From zero roommates to two, moving from my little house to an apartment was a strange change, but it was totally worth it.
If you made a move like me, from an old house to a new one, you may have noticed these culture shocks too.
- Carpeting is weird, but now, your floor can be one giant sleepover.
- Drywall is the thinnest material ever made, but at least you can drill, hammer, or at least push a thumb tack through it, unlike the concrete-like adobe I have been used to.
- I can smell my neighbor’s weed and hear his weird sex noises, but that brings us closer, right?
- I actually need furniture. The way old houses were built often meant they came with built-in shelving and lots of storage. Not so much of that in a new apartment.
- I have access to an on-site gym, two pools, and three hot tubs? No complaints here.
- WTF is AC? I am so used to swamp cooling. The AC definitely dries me out, and I feel so boujee, but it really does make summer much more bearable.
Recently, I moved into an apartment with my sister and her partner. My old house in Barrio Viejo, Tucson, Arizona was adorable, old, dirty, falling apart, but mine, all mine, at least for rent, it was.
The old pipes finally burst after 105 years of being patched up and only partially redone. My little adobe shotgun style house had everything I needed. I lived alone in it for exactly three years, and the evaporative cooling, which didn’t do much in the 110 degree weather if there was even a drop of moisture in the air, kept my electricity bill low. The black widows kept me on my toes as I existed pretty closely with nature. My friendly daddy longlegs ate the flies, and my cat, Henry, had the backyard to herself.
When my landlords decided it was time for an overhaul, my sisters proposed the idea to find a new place together as they were my neighbors and were getting ready to move on themselves. I said yes and had a week to pack and leave.
As I packed up all my dust and dirt-covered items (when you live in the Barrio, your weather stripping sucks, and your hardwood floors or Mexican tiles are always dusty), I was relieved to be in a more updated house, but I reminisced on what and who I was leaving in the literal dust.
My community of neighbors was tight-knit, friendly and too quirky to be replaced. I took many things for granted, like my own shower, my own area to garden, my own kitchen, and my own privacy.
Of the most important items I took for granted was a hose and hose hook-up. (How to wash your bike without a hose article coming soon!)
I also miss my laundry room. There were two washers, but only one successfully got the job done, in the whole community. Every few days, I’d walk across the dirty lot with my wet hair held in a towel to do a load. My neighbor John would yell hi at me and laugh at my outfit choice. You can wear athletic socks, Birkenstocks, a robe, and a towel in your hair in Tucson. You just can. Actually, you can wear whatever you want whenever you want. So there.
It’s funny to think I miss our lone washer now. My sisters and I now have our own washer and dryer in the apartment.
Overall, moving was a necessity and has brought some good changes into my life. I actually regularly go to the gym, and I swim all the dang time.
My favorite parts about my new home in northern Tucson are:
- I live right on the bike path!
- I’m down the street from Trader Joe’s and some rad small businesses.
- I’m far enough from downtown to appreciate it and not get sick of the hipsters, alcoholics, or lovely combinations of both.
- I don’t see someone I know every time I walk to get my mail (sounds like a con, but I’m an introvert).
- I’m closer to so many more hiking paths.
- TRADER JOE’S!