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    As soon as I heard that there was a super-duper senior residence being built across the street, from where I now live, I was one of the first future residents to sign up for an apartment in June of 2017.  Everyday since, I have been watching this, one-hundred-and-ten-million-dollar, (glad this is a story and not a check) structure being built, with over 250 workers on site, finally, there seems to be a move-in date somewhere in the offing—depending on government inspections.

    In the ensuing two years, rumors have been flying from prospective resident to prospective resident about the move-in date. First it was expected in January, then March, April (for sure!) May, June, July (really for sure). Now maybe September..(for maybe sure). I feel as if I’m back in high school, waiting to be asked to the prom, when people say, “Do you have a date yet?” Dejected, I hang my head and whisper,”Not yet, but I am hopeful.”

    With five restaurants, some prospective residents are worried that, “So many people will come here to eat from the outside that there won’t be room for people who live here.” Not true!  It’s just another false rumor. The only outsiders  who can eat in the restaurants will be guests of the residents. Of course, that means that we have to be extremely careful of outsiders who suddenly want to be our best friends at dinner time.

    I understand that the apartments are so well built that you can shout obscenities in your apartment, and the people in the adjoining apartment can’t hear you. I really like that, because I often yell  obscenities at my television set.

    When my husband was a graduate student, we moved into married student housing. The first night, in our apartment, my husband said, “Come look at the beautiful moon.”  Then he said, “Oh, My God!  There are two of them.  Hit the floor!”  It was then that we discovered that the married student apartments were in the landing pattern of the airport.  Also, we were treated to the university marching band practicing under our window early every morning. I didn’t care.  It was our home—until we moved.  

    During the first night in our next apartment, I gave my husband a poke and said, “You are snoring.”  He replied, “It isn’t me. I thought it was you.” Turns out it was the man next door. I never did find out if there was a wall under that wall paper.

    Our next apartment had a clogger overhead.  Every night, after work, she’d move the  furniture across the floor, turn up the music and stomp to her heart’s content. Then we moved to an apartment owned by the mafia. No noise! No problems! No cutting of the grass.  One afternoon, our neighbor lost her toddler in the un-cut lawn and we all had to look for her.

    Our dear friends, Janet and George moved to an apartment that had been a dental office.  Their kitchen looked a bit like a dental lab. One day, they came home from class and found a man sitting in their living room reading a portion of Janet’s thesis. He said, “Is the dentist in?”
    Janet said, “This is no longer a dental office. Couldn’t you tell the difference?” As he left he said, “I think you could have provided better reading material.”

    Then there was the bizarre: Gail and Joe moved into a place where all the doorknobs were covered with little crochet caps.  The first night in their bedroom, they discovered that the Chinese themed wallpaper glowed in the dark.  All night they had visions of little Chinese men dancing across the walls.

    And finally,  Lawrence and Carolyn got a really good deal when they purchased a mansion. His law firm had handled the sensational  case of the owner’s bloody  murder while he had taken a vacation somewhere in the Caribbean. Turns out that he had been quite an oddball with very strange friends, and the publicity about his life killed any chance of selling that house. Eventually, Lawrence and Carolyn transformed that house into a beautiful home where they raised their children.

    It’s been a long time since I have lived in an apartment. Right now, it’s just a place. A place does not make a home. People make a home.  I can do that—-if they ever let me move in.

    Esther Blumenfeld

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