It might be a little dramatic to suggest that the times are changing for the world at large any more than they usually do, but the times for John and I are certainly on the move. We moved out of the closet that was our sorry excuse of our apartment for the last year into a yup-tastic condo community this weekend. It’s got a pool and AC and appliances and everything.
And I do mean everything—including neighbors.
We got the keys on Thursday and decided to camp out on the floor so we could stay late getting a few things ready for the real move. I had painted a substantial chunk of the apartment and I just wanted to keep going, and we wanted to assemble and coo over the cunning widdle pre-drilled holes of John’s Ikea desk, which has been weighing down our car for a month. (I admit, we got a bit ahead of ourselves on that one.)
The sexiness of the apartment had us both a little giddy. We have a porch, for goodness’ sake, and an icemaker! As John put it, we will actually need to be watchful of our energy habits in this apartment, because it is luxuriously full of energy-wasters. Not so much an issue in our last place, where our energy consumption was capped by what we could safely plug into two outlets. Anyway, when we finally crashed on the floor that first night, well after midnight, we were so happy with the place that even curling up on the hard wood floors seemed like a luxury.
I’ve been a big bundled ball of nerves and energy this week, between the apartment and the new job which I have more or less been hired for (pending the completion of an Everest of paperwork), so sleeping hasn’t been easy even when I’m exhausted. And while the floor might have felt luxurious, it’s not quite meant to be a mattress, is it? I don’t think I managed to hit a decently sound sleep until something like three in the morning, about an hour before we met our first neighbor.
I had been listening to all the echoing sounds of emptiness in my nerved-jangled state as I was trying to fall asleep, and part of the reason I took so long to drift off to dreamland was the fact that every clunk of the icemaker or hum of the AC turning back on jolted me into an adrenaline-flooded certainty that burglars were in the next room. So when the ceiling above us creaked at four in the morning, it broke my tentative hold on sleep in a heartbeat.
Creak, creak, creak. CREAK. CREak, CrEaK. Creakcreakcreakcreakcreak….CREAK. Creak! Cre…ak? Creak, creak, creak, CreaK. Creak, creak, creak. CREAK. CREak, CrEaK. CREAK. Creak! Cre…ak? Creakcreakcreakcreakcreak….CREAK. Creak! Cre…ak? Creak, creak, creak, CreaK. Creak, creak, creak. CREAK. CREak, CrEaK. Creakcreakcreakcreakcreak….CREAK. Creak! Cre…ak? Creak, creak, creak, CreaK.
Apparently, the floor that forms the ceiling of our bedroom incredibly creaky and we have a neighbor who likes to pace back and forth before even the sun has decided that it’s time to start the day. Sunday morning, same routine. Today I was actually exhausted enough to sleep through it, but according to John, it looks like this early racket is going to be a routine.
This has the potential to be an enormous problem, but I think it may turn out to be a bit of a blessing. My new job (if I actually manage to confirm it) will be dragging me out of bed just as early, which will take a bit of adjustment. Having to work such early hours may be the best coping mechanism for a neighbor’s irritating habits, and having such an irritating neighbor may well prove to be invaluable as an alarm clock.
See? This apartment really does have everything.