Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A World of Its Own

It may be hard to believe, but this is the first time I've lived in an apartment building. After living in the dorms for two years in undergrad, three friends and I rented a small house and never looked back.

There were many reasons we felt houses were superior to apartments:

*Having a yard meant we could own a grill and host summer parties
*Lots of basement storage
*Driveways and parking out front
*Being able to be as loud or as quiet as we wanted anytime
*And,in all of my houses before Boston, we were lucky enough to have our own washer and dryer

So to me the move to an apartment was both exciting and sad at the same time. Living in a ridiculously small, old and overpriced apartment in Manhattan is the dream. If you are lucky enough to find one in a great neighborhood like Gramercy, you are envied every time someone hears you mention your address.

Our apartment building was built in 1902 and is pretty large by Manhattan standards. We put up a wall and converted a two bedroom into a three bedroom. The walls are thin so you are always conscious of the fact that you can't be too loud. But living in the city you get pretty used to the idea that you really have no privacy anyway.

We have very little storage space, but we've gotten creative. The lack of space though is positive. It has made me eliminate a lot of possessions and now I always think twice before purchasing things. I will be all set when it comes time to move out :)

I enjoy passing my neighbors in the hallway and trying to deduce what their lives are like through brief exchanges and observation. I know there is an older Irish guy who lives on the top floor. I know the three girls next door love karaoke and I also know the guy who lives above me works in Midtown because I've seen him on the bus. I know the mailman and the housekeeping lady.

I still miss having a yard and having more space, but when you live in a city as large as NYC, sometimes your apartment building makes the world seem just a bit smaller.

No comments: