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Tiny Spaces, Strange Places

Ooooh apartment living, how very strange you are.

I lived my entire life in a ranch style house (my parents house) before getting married (minus a few early years I don't remember in a trailer and duplex). I romanticized the idea of apartment-living because it meant my OWN space! Freedom! And that first year or two, it was pretty fun. We collected our own furniture, most of which was bought for us or given to us.

 In the years that followed, we quickly began to outgrow our space and "upgraded" to a 2-bedroom with close to 300 extra square feet. We quickly filled that up as well, but as long as I keep a handle on our clutter and try to toss or give away what we don't use or need, the space stays manageable.

 My husband LOVES apartment living. Mainly because, we have no yard work to do, since he hates to mow. Also because, anytime something breaks, it's someone else's job to fix AND pay for it ;-) But there are some other odd things that take place when you live in an apartment. Such as...

 * occasionally we are required to bring all of our patio furniture, grill, and other outdoor stuff, INSIDE our apartment so that they can spray wash, paint, spray for bugs, etc. Now, I appreciate the thought, but who has room for all of their outdoor furniture inside an apartment that is less than 1,000 sq ft?? Not to mention if they decide not to do their scheduled work on the given day.

 * there has been more than one occasion when I have been home, in just a robe or otherwise indisposed and the maintenance people have come by, banging on the door. If you don't make it to the door in time to answer, they WILL let themselves in. Most recently, I was in bed when it happened, barely awake, I stumbled to my bedroom door and locked it thinking, just let them come in and do what they need to do, I'm going back to bed. Yet, Mr. Maintenance man came all through the apartment yelling, Maintenance!! and banging on doors. I confessed to my whereabouts, got dressed and stumbled out to my coffee maker, greeted by three strange men in my living room. WEIRD. (they had come to fix our AC, which I WAS in fact happy about)

 * you hear really strange noises sometimes. like one night at 4 am I got up like most pregnant ladies do throughout the night, and I heard yelling, crying and running in the apartment above us. It was really frightening and sounded terrible! I ended up calling the police, but never heard anything else about it or from them. Strange.

 * neighbors can be way too close for comfort. we have one particular, middle aged lady who lives next door as well as her cohort who lives above her. Neither of them can stand the smell of smoke from a grill or firepit. Yet, they like to leave their doors or windows open every night of the summer. We follow all of the apartment regulations for our firepit, including that it be kept a minimum of 4 ft away from the building. We have received a note from the leasing office about complaints that our firepit smoke was getting into the windows of some of the other residents. When I called to ask about it (since we did everything required of us by the rules) they asked me to "be mindful of the direction of the wind." Hmmm. So, now, I am meant to control the direction of the wind?? Now, I understand they are trying to keep everyone happy, but really??

 There are definitely positives to living where we do. We have a beautiful open yard right off our back patio which gets mowed for us once a week or so. Anytime so much as a lightbulb goes out, our handy dandy maintenance men come to the rescue at (mostly) little inconvenience to us. We pay a minimum amount to rent the space we live in and that saves us loads of money. I enjoy being able to vacuum my entire apartment from one outlet (at least the front few rooms). But there are many things I look forward to having in a home. More privacy, control and simply more space.

Life in a house will be grand! But I remember the days when all I wanted was to live in an apartment of my own, and I count my blessings. It seems we are always in pursuit of the things we don't yet have. There is nothing really wrong with that, as long as we are enjoying the ride. We will definitely have some funny stories and great memories from our apartment living days. I'm sure I wouldn't trade those for anything. It's what keeps life interesting, right?

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