Apartment Life


I’ve rented apartments.  I’ve lived in a basement apartment and a main floor apartment.  I lived in university residence for a year – probably the closest I’ve gotten to an apartment building.  I’ve shared a room with one girl… and with three girls.  Pre-dog.

When some friends went out of town for two weeks, they handed me the keys to their eleventh storey apartment and permission to bring the dog.  A perfect test of how Gwynn would do in my theoretical near-future move to an apartment or condo.

Some thoughts.

I am in bridge engineering.  My brain says the balcony is safe, in that it is lacking in signs that might indicate its imminent failure.  Gwynn and I agree that, regardless of its so-called safety, if one must go out on the balcony, the best place to be is plastered up against the building.  I love their view, but frankly, my future abode will need to be closer to the ground.

freaking amazing to watch a lightning storm from here, too… strangely, wasn’t bothered by the drop when standing out there in blustering winds with electricity and rain falling from the sky.

At home, Gwynn isn’t concerned about noises outside his  lign of sight.  At the apartment, between the hours of 10pm and 7am… he was on high-alert.  Any suggestions to get Gwynn to stop barking at every twinge of noise from outside the apartment would be appreciated.

Their apartment was heated through in-floor heating.  I can imagine it would be wonderful when it’s quite chilly out.  Despite being shut off, though, it was warm.  Melt-chocolate-warm.  I kept all the windows open (contributing to dog-barkiness, unfortunately), and a fan going at all times that I was in the apartment, just to keep the temperature tolerable.

Having to get into an elevator, go down 11 storeys and out of a building every time he has to go to the washroom SUCKS.  I had him outside every 1-2 hours until 10pm, just to be on the safe side.  He took advantage – giving me that ‘I gotta go SO BADLY’ look from the apartment door far more regularly than he actually… had-ta go.  This is not my favourite thing.  I really REALLY like having the option of just letting Gwynn go out in the back yard for a quick pee or sniff whenever he feels so inclined.

I’m not sure if it was just this particular building, but in two weeks, we met a broad assortment of dogs – one of which was friendly.  One.   The others were stressed-freaking-out-barking-lunging-hackles-up any time we ran into them.  What is up with that?

Having seen a wide variety of dog in the building – from tiny purse-type through to bigger-than-Gwynn – the elevator conversations I had were baffling.  I had this conversation at least 10 times over the course of 2 weeks:

Random Elevator Rider: “That’s a big dog.”

Lexy (it would be rude to disagree, I guess?): “… yup.”

RER: “Is it going to get bigger?”

Lexy (visualizing Gwynn as an orange newfie.) : “Probably not?”

no… THAT’s a big dog.

Washing dishes by hand:  better in a building (with a sink and taps) than at a campground.  Still not very fun.

Apartment laundry facilities – empty… at least at 8am on Thanksgiving Monday.

Cooking for myself:  I still really enjoy cooking. Nice to know.  Living at home, my family apparently believes that I have zero ability in the kitchen.  Away from home, I can try whatever recipe strikes my fancy… or have peanut butter and toast.

Overall, I think Gwynn and I are destined to rent/buy a main-floor unit, or closer to the ground, anyways.  Considering that housing-prices in the GTA (and, more importantly, within an hour or so of drive to my office) are bizarre and terrible right now, a condo or apartment is really my only hope of leaving home in the near future.  It’s nice to know that Gwynn and I can live in an apartment without too huge an adjustment process.

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5 Comments

  1. What is up with housing prices in your area? They have been high for forever. I wonder how people afford to buy a house.

    I would not say that Gwynn looks particularly big. Maybe compared to a purse pet. lol I agree with you that having to take the elevator down and walk the dog every time for potty is a pain. When ever we are staying in a hotel, they always seem to put us on the 2nd or even 3rd floor. Bah humbug.

    No advice for things that go bump in the night other than to work on the “quiet” command. We always have the barking dog experience when staying in a strange place. It usually gets better as they are there longer, but even at the cabin they are restless the first night. We say “quiet” a lot. 🙂

    • the housing prices have been ridiculous. It’s just a weird market bubble thing, and I’m really REALLY hoping it’ll burst sooner rather than later!
      they always seem to put us on the second floor too, which is frustrating especially when their mainfloor rooms have a door to the outside direct from the room.
      How do you initiate the quiet command? reward when they’re not making any noise?

  2. High-rise living has its perks and downsides. In Singapore, where land is scarce, the most common type of accommodation is a ‘pigeon-hole’ in the sky (imagine 40-50 floors above ground – scary)! Fortunately, we’re in a unit on a low floor so we don’t have to spend much time in the elevator. On that note, maybe it’s the sound of the elevator shaft moving up and down at night as people go in and out of their apartments that’s keeping Gwynn alert. Our Lil’ Miss Maple heads straight for the front door each time she hears the ‘ding’, which is the bell-like sound our elevator makes when it stops at a floor.

    • i can’t even imagine living 50 floors up! I’m guessing there woudln’t be a balcony that high?
      it’s definitely the elevator shaft, and the people going in and out of the next door apartment. He barks when someoen comes up to our door at the house, so I guess ni the apartment, every noise sounds like it’s someone ‘just outside the door’, vs at home, people on the sidewalk aren’t alarming. Miss Maple is just keeping track of your neighbours – gotta protect the family!

  3. I’ve found the same issues when staying in a hotel, they always put us in a room that requires the elevator. I don’t get it. I imagine those dogs in the apts that you run into in the elevator are pretty stressed to begin with, poor things.

    I do hope the bubble breaks for you soon and you can find a place, preferably on the lower levels.

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