Saturday 24 March 2012

Care to see the inside of a Roman apartment?

Being extremely curious, both by nature and by training, I always enjoy seeing the inside of people's homes. Just yesterday, I met my neighbour from across the courtyard, and weaseled my way inside her door at least far enough to see how she's decorated the place. (I also met her cute little dog, Lina.)

That inspired me to compare our apartments and write a bit about mine. You can see my galley-style kitchen (with the green Ikea cabinets) above.

Both of our apartments are long and narrow, a bit like a train with a string of a few rail cars. In my case, the front door opens into the kitchen with a long narrow bedroom to one side, and the main living area (with two front windows, no curtains) to the other.

I did say earlier that the bedspread in my apartment was green! It matches the kitchen cabinets.

The head of the bed helps to separate the bedroom-area from the kitchen, and looks towards the bathroom at the far end of the apartment. Guests using the bathroom will get a good look at how well I've made the bed!

My neighbour's apartment is, of course, decorated with far more style and comfort than is mine, given that my place is a furnished rental, not really decorated, and I don't have the euros right now to do any kind of decorating.

Except for a few things on the bare walls. I went to the delightful little paper store Il Papiro and bought two 4-euro pieces of beautifully decorated wrapping paper which I have stuck to the walls, just as if I were a student again. (I'm still looking for that "Hang in there, baby" poster!)

Here's the view out of one of the two front windows.

And, of course, the appliances are small. In fact, my landlady seems to have found extraordinarily tiny appliances, such as the microwave, which can barely hold one mug (so long as it's not a tall mug!)

The doll-sized dishwasher (and yes; I'm very grateful to have a dishwasher) has only one small, narrow rack.

And finally, my children's-sized washing machine. Too small to fit in even one bedsheet (so every Friday Felix is sent by my landlady to change the bedding. I've learned to swallow my shyness.)

I've propped a running shoe in front of the washing machine door to give a sense of its size.

But it's home, and I love it!


Eden said...

I was just thinking how life would be so much easier if I were to live with just what I really need instead of all my "dust-gatherer" here! And you have Rome outside your door! I's still majorly jealous! Thanks for showing us the green bedspread.

Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

A little doll house in the heart of Rome.

Ciao Girl said...

I'm always curious about peoples homes. Love walking around in the evening (wherever I am) and getting glimpses of interiors. Surely, not a peeping Tom...

Thanks for sharing ~ it's very cute!

Trekcapri said...

Hi Sandra, I love the decorative paper that you got to hang on your walls. Your apartment looks very cool with all the comforts of home. I enjoyed seeing all of your photos. Thanks so much for sharing your home in Rome.

Have a wonderful weekend.

sandrac said...

Hi Eden, I really am enjoying a very pared down life in terms of my home. I miss a few of my things: curiously, my own bedsheets (which are very soft.) And my books. But I don't miss any of those things all that much!

Hi Sandi, it really is perfect for my needs!

Heidi, you must let me know when you'll be in Rome and maybe we can meet for a coffee!

Thanks Kathy, wrapping paper on the wall might seem tacky for some but the designs are so perfect (and the price so right) that I'm enjoying my "decorations!" I hope that you have a great week ahead!

sandrac said...

Hello again Heidi, I received your 2 emails but your address wasn't included!

Susie L said...

Sandra, I love the spareness and I think I would enjoy living with just what I need and nothing more. Hmmm, I better go clean out a closet or something now...

I love the green kitchen cabinet too!

Michelle said...

Great, bright spot Sandra! Now I can picture you sitting there drinking your coffee and looking at the awesomeness of Rome below! So glad you've made this life work out for you but we miss you lots here!

Carol Rein said...

Thanks for sharing Sandra--it's like getting in a little visit with you at your home which is both quaint and funky/contempory. There, did I nail it or what? But your applicances! Oh my Lord, why bother!! Doll house size is right--they are cute though. I guess it still beats washing by hand, even if it`s only a VERY small load at a time. Your wonderful location, though, trumps it all. :)

menehune said...

I second what Sandi said. Who needs things - you are making memories...I love your apartment.

Liz said...

Hi Sandra, thanks for letting us peek through your doorway! I'm curious to know how you found your apartment, and how easy (or otherwise) you found the process of setting up a longer lease? Although I've taken some extended rental periods - my next Rome trip is three months - there's always the future plan in the back of my mind to stay longer!

I love that Lilliputian dryer by the way!

sandrac said...

Hi Susie, it is nice living more simply -- for now. It has only been four months; I might have a different attitude after the novelty has worn off!

Michelle, I miss you and all your babies so much, too. You really need to come for a visit, soon!

Carol, I love your description of my apartment! When you come and visit, you can see for yourself (and you'll at least be able to wash your undies and T-shirts in the tiny washer!)

Menehune, making memories is a wonderful description!

Liz, finding a longer-term apartment was actually quite simple. Easier than I expected! Once I was here and met a few people, I began to get contacts and ideas for places to live. Nothing beats personal recommendations.

I think when you're ready for a longer term stay, and you begin to put the word out you'll get some suggestions. Or start with a short-term holiday rental, and then you can look at longer-term apartments in person.

BTW, I LOVE the Lilliputian reference; that is exactly how I think of my appliances!

Jane said...

Sandra, somehow I missed this wonderful post. I totally loved "seeing" your home in Rome.Here I had thought our appliances in the apt. in Greve were small but they were gigantic compared to the doll house. Where is it that you do your work? The room you didn't show?

sandrac said...

Hi Jane, I work on the table in the main living/dining area where I have a table, four plastic chairs, two front windows, and little else! (oh, and two pieces of wrapping paper for a decorative touch.) Still, I should take a photo of room itself; maybe that will be an upcoming blog post!

Linda @ Ice Tea for Me said...

Hi Sandra - You moved!! I'm so happy for you that you found a new home and it wasn't as difficult as you expected. How exciting. What part of town are you in now? Thanks for sharing your new Apt. with us, very cute.

I too like to see how other people live/decorate their homes so I challange myself when in Italy to see if I can get invited to their homes. It's only happened a couple of times, always fun.

Wow, it's been 4 months since you've moved to Italy, wow.


sandrac said...

Hi Linda, it's great to hear from you! I'm still in the same neighbourhood, maybe a 10-minute walk from the previous apartment. Perhaps you'll see it the next time you're in Rome!

Annie said...

I think it's charming and I love the green cabinets. LOL at "Hang in there baby" poster - I remember those!

sandrac said...

Thanks, Annie! It would be kind of fun to see those posters again -- very retro!

Jerry said...

Your apartment looks like the perfect spot for you to hang out while enjoying Rome. I am always struck with how little 'stuff' Italians must have in order to live in such a tiny spot!

sandrac said...

Yes, Jerry, living in a small space forces you to decide what you really need. Of course, I say that with a huge storage container filled with stuff back in Ottawa!