I’ve written before about our search for a new apartment. We thought we’d found an acceptable apartment in CT; but we got a weird and bad vibe from the management after following up on it. So we scratched that option.
Yesterday we explored what may be the perfect town: Rhinebeck, NY. The apartments we saw are exactly 6 tenths of a mile from the village center, which includes three coffee shops, an ice cream shop, a pizza joint, a Chinese restaurant, a Tex-Mex restaurant, and a weird combo restaurant serving Italian and steak. On top of all these eateries, the village has a small cinema that shows art films, a small department store, a shoe store, an arts supply store, a tobacconist, and two pharmacies. Of all these businesses, only one is a chain (a CVS pharmacy).
The apartments are 2.6 miles from the Amtrak station. Not really a walkable trip to the train, but easily bike-able. On those days when I’d want to drive, it would take about 10 minutes to drive there. I can also drive to the MetroNorth station which is about 30 minutes down the road.
The apartments are really affordable: $845/mo for a 1 bedroom and $955/mo for a 2 bedroom. That includes heat and hot water, which is damn good because our gas bill this month is $250. Furthermore, the management has no problem with cats and doesn’t even charge a deposit for them – much less an additional monthly rent per cat like most of NJ and Westchester.
Now the bad news: the total commute from door to office would be around 2.5 hours. The train takes 1:45 to get from Rhinecliff station to NY Penn station. If I were to bike to the station, that would probably take 30 min. At the other end, I expect 15 minutes to an half hour subway to get to the office.
So, is all this wonderful stuff worth five hours every day? I don’t know. If I did bike to and from the station, I’d get about an hour of exercise each day, which is exactly 60 minutes more than I currently get. And on those days when I feel lazy, I can drive (or be driven) to the station.