a little something extra

Wednesday, September 21, 2005


I thought I'd start the series of "home" postings by describing the place I live now. I'm going to try to give a satisfying level of detail without making it too easy for any Internet drive-by to stalk me.

I've been living in my present apartment for about 6 1/2 weeks now. Long enough for me to know a few different ways to get here; long enough to know where the nearest fire station, police station, library, grocery store(s), church(es), municipal buildings and parks are. Long enough to realize that I actually picked a really good location, even though I had not a blessed idea what I was doing when I made my plan to move here.

The apartment is in a complex. I have complex feelings about that.

Generally, I'm not into cookie-cutter architecture. I would rather have a place that looks individual, as my townhouse in Georgia does. It's part of a larger community and is physically connected to the houses on either side, but every house in the community looks slightly different on the outside, as well as being subjected to its owner's decorating whims on the inside.

But this post is not about that house, it's about this apartment. Which is a one-bedroom, one-bath flat in a building of eight identical flats. Mine is one of four on the second (top) floor. I hate having upstairs neighbors, and since I generally don't wear shoes at home, don't play music loudly and walk very quietly, my downstairs neighbors usually get a good deal. I don't have downstairs neighbors now. Which makes me happy, because my second night here the person who lived downstairs spent the entire night having a knock-down, drag-out, screaming building-shaking fight with the person I can only presume was her boyfriend. After that fight, I hope he's her ex.

Anyway. She's moved out, and I live upstairs from nobody at the moment.

My place has vaulted ceilings, thanks to the upper-storiness. The living room has a wood-burning fireplace, which I devoutly hope it will get cold enough for me to use. The living room and the bedroom both have sliding doors that open onto the balcony, which faces south-ish. I haven't furnished the balcony yet, but I expect that when I do I'll make much use of that space.

Not that I've furnished the living room either. It's about half done. My desk is in here, with my filing cabinet and the bookshelf I bought at IKEA last weekend. (Imagine the shelves dark brown instead of birch-colored.) The home electronics are in here, and a string of fabric birds my friend Becca gave me hang in front of the sliding glass doors. You're supposed to hang these birds by your front door, but I have no good way to do that.

The dining room is separated from the living room by a half-high wall. It also has a big double window onto the ubiquitous balcony, so it gets good light. The kitchen has oak cabinets and a surprising amount of usable space, given that the apartments are 20+ years old. The dishwasher is running right now, since I tried a new recipe earlier this evening. Note to self: there just is no good vegetarian substitute for bacon. Don't even try.

The bedroom is at the back of the apartment, with the bathroom opening off it. There's a somewhat irritating quirk of California architecture which places the sink in the bedroom, and the commode and bath/shower in a separate little room. I'd rather have the sink in the little room too, unregenerate Yankee latte-sipping East Coast elitist that I am.

The washing machine, dryer (also presently running) and water heater are in a small room of their own off the balcony. There's an interesting-looking spider occupying a web outside my front door. I've discovered that California has very few bugs but lots of spiders. You'd think there would be a food-supply/demand problem there, but Mother Nature seems to have worked it out somehow.

There's a lot I still have to unpack properly and put away. The sofa and chair I ordered are to be delivered a week from Sunday, and I'll tell you, I am very much looking forward to having a comfortable place to sit and read. I have to acquire more bookshelves (used, preferably) and put up the paintings and photos I have collected from people I love and past experiences.

But for now, I have to balance my checkbook and fold my laundry. Ah, the glamorous life of the theatre artiste.

Have a good night.


At 7:56 PM , Blogger Quev said...

What a good idea for a blogging theme! Online communication is typically so devoid of a sense of the physical space we occupy. It's interesting to get more of a three-dimensional idea of where you're liing.

At 9:29 AM , Blogger meeegan said...

Let me credit my companion blogger Ben, then -- "home" was his idea!

At 10:26 AM , Blogger Erin said...

Well, the whole "outdoor laundry" thing is a little unusual, but otherwise it sounds like a very cool place -- can't wait to visit, and perhaps help with bookcase acquisition?

At 10:48 AM , Blogger meeegan said...

If I haven't achieved shelf sufficiency by the time you come out to visit, we will definitely put some consignment places on our itinerary.

Can't wait to see you!

At 3:06 PM , Blogger Erin said...

Penalty flag for ridiculous punning -- or, as Charlie Brown would say: Aauuuughhh!


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