Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Apartment Update

I moved into my new apartment the last weekend in February. I stressed so much about the move, while E was chill the whole time (figures). The total cost of the move ended up being little more than one cab fare on the very last day with a few extra bags, so I was very, very happy with how that worked out. I didn't really have any furniture, except for my bed, which I sold, but I still had a nightstand and mounds of clothes to move. The move ended up happening in three parts. A couple weeks before the move, E had borrowed a friend’s car since he was going to multiple Trey concerts. We moved a bunch of stuff after work, which was great.

Then, the second-to-last week in February, E had to rent a car for work. The only car they had at the time was a huge plumbing van, like the kind serial killers use. He decided to take it, even though it was a pain to drive, since it would be convenient for the move. It was so big I had to help navigate. Anyway, that was fabulous. We were able to load up my nightstand, side table, mirror, and my millions of bags. I didn’t really have boxes, so a lot of stuff I just piled into random large purses and garbage bags. The next day, I scoured craigslist for cheap furniture and we ended up buying two bookcases for the apartment (for under $100!) that fit quite easily into the van. I was also very happy because when E bought a bed a few months ago the security guy yelled at us because it’s a co-op and you have to use special moving passes whenever you’re moving stuff, so they can pad the elevators. You’re also not allowed to use luggage carts to move furniture. We disobeyed both of those rules but didn’t get yelled at again, for which I was grateful.

The weekend after moving in my stuff, we went to Home Depot and bought everything you could possibly need for home improvement...well, almost everything. A drill, drill bits, screws, superglue, picture hanging things, extra hooks. A really nice worker helped us, and he told us to fill out this customer service thing online, which I did. I hope he gets recognized for his good work!

E turned out to be a whiz with the drill and it feels so nice to have hooks and, thus far, one picture hung. The only problem is my plant hook. In my last apartment, my philodendron hung from my window, but I think by our windows it’s steel, because even our masonry (aka concrete) bit wouldn’t go through the wall. It’s now hanging precariously in the middle of the living room because it seems to need to have all its leaves hanging to survive. I just bought a side-mount plant hook at Kmart during my lunch break so I hope that that will do the trick.

I’m pretty happy with the new space, but I hate hate hate all the old fixtures. There is just decades of grime that won’t lift, no matter how hard you try. The enamel coating has worn off the 60s-era sink and bathtub, so it’s porous and stains quickly and leaves weird dirt streaks. Doors are broken and shredded and don't close very well and are covered with layers and layers of paint. Our kitchen cabinets don’t close. The whole apartment needs to be repainted. A lot of things are covered in paint from the previous haphazard paint job. The toilet leaks. The ceiling has water damage that we need to call maintenance about. We’re missing blinds (working on that) and are hit with blinding afternoon sun on the weekends. The areas that do have blinds have orange or blue mini blinds. I hate 60s and 70s-era color choices. The floors are a little scuffy-looking….and did I mention WE DO NOT HAVE A DISHWASHER??? This is very dire, given that we cook EVERY DAY and have all these nasty dishes in the sink. I bought some heavy-duty washing gloves at Home Depot that hopefully won’t hole up in like a week like the other ones. At least that way I can wash in hot water AND have hands that don’t feel painfully dry. However, it is really frustrating to be in an apartment that needs so much fixing up. Laura, I am jealous of your well-refurbished apartment. However, I need to keep the benefits in mind: HUGE apartment (by New York standards). 19th floor view of NYC, Brooklyn Bridge. A balcony to go outside and enjoy the view. Laundry in the basement (another only-in-New-York-it’s-a-luxury). Rent…well I think the rent is reasonable by New York standards (at least when it’s split with boyfriend), but it’s still like mortgage-level.

Oh yes, and an apartment to share with the boyfriend!! I’m actually really pleased with how far we’ve come already with the apartment, and we have a Salvation Army pick-up in a couple of weeks so we’ll have a little more space in our closets (another New York luxury). But that doesn't mean that when I'm searching for my next place I will want it to be sanded and painted and have non-vinyl, chipping countertops. Ugh. My apartment and I definitely have a love-hate relationship.

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