Locals who bought town made national, international news
The seller possibly was tired of talking to reporters, passing a message along to her buyers.
At least one of those buyers didn’t seem to mind at all.
And that was after getting off the phone with the BBC and the National Enquirer.
Yes, that National Enquirer, although Maddie Love said the reporter she spoke with insisted the magazine has left its tabloid past behind.
By the time this sees print, Love planned to have made the roughly 260-mile, five-hour drive to her new home in Wauconda, Wash., which she and husband Neal Love (ages 48 and 50, respectively) shortly will own lock, stock and Post Office.
As has been reported in a few other media outlets, the Bothell couple plan to purchase what amounts to the entire town of Wauconda: a presently closed restaurant, a small store, a gas station, a four-bedroom home and the already mentioned Post Office.
“We wanted to do something to change our lives, to reinvent ourselves,” said Maddie Love.
Love intends to move to Wauconda ahead of her husband, who she said is not unemployed, contrary to what might have been said in other news reports. She said Neal Love will continue working his 12-hour-a-day shifts while also getting ready to sell the Love’s Bothell home and virtually everything they own to meet the Wauconda purchase price of $360,000.
Maddie Love said once in Wauconda, her first order of business is to work with former property owner Daphne Fletcher, 42, to reopen the Wauconda restaurant. In fact, Love is already planning a grand reopening with barbecue and burgers and, probably most importantly to her, the opportunity to meet the people who are going to be her neighbors, as well as the customers in her new enterprise.
Incidentally, when the Wauconda Cafe and Spaghetti Saloon reopens, the “spaghetti” part of the title likely will be gone, Love added.
OK. So here’s the big question. Why?
Love again talked about she and her husband reassessing their lives. She said they had been thinking about doing something drastic for some time and the idea of Wauconda just kept coming up. They actually had thought of buying the town in the past, but said the original asking price was too high.
“It just seems like everything is now working out they way it was supposed to,” Love added.
According to Love, the couple is familiar with the area for a couple of reasons. Tragically, her father died in a plane accident in nearby Davenport.
But the Loves also know the town and area from their Harley rides through that eastern part of the state. They already have close friends there. Love admits the spot is isolated, but that’s obviously a huge plus in her mind.
“It’s God’s country, no doubt,” she said, adding there is no cell-phone service, that you can see the stars at night and hear the crickets. One thing you don’t hear is any sirens.
“We’ve got the fire station right by our house,” Love said of her Bothell residence. “I’m not going to miss that at all.”
While they are going to have to raise money for the purchase, Love said making money is not a part of the overall plan.
In terms of attracting business to the cafe and gas station, Love said Wauconda’s Highway 20 gets plenty of traffic in the summer. Otherwise, she’s counting on the locals, hoping, for example, to attract the quilting club back to the cafe. Love plans on having the cafe open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. and isn’t worried about putting in 14-hour workdays.
In order to raise the money to buy Wauconda, Love seems serious about selling virtually everything the couple owns. They plan a large garage sale and Love even mentioned selling her wedding ring, if needed.
“I told my husband, it’s all material things, stuff we don’t need,” she said. “We’ll go up there with the clothes on our back and our Harleys, that’s it.”
Laughing, she adds, the couple will include their lawn mower in the garage sale.
“We have goats over there,” Love said.
Joking aside, Love admits to feeling a little overwhelmed at this point.
“I’m scared, but I’m looking forward to it all, too,” she said. “It’ll be interesting, that’s all I can say.
“We have to try. If you don’t try, you can’t complain.”