The company ordered a case of it around 1988. They thought we'd be using a lot of it in the penthouse. I'm not sure what happened.”

“Uh-huh.”

“I see you're admiring the picture windows. Lovely isn't it?”

“I'll say. This is a great view. I can look down on everybody from here. You know I've visited the penthouse in your complex across town…”

“At ALE Properties? You know Mr. Torre?”

“Oh, we've shared a few sandwiches.”

“He's very happy there. He used to live in this building, though not on the top floor.”

“Uh-huh.”

“Say, you know what I found out from one of our more tenured agents the other day? When this structure was built in 1969, there was something of a struggle over who would get custody of this penthouse.”

“You don't say.”

“Funny story. A Mr. Durocher was all set to move in. Had all his suits and hats — big clotheshorse, they say — on racks right by the elevator. Had a truck from the liquor store around the corner coming by to stock the wet bar and everything. But then you know what happened?”

“He didn't get the penthouse?”

“Exactly! A Mr. Hodges moved in, right in front of him. That was before my time but they say he was a really nice man.”

“I've heard.”

“Didn't stay long. Same for Mr. Berra and Mr. Johnson. They all worked for the same company as you, didn't they?”

“Uh-huh.”

“Well, we certainly hope you'll be able to take out a longer-term lease on the place.”

“I hope so, too.”

“Any other questions, Mr. Randolph?”

“No, looks good. Like I said, I'm ready to sign the papers and get my stuff in here by the weekend.”

“Great. NLE Properties will be happy to have you.”

“One thing…”

“Yes?”

“Please be sure to get those tomahawks out of the closet. No kidding, they really creep me out.”