Losing my view

Vankleek Hill flower

I’m moving in with my girlfriend in a few weeks. It will be my 53rd address.

It’s a big step for a lot of reasons, the biggest one is that I’ve never lived with a partner before. Also, I haven’t had a roommate of any kind in almost ten years.

I’ve been in this apartment for eight years, which is the longest, by far, I’ve ever lived anywhere. It’s a nice size, the rent’s cheap, it’s isolated…

But I can take a fork — just an average, slightly bent dinner fork — and pass it through the space between the wall of my apartment, and the window frame. So, if this “ll” is the way the window and wall are supposed to meet, mine does this: l)… I can see outside in the space between.

If you were to walk around my building you would find two holes in the exterior wall — one the size of a cantaloupe, the other about the size of a box of cantaloupes — through which the insulation between the outer wall and my interior wall, has fallen. If you were thirty feel tall, you could walk up, reach through and tap on my interior wall.

It’s a slum. I live in a train wreck. Danny Boyle could make a movie about my apartment. The building had no roof for a decade, and the one the slumlandlord put on, leaks every spring.

However, despite all of the negatives (and there are many, many more), this has been my favourite address so far.

Why? Mostly because of the view.

Yes, heating this place probably cost three times more than if I were living somewhere twice as big with three fewer walls, but it was mostly worth it, because of that view — it’s easily the best one in town, which makes it the best one in the Township.

From my balcony — which is large enough for a couch, a couple of chairs, a baby bed, a box of blocks and a bike — I can see the roofs of some buildings, a forest, the Laurentian Mountains in Quebec, trees and trees and trees, the sunset and a huge sky which, at night, is filled with stars.

But it’s going to happen… in a few weeks I’ll move in with my girlfriend, and I won’t miss it at all.

Vankleek Hill Photos copyright

2 thoughts on “Losing my view

    • I think I was at ten before I was nine… I’ve made a list (it’s long, can’t find it right now), even went back and started taking photos of the places I can reach easily. I moved into this place (#52) when I was 34, which means I was averaging roughly six months per address. The shortest was a week, I moved in, a few days later I saw a roach, I found another place and moved.

      Thanks for the comment, Evelyn.


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