1973: Timbaloo!
We really wanted to return to the Cambridge Ward, but home prices within those boundaries ran a bit high for our financial situation. Checked out a couple of nice houses in Winchester in the $60,000 range, but that was more than we were prepared to pay.

Then we learned that John and Magdalene Mahairas wanted $49,900 for this place at 82 Appleton Street in Arlington Heights. Went to see it, fell in love, and stopped looking. It became “Timbaloo” almost instantaneously.* The price was within our range, and we made no effort to negotiate it down. The deed and the $39,900 mortgage (at 7½%) from Cambridge Savings Bank both bear the date of 29 May 1973. That would be our Justin’s minus-fifth birthday, but we didn’t know that, of course.
We sold the Burlington house for $37,500. Allowing for the usual cloying array of closing costs, our profit on the sale came to $2097.75. Not terrible, considering that it also sheltered us for nearly two and a half years.

We couldn’t know it then, but our Arlington investment has turned out to provide, in large measure, the financial security of our old age. We’ve never been clever about money, but Providence has been kind, particularly in letting us enjoy Timbaloo.
*See Edward Lear, “The Jumblies”
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