Oh, The Places I Have Lived
Anyways, it's a compilation of all the places I've lived - and all the little tidbits that made them unique - since I moved out of my parents' house at 18. This brought back so many memories...
Rental #1 - North Bay, Ontario - 6 bedroom townhouse on campus at my college
Lived with 5 other girls. It was a sweet house. I had the bedroom in the middle upstairs, across from the loft, and one door down from the bathroom with the shower. Liked all my roommates but Melissa. She was schizophrenic, stole everyone's food, and made stuff up. Our house was located directly across from a house full of cute University guys, about 120 feet from the college doors, and 60 feet in the other direction from the laundry building. Smoked and drank a lot in that house. Danced a lot in that house. Met some amazing people in that house.
My second year I lived in the same house, with an entirely new group of girls. Had even more fun that year. Drank and smoked and danced a lot more that year too.
Rental #2 - Calgary, Alberta - 1 bedroom bachelor pad on Falshire Drive
This is when Chris and I moved in together. It was a basement apartment. When I moved in there was a mattress on the floor, an old lamp on a box beside the mattress, a Green Day poster on the wall in the living room, a loveseat and chair that we actually just got rid of earlier this year, an old school tv with wood panelling on the sides, about 4 plates, 3 pots, a handful of mismatched utensils, and some towels.
I discovered Ikea about 5 minutes after I moved in, and within a month or so we had a proper tv, a table and chairs, an area rug, a fully-applianced kitchen, stuff on the walls, and the disgusting smell of electrician-working-in-a-sulfur-plant (fyi - that was Chris, he used to be an electrician) had been banished to the hall closet.
Since it wasn't the best area in town, we had some questionable neighbours. One pair of women in particular - two 30-year-old little people who hung out by the dumpsters smoking crack with a bunch of 14-year-old kids.
Rental #3 - Calgary, Alberta - 2 bedroom apartment in Falconridge
This is when I actually told my parents I was moving in with Chris. They took it better than I expected considering we weren't married yet. This place cost a bloody fortune, and half the time it was like I was living alone anyways, because Chris would go away to work for a month at a time, then be home for 5 days and gone again.
The day we went to see the show suite, I asked the landlord if the one we would be renting faced east or west, because I wanted to be sure to get either morning or afternoon sunlight. She actually asked me if that was because I was planning on growing pot in the second bedroom. I still don't think she actually believed me when I said that I was just growing house plants.
This is the first place I felt like a grown up. Maybe because I planned our entire wedding from that place, I'm not sure. I loved this apartment.
The only bad part? We moved in after a family of about 10 moved out, and they didn't clean before they left. The end result was that the entire place smelled like curry. We must have gone through 3 bottles of bleach trying to get the smell out. I distinctly remember standing on the kitchen counters with a sponge soaked in diluted bleach wiping the curry off the ceiling!
Rental #4 - Winnipeg, Manitoba - 2 bedroom apartment in St. James
We sublet this place from a little old lady who was moving back home after her husband passed away in the hospital. I remember when we did the walk through with her, and she took us into the second bedroom and told me she had fixed it up for when her granddaughters came to stay with her. It was full of dolls - all scary looking - I'll never forget the one sitting in a highchair in the corner. It had a porcelain face and staring glass eyes, and its face was all cracked. Eeek.
This apartment was huge! I painted it all sorts of bright, wild colours and I loved everything about it. We were on the 7th floor and it was very quiet, except for the fact that we were overlooking the 8 lane traffic of Portage Avenue.
I still remember the time Chris was too lazy to take the garbage out to the dumpster, and instead left it in the underground parkade. When we came home later, that bag of garbage was sitting ripped open inside our apartment - our landlords had gone through it, found some mail addressed to us, and brought the bag to us to dispose of properly.
I didn't want to leave that place, but when Chris got into nursing school we couldn't afford the rent anymore...which leads us to the hell that was Rental #5...
Rental #5 - Winnipeg, Manitoba - 1 bedroom clusterf*ck in Wolseley
By far the worst place we have ever lived. It was the best neighbourhood you could ask for, though in the dumpiest house on the face of the earth - but our rent was $450 a month, and when one spouse is in school and the other is working for minimum wage, it'll do.
This is the place I talked about before, where we had Crazy Eyes for a neighbour? The one that was obsessed with us having sex? Yeah, it was great.
One house, 4 apartments. Let me break it down for you. We were in the biggest apartment. Crazy Eyes and Vi were in the one-room hole downstairs. Fernando was a night-shift worker below us that was constantly complaining that we made too much noise. Hello? We're gone all day and when we're home in the evening we have to walk around at some point! Tammy was the hooker that lived in the apartment above us. And I'm serious about her being a hooker - she would literally have two and three men a night come in, do her, and leave.
One of the most memorable things about this place is when we moved in, we had to get our queen size bed up a very narrow and winding staircase, and there was no way in hell it was going to fit. So what did my dear daddy do? He took the hacksaw out of my toolbox and cut the banister off. And I stood by cheering and clapping. We got in trouble for that, but the place was a dump anyways, so I don't feel bad.
Rental #6 - Winnipeg, Manitoba - 2 bedroom townhouse in St. James
This is the place we still live - we'll be here till we buy a house, that was the decision. We finally have our own washer and dryer, our own doorway, a fireplace, a dishwasher, a garburator (and I have NO idea how to spell that properly, people), a pool - this place is actually pretty fantastic. Except that we pay an un-Godly amount of rent, plus utilities. We could have a sweet house for what we pay each month...too bad we're trying to get out of the foolish debt we got ourselves into when we were starting out.
Anyways, this place has been home for about 4 years, and it's comfy. I have no problem being here till we find the house that's right for us.
So while I was going through all these rentals, I started wondering about how much we've paid in rent over the years. I like to torture myself, what can I say?
So starting from the bachelor pad in Calgary (my parents paid my rent at college), I have come to a conservative figure of about $78, 000.
Can you believe that?!?!?! And I was actually under-estimating a little!
I think it's almost time we got ourselves a mortgage...