It’s morning, 6:30 am, as the sun rises and slowly shines through the window in my room, I wake up and rub my eyes so as to say goodbye to the sleep which is still there in my eyes. I thank God for giving me a good night’s sleep and also giving me this new day. I walk towards the bathroom to do all the morning stuff: washing my face, brushing the teeth, and so on.
Since the day I started living in this apartment it has become my habit that after waking up I go outside on the front balcony to take some fresh air, do some neck exercises, and stand there for some time. Winter, summer, autumn, or spring, the morning routine of mine remains the same. The time does differ though.
I can hear the birds chirping and pigeons flying here and there. I can see ‘Jeevan’ wiping and washing all the cars of the people living in this society. This too happens on a daily basis. All this gives me happiness, a little bit at the very least. But today, it’s a different feeling for me altogether. Something has changed. And this in fact started changing a long time back but I have been keeping this feeling aside.
As I look towards the other apartments, in front of my own, and on the sides, I start to get anxious. Why? You may ask. I will tell you all. I have been living in this rented apartment for over 3 years now. Initially, when I moved here, I thought (due to the circumstances) that it will be a short stay of about 6 months to 1 year maximum, but it turned out to be a long stay, which still continues.
It is not that I do not like it here, it does have some advantages like 24/7 power and water supply. No traffic inside the society as nobody except the residents of the society can use the roads. It is all quite obvious. But now, I do not get any happiness here at all. I am living here just because I have to live somewhere. In Hindi, we call it ‘majboori’ (compulsion/helplessness).
Looking at all these apartment buildings I find it very uncomfortable now. I have always found it very uncomfortable, to be frank. But I adjusted for the longest time due to the various circumstances in life. These tall buildings all over the city drive me nuts. I do not understand how and why people live in these high-rise buildings. My building is only 3 storeys tall and that is why I chose to live here.
I have never been a very social person. Call it my anxiety or whatever you might want to say, but I am not a very outgoing person. It is not that I don’t like to talk to people, but it is that I do not go ahead in gatherings, etc to interact with new people. I do see people talk to each other every evening, but I have not gone ahead and spoken to many of them. I could have. But I did not. Why? Well, as I told you that when I came here, I thought that it is only going to be a couple of months and after that, I will move from here to my own house. But that… hasn’t happened as yet.
I won’t bore you with this matter anymore as to why I came here and why I still live here. When the time will come I will certainly move from this place.
Now since I am living here for over 3 years now I can tell you what I liked and disliked living in an apartment. I will sum it all in a list below. Please note that these points are just my personal views. It may be good for some and not for others. So here are the pros and cons of living in an apartment, according to me.
Pros of living in an apartment
- Security – The main pro of living in a gated society is without any doubt, security. You have dedicated staff for this purpose. Proper guards are kept on the gates, CCTV cameras are installed to keep a watch on any activity on the roads and buildings, etc. This helps a lot in creating a worry-free environment.
- Water & Electricity Supply – Most societies have 24-hour water and electricity supply. In my case, as I live in India, we have power cuts and also we don’t have the water supply all day and night. But in society buildings, we have it 24×7. That’s a plus for sure.
- Clean Roads and Area – Roads are well maintained in a society. Also, proper care is taken for any park, clubhouse, etc that might be there in the society.
- Maids – Again one of the major positives of living in a society is the easy availability of maids. In India, at least, it’s very difficult to get a maid if you are living a bigger city. In a society, you get many maids readily available as so many live here and mostly everyone has hired a maid in their apartments.
- Reachability – It is much easier to tell someone about your address. You just have to tell the name of the society and the apartment/flat number. And that’s all. They can simply use Google Maps to locate you.
- Car Parking – Every apartment owner gets his own dedicated parking area.
- Park and other services – Many, not all, societies have their own park, clubhouse, recreation area for the residents.
