606 Benton


I am moving once again. I must box up my belongings. Take down my photos. Fold my clothes.

I will miss my little apartment.













It was "me," for me and supported by me alone, for the past five-and-a-half months. It is the first residence in which I have had total freedom; to go to bed when I wanted, to wake up when I wanted. I could drink wine at 1:00 in the afternoon, take showers two hours later. I could leave my keys on the window seat, on the microwave, on my computer cabinet. When I would wake up, the messiness or, what was more likely, cleanliness of the apartment would be identical to the messiness or cleanliness of the apartment the night before.

Shoes could be put away in the magenta shoe rack I recycled from college. Flip-flops and flats could be kicked off and onto the rug next to my computer. My hairbrush, over there. My phone charger, here. ChapSticks would remain on counters and on nightstands. My orderly disorganized stack of paperwork and newspapers would remain on the bench.

My apartment, one of five in a house built in 1899, is halfway decayed. But it is beautiful and wonderful. Crown molding. Ten-foot ceilings. The largest bathtub I have ever seen. Original fixtures. Large windows. A nine-foot front door. Hand-placed tiles. A creaky, yet interestingly curved staircase. A sunroom. A wrap-around porch that had been transformed into an apartment. Pocket doors. A fireplace. A stained-glass window I can see from the window in my kitchen.








It has its shortcomings though, too. My apartment is the smallest in the house, one that I would wager to be at least 3,500 square feet. The only room of my efficiency that bothers me, though, is my kitchen. It is a small, 4x6 rectangle of flooring, with only a sliver of countertop. It is dark and claustrophobic, and I must maneuver my hips, diagonally even, between the counter and the spectacularly old stove to get to my cupboards.


Furthermore, the house is entirely drafty, and is without air conditioning. There are some cracks in the ceilings, the floors, the walls. While crookedness and angles typically lead to an establishment's demise, I believe that this house, like the Weasleys' Burrow, is held together by magic.


There are notes and postcards plastered to my refrigerator, but I will not miss it, as it over-cools things and sounds like a mild car crash whenever it shuts off. The jolting compressor still wakes me from my dreams, shocks me and causes me to gasp in fright during the late hours. The sounds from my largest appliance are not the only noises that disturb my serenity. The endless steam of semis, cars and motorcycles on Benton can be distracting, especially when trying to sleep at 2 a.m., with windows thrown wide in hopes of catching a nonexistent breeze. The trains, a few blocks away, honk and whine, badgering my slumber. My fiance had hoped that I would get used to the noise; alas, my freakish hearing, combined with my always having been a light sleeper, have kept me awake all these months.


Nor will I miss propping up the heavy windows.


I still love this apartment, though. It is mine; entirely mine. When guests did visit me, they remarked at how it was so "me." Though I could not see it, I appreciated their comments because, in time, this place had become comfortable. A home. It had its character; its antique charm. I had a supportive and friendly landlord. A grocery store within walking distance. A garage.

If I were to ever be in a position to rent something like this again--a house itself, or an apartment within a house--I would do it. Why? Because I prefer the old, the used, the forgotten, the well-loved, the misshapen. Because it's, well, because it's "me."

And while we're discussing what is "me," I will tell you that I am not one to wash dishes. I despise doing dishes and, as I have never had a dishwasher, I procrastinate in washing them. Just the other day, I was without bowls, plates, silverware or pots. I rediscovered my college roots when I stirred up the makings of a tuna fish sandwich in an deep, wide plastic cup (which had actually been part of a "here, take this free junk" promotion at a housing fair at Purdue).

Most bloggers will shy away from sharing images of their messes, but, here I am, sharing with you who I am and what I do.

I am a hater of dishes. (But a lover of smoothies.)


I am also a lover of Oreos. (Those are colored pencils in the base of a lamp, by the way.)


I am a collector of papers, ones that I will soon sort and organize and toss away.


However, I am also an admirer of the smaller joys, and of the quirks this home has to offer. One of my favorites is the warped glass of my closet window.


Goodbye, sweet apartment.




7 comments:

  1. Wonderfully composed photos and beautiful writing, as always. Cool gifs too! I, too, prefer "the old, the used, the forgotten, the well-loved, the misshapen". I have found that many of your thoughts and opinions resonate closely with my own, although you express them much more eloquently than I would/could. Your blog posts are always a joy to read!

    -Megan Mahlberg

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  2. I love these photos; the place where you lived was so nice *-* really nice! I like the style, the old house and your bedroom was beautiful ^.^ You perfectly shared your feeling with us through your photos and words. Thank you :)

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  3. That is a beautiful apartment! I'd love to live there. I love the stained glass! That sink is not that messy. Mine would put that to shame.

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  4. What a quaint little place! I'm glad you shared those photos. Good luck with the move.

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  5. I love old Victorian homes and would love to live in one, one day! Your little apartment looks so cozy, even with all of the "problems". I love the pictures you took too. Feels like I was there with you!

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  6. Love the house, it is so charming. Really enjoyed your photos, showing details from your apartment, they are great. But old houses are build to a different standard than what they are nowadays, although I think they are much prettier. Best of luck in your new place.

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  7. what a lovely tribute! and i love that you compare the house to the weasleys' burrow, held together by magic. fabu.

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