One of my favorite Friends episodes is “The One with the Embryos” — the episode where Monica and Rachel place a bet with Chandler and Joey about who knows who better … and the girls end up losing their apartment to the boys. The gameshow part of the episode where Ross creates a trivia game for the two parties is my favorite bit, but I also love when Chandler and Joey ride their dog statue into Monica and Rachel’s apartment and Chandler triumphantly proclaims, “It’s moving day!”
Whenever I move — even when we were moving offices at work a few years ago — I always think of that episode. “It moving day!” rings through my head. The same holds true today.
“What? Moving?” you say. “But didn’t you just move a few weeks ago?” The answer is yes on both accounts. Yes, I just moved a few weeks — er, a month — ago, and yes, today is indeed another moving day for me. And let me just say: it feels good.
Why the move?
About a week into living in my one-bedroom apartment in Palermo Soho, I decided the expense and lack of natural light / warmth weren’t cutting it for me. Most people told me I was paying too much, and the expense was actually more than I’d bargained for due to a miscommunication between me and my landlord. Turns out, I needed to pay an additional 8% since I was paying through PayPal. That wasn’t clear to me when I moved in.
I was already stretching my limit, my landlord knew that and I felt blindsided by the additional 8%. I freaked out a little after that conversation. Luckily, I’d committed to month-to-month rent and hadn’t signed a contract yet. So I slept on it, told my landlord that weekend I’d only be staying a month and started looking for other apartments.
It honestly just felt like the better move. In hindsight, it was.
How did I find my new place?
Roughly two weeks into looking, I saw a post in a Facebook group I’m in from a young woman named Ida about a room in an apartment in Almagro, a nearby neighborhood. I messaged Ida to get some more details. It sounded like a good living situation with two nice people, so I went and looked at the apartment later that week.
The apartment was nice. It was on the seventh of eight floors, so it gets great natural light and a wonderful breeze. The roommates, Ida from Norway and Maxi from Patagonia, seemed really great — and Ida surfs! The apartment has a terrace that overlooks the street, there’s a park nearby and there’s access to the roof, which has nice views of the surrounding neighborhood.
The only thing I wasn’t sold on was the bedroom. Since I’m working from home, having a good work station is important to me. But after thinking it through overnight, I decided I could do a few small, inexpensive things to make the room my own and texted Ida to let her know I wanted to move in.
Even with my hesitations, it felt like the right move.
It’s moving day!
Now here I am, a few weeks later. I moved out of my one-bedroom apartment in Palermo Soho earlier today, and I’m now settling into — well, I’m actually pretty much settled into — my new home. It feels good. It feels like the right fit all around, like slipping on a really good, really comfortable pair of shoes.
My roommates are great. Ida’s back home in Norway for the holidays, so her friend Christian from Denmark is staying here for a few weeks. When I first got here, Christian and Maxi spent some time talking with me and showing me different things I might need to know in and around the apartment. They’ve been warm and welcoming. And my hope is that as I continue with my Spanish classes, I’ll be challenged to speak Spanish at home, too. They speak great English, but if I ask, they’ll definitely flip the switch and speak Spanish with me.
I’m sitting in my room at my desk right now. The room isn’t even as “bad” as I remember it being. I’ve put all my clothes away, made my bed and am enjoying the breeze from the open window and my ceiling fan. I haven’t had a ceiling fan in years, so this feels like a treat! Sunlight is spilling into my room, and the sounds of a Sunday afternoon in Almagro outside my window are soothing — cars, birds and the occasional cheers and cries as the two rival soccer teams in Buenos Aires, Boca Juniors and River Plate, are playing right now.
I feel as though I’m part of this community now as opposed to being closed off from it. It is so refreshing.
Today, I feel at peace. I feel at home. It’s a good change. It’s moving day, and while I didn’t come floating through the door on a dog statue — can you imagine? — my spirits are somewhat like Chandler and Joey today.
December 11, 2016