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In the Nick of Time

In late August, about 20 years ago, the buyers (my clients) insisted that contract language be inserted that “closing must take place the Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday of Thanksgiving week.”

The sellers balked at the clause; they didn’t want to be disturbed that week, preferring to close in the weeks before or after.  My clients insisted, and as buyers ruled at that time, too, the sellers gave in.

Each week, from late September through early November, Ms. Buyer reminded me that the closing had to take place Thanksgiving week.  I somehow vaguely had the impression it was a work/time-off related issue, so I never discussed it further  than to reassure her that I had plenty of time blocked for her that week, and sellers’ attorney was well aware of the deadline, too.

Title issues were resolved, bank demands were satisfied, and closing was set up for the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.  If you were in the vicinity, I’m positive you also heard Ms. B yell “HALLELEUJAH!” when I called her with the date, time, and location for closing.

After the closing concluded, my clients and I were making small-talk as I packed up my briefcase.  Weren’t we all glad, I mused, that this fell into place so that work wasn’t an issue?

“Work?” Ms. B. was laughing at me. “This had nothing to do with work!”

Mr. B. shook his head in a loving way and walked out. His wife elaborated, “You see, we’ve been married 20 years.  And for 20 years his mother and my mother come for Thanksgiving and pick on everything.  The decorating.  The dishes.  The food.  Everything.   But this year I have the perfect excuse when they start to pick away.  I get to say ‘What do you want from me?  I just moved in two days ago!’”

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