bye bye, nottingham place

The sheer madness of the past few weeks of our lives has meant I have no time to get weepy or sentimental about our flat. But it doesn’t mean I don’t have random moments of remembrance and gratitude.

Bryan and I ordered in last night and took a few minutes to survey the past 3 1/2 years in our flat. I always have a hard time in these situations because I definitely attach meaning and importance to inanimate things. This flat has been no exception.

We moved to London 3 1/2 years ago, fresh off a plane, not knowing what to expect. Spring was coming and life seemed filled with possibility. We were newlyweds even- imagine that! Within one month of arriving, an estate agent brought us into this flat: two short flights up, above a dentist, on a little street with a dynamite location and lots of boutique hotels and small embassies. One block from the best High Street in London. We were wary of seeing flats but we walked in the door and the ridiculously high ceilings and floor to ceiling windows were flooding the whole place with sunlight. We said, yes please. It didn’t hurt that it was the exact layout of our previous Brooklyn apartment. Something about the familiarity made it that much better.

Talking last night, we reminisced about the sheer volume of people who have visited us here in London, in this very flat. Almost every family member multiple times and more great friends than we could have ever imagined. We feel so lucky to have such a fantastic support system and super fun people who would come all this way. They all stayed in the second bedroom and all endured our funny shower and funny toilet flush and funny moving chair on the stairs for the dentist office and I think they all had a really good time in one of the best cities in the world. Hopefully.

We also recalled what we felt like in 2008. Traveling around Europe pre-children. Starting news jobs. Figuring out this foreign culture.

It’s hard for me to believe now that once upon a time, our flat looked like this (circa 2008):

More recently it has felt too small. Toys everywhere. The accumulation of stuff. A family of two that started and then is on the cusp of being four. We’ve been under construction siege and mouse siege and fly siege and landlord siege. It was time to move on. No time like the present. Due date notwithstanding.

And so we move to a place nearby and we are excited. But I know we will miss:

  • hardwood floors
  • these crazy tall windows
  • built-in bookshelves
  • french doors out to a terrace
  • the wall I convinced two friends to paint a perfect shade of brown/gray
  • the sounds from the street so that it’s impossible to feel alone
  • the proximity to the tube
  • being able to peer over the balcony and see who is arriving on the doorstep
  • the memories of people being here and the fun times to be had
  • knowing the venue origins of both my babies (TMI, I know)
  • the nursery I made to bring our first baby home to
  • living in Flat 1
Most of all I will miss, after 7 years of living this way, having one communal space. Yes, it’s small and not sustainable forever. But it’s been my reality. Every day and night of my life when home for the past 3 1/2 years, my family has been altogether. We didn’t really have any other room to be in. Every meal I have cooked, every fantasy sports score Bryan has checked, every big imagination Jonah has engaged in with his toys – we did it all in the same room. Together. I will remember this as one of the sweetest times in my life.
Bye, mice. Don’t follow me.


Filed under flat, the mouse who is torturing me

10 responses to “bye bye, nottingham place

  1. It’s funny…this is exactly what I loved about our Brooklyn apartment as well. The closeness. And why I love our little house so much – we are all still basically in the same small space experiencing life together. I love it.

  2. I do the exact same thing – I always reminisce about a place when we’re getting ready to move. And when we do move from our current apartment, I’m sure I’ll do the same exact thing, except WAY more, since Andrew came into our lives in that apartment.

    • yael

      That does make it more bittersweet to leave. But movin’ on up is great too! Speaking of… I saw that pic on FB of the crack den. You’ve come a long way, baby.

  3. toshalot

    beautifully written 😉

  4. AutieFig

    Happy Move! Good luck with the unpacking 😦 New home, new memories and a new little one soon!

  5. Good luck in the new place. I totally understand the nostalgia of all the fun you’ve had there.

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