October 7, 2011

Where it really all began?

I really wanted to do a series of posts on the places I've lived before this house, and my favorite of all is my first apartment. 

I really, really recommend to every 'young' person to live alone, or least out of your parent's house before you go and become a 'grownup'. Some people don't like to be alone or are scared of living along, but I was definitely not one of those people. I used to daydream about the day I could actually move out of my parent's house and, I quote, ‘do whatever I want’. For a little while I got a taste of Independence while living in the dorms at F.I.T., but nothing compares to your own apartment. I swear, I could have been living in a condemned crackhouse and that year in Newburgh would still have been the best year of my life (well, my younger life). The magic was in the air - I could barely pay my rent, I had no TV and I worked two jobs and every weekend, but I also had some parties, my friends slept over all the time and when I got drunk on the waterfront (sorry mom), I could practically walk home! Along with all those things, I fell in love with that city. The forgotten grandeur, the history and all those amazing homes…

My apartment was on the third floor of this building:

Not the oldest or most historic by Newburgh standards (or it's neighbors - check out the pink house)...

but it was built in 1900 and certainly had enough ‘old house charm’ to woo me. Plus, it had the most beautiful tree outside:

First, let's talk about the bathroom. I loved it. The windows were HUGE and they let in so much light...although taking a shower without flashing my neighbor was a constant battle. There were awesome slate tiles and this antique claw-foot tub. Funny story with that: since water was included in my rent, the landlord removed the plug from the bathtub so that no one could fill it up (thereby wasting water?). Anyway, one of my best friends and I formulated a plan and plug the drain with a cork lid that we found in my apartment! Devon got to take her bath, but by the time I wanted to take one, the cork had completed disintegrated from being in the water. It was pretty hilarious. 

This I-don't-know-what-to-call-it is from my other best friend, Dawn's, garage. It was painted a dark forest green and I gave it a few coats of white and it worked perfectly in the small bathroom. I suppose you could say that this was my first foray into stealing repurposing people's old furniture.

The apartment really didn't have a 'bedroom' - it had this main room when you first walked in, then a second room off this one, which then led to the kitchen. What do you call those - railroad apartments? Pretty much, you had to go through my bedroom to get to the kitchen.

Here is the main room when I first moved in. That's Devon's gi-normous bean bag - and yes, many a person has slept on it (probably not sober) and yes, getting it up three flights of stairs was NOT pretty!

This is the 'bedroom' when I first got there...

and then the bedroom after I put all my crap in it.

The kitchen:

In those days I wasn't really much of a cook, except of course when everyone would come over for Taco Tuesday's! Then it would look like a bomb went off:

Then there were the little things....

My 'view' of the Hudson, which you could only really see if you actually crawled out of the window and onto the fire escape, which I actually did numerous times.

If you want to read or learn more about Newburgh, here are a few places to do it:

I still dream that one day I'll have enough money to buy one of those forgotten Newburgh beauties and restore it with Brian. Of course by the time I find that money and time, Newburgh will have already 'turned around'!

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