The Joys of Renting an Apartment

So this semester I’ve gone through a little bit of a change when it comes to housing. That’s right: I’m now an off-campus student living in my very own  one-bedroom apartment. No more roommates, no more family members, just me, myself and I (…okay, me, myself, and I and my cat). Independence, baby!

Of course, there are also drawbacks when it comes to renting an apartment. There are a lot more bills to worry about. When I lived on-campus all I had to do was pay off my bursar account at the beginning of the semester, with tuition, fees and all of my housing expenses knocked out in one big easy payment. Now I have to remember to pay my rent, gas and electricity bills every month.

Another problem: my apartment is old. Like, Great Depression era old. And the updates and maintenance on it have obviously not been…frequent. So I’ve had LOTS of fun little problems, (no locks on the windows, no hose on the hot water heater emergency valve, front door refusing to open) which has resulted in me getting on first-name basis with pretty much every employee at my property management company. I’m pretty sure I have most of their cell phone numbers on speed-dial too.

One other “fun” thing I’ve been experiencing: never-ending maintenance! For some reason, out of the blue, the owner of the property has decided he wants to fix up my apartment, the apartment below mine and the surrounding houses. The best part is that despite the fact that I wasn’t in the apartment ALL SUMMER, he decided to get all of this rolling on the very first week of school. Which means for the past month I’ve gotten to experience the joy of having my entire apartment rewired (including several 100°+ days of my electrical breaker failing), all of the windows in my recently deep-cleaned and decorated living space replaced, and having new siding put up. Which is nice in the end, don’t get me wrong, but when you have 8 strangers stomping around inside your apartment for 8 hours a day for more than a week, a thin coat of red dirt all over everything you own and a very unhappy overheated cat it’s a little hard to think of the positive. Luckily all of the windows are now replaced, the electricity is fixed and the indoor work is complete, so I’m done with having workers in my apartment constantly, but I still get the pleasure of waking up to blaring talk radio and nail guns at 7 a.m.. The things we put up with for beauty.

Even with all of this craziness going on, I’m happy to be living on my own. It’s a new wave of freedom that I haven’t experienced before, and it makes me feel like a Real Live Grown-up (okay, yes, I am almost 21 and I’ve been out of the house for 3 years. But this is a whole new level of…grown-upness). It was amazing to transform this dumpy little apartment into somewhere I can call my own. And it’s nice to be able to buy all my own groceries and cook for myself. Though, if I’m being honest, the Jimmy John’s delivery drivers are beginning to recognize me. (I’m being 100% serious. The other day one of them told me that he thought he could find my house faster than their other drivers because he remembered the quickest way to get there.)

And because I like to show it off, here’s a quick photo-tour of my living space:

The entrance hall. The door is TARDIS blue.

My kitchen!

The bedroom.

The living room – pt. 1

The living room – pt. 2

The living room – pt. 3

The living room – pt. 4!

Recent photo I’m proud of: This one I snapped of a band member at a recent football game.

Song I can’t get out of my head: Ha Ha Tonka‘s “Usual Suspects,” from their GENIUS new album Death of a Decade.

Video I can’t stop watching: The trailer for David Fincher‘s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. This thing has been out since MAY and I’m STILL watching it. I read the entirety of Stieg Larsson‘s Millennium Series over the summer, prompted by excitement for this movie. I cannot WAIT to see it in December. The trailer’s gorgeously cut together and the cover of Immigrant Song by Trent Reznor (who won an Oscar with Atticus Ross last year for composing the score of Fincher’s The Social Network) and Karen O (of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs) packs a heavy punch into less than 2 minutes of footage.

It also spawned this parody from The Muppets:

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