These are the pros of living in an apartment in a good society. I can only think of these. I have to pick just 3 out of these 7, then I will pick point number 1, 2, and 4. For me, these 3 things are most important. I can live without the other pros.
Cons of living in an apartment
- Limited Space – In every apartment, you get a limited space. It is actually lesser than what you paid for. Yes, that is correct. It is like you paid for a full 12-inch pizza but instead got a 10-inch pizza at the same cost. Why is that so? Some space is kept for the hallway, stairs, and lifts, which are generally all covered in your area. Apartments have different covered and actual areas.
- Neighbors – Especially the ones who live above your apartment. In the past 3 years, 3 different families have lived above my flat. And each one has been extremely noisy. They use their floor as if it is a playground. Dragging furniture, running around, all day and night. Sometimes I literally curse myself for living here. Just now somebody banged his/her apartment door. Before you made a decision of living in an apartment, think about this particular point for sure.
- No or Limited Outdoor Space – If you are living on the ground floor then you might have some outdoor space, but anything above the ground floor generally doesn’t have any such space. Even if you do, it is quite limited. You will have to adjust accordingly. I have been living in my own house for years and we had quite a big space. As I was always used to living in such a place, I find it very difficult to live in an apartment. Though I am living here for 3 years now, still I have not become used to it. My mind rejects this.
- Restrictions – You are restricted in doing so many things. For example, you can’t construct anything (if it’s your own apartment). If you are living as a tenant, then the landlord (mostly) won’t allow you to paint walls or do any styling as a whole. You may do some DIY projects here and there but for that too you will have to take permission from your landlord. Well, whether you live in a rented apartment or a house, the restrictions for such kind will be at both places. If you are the owner of the apartment then also you won’t be able to extend your house in any way. Also, the roof isn’t yours. So… bad luck here too.
Why I don’t like living here?
Now let me tell you I don’t like to live in an apartment. All 4 points listed above are 100% correct in my case. Other than that, I feel depressed living in this confined space. It gives me anxiety and a sense of loneliness living here. There is nothing wrong with the apartment building, society, or the location. It is just me. From childhood to date I have always lived in a free and open space. Bigger house with garden and so much space to walk and do simple activities like sitting outside in the sun during winters, or keeping a dog, or do some gardening, etc.
But now… all these things have stopped. Even after living here for more than 3 years, I still don’t know how people live peacefully in such a small house. To me, it feels like a luxury jail. I am sorry if this offends you, but these are my personal views. I am facing anxiety on a daily basis now and mostly it is because of my living here. No matter how much I try, I do not get any happiness living here. The moment I get the chance to ‘get out’ of here I will do that immediately without giving a second thought.
To me, personally, living in an apartment is a sad experience. And I want to get rid of this feeling as soon as possible.
I can see so many advantages to living in a society apartment, but none is big enough to give me any peace of mind. I know that if I get a house then most of the advantages of an apartment, I won’t be getting there. But it is okay. I will manage.
Now that I have told you everything, I want to tell you what I actually want for myself.
I want to buy land, away from the city, still close. A small house or a cottage is just fine with me. I will plant some trees, have a small garden, vegetables, flowers, herbs… etc. It is just a dream as of today, but one dream which I will fulfill for sure. I don’t intend to visit the whole world, but I want to create my own happy little world for myself.
When will this dream of mine come true? I don’t know. What am I doing to make this dream come true? Nothing at the moment. The time and the situation I am in aren’t favourable for it. But… I will do that for sure and nobody, I repeat nobody can stop me from doing so.
Sitting in the balcony of my apartment… I had this dream, a dream that will not remain a dream forever. The only thing I enjoyed living in this apartment is that it is only cementing my dream… one brick at a time.
Note: I know that the things I have written above may not be relevant in your case. You might be enjoying every moment of living in your apartment. I respect your feelings and choices. As I have mentioned earlier too, these are my own personal views about living in an apartment.
What are your views about this? Do let me know in the comments below.