Specs: 1br in a 4br house. Small kitchenette area and bathroom.
NYC neighborhood: Woodhaven/Richmond Hill, Queens
Since I wasn’t really planning on moving when I was told I’d have to, I hadn’t really put much thought into what I was looking for. Two viewings into my apartment search, a need has become clear.
I NEED A LIVING ROOM.
It doesn’t have to be huge, and I don’t mind sharing it, but I need an area that is separate from the kitchen and/or bedrooms that has a couch and a TV in it. I need a place where, should I have guests come over, I can entertain.
Saw a place last night in the Woodhaven/Richmond Hill area of Queens, off the J train stop at 104th Street. (I’ve never taken the J in my whole life. Now, I’m taking it every other day) You come out onto the street at 104th and Jamaica Avenue, and it feels a bit sketchy. However, once you get off Jamaica and walk a block, you’re in a really nice residential neighborhood. The block I was going to looked a bit like my current block in Astoria, and the house I’d be looking at was gorgeous! It has a huge porch and everything! I was hopeful.
The house was just as nice on the inside, and I realized that the upstairs was very separate from the downstairs where I was being shown the room.
I didn’t realize I’d be looking at a 1930s-style boarding house.
The room for rent itself was nice and was the size of the room I have now. I felt bad, because the little Chinese landlady apparently didn’t tell the girl who currently has the room that I was coming to see it, and she had friends over! So I felt really awkward eying her room with her and her friends still in it!
There are 4 bedrooms total, the others of which are filled. There’s a shared bathroom that was really decent, and then there’s the kitchen/common area above. There are 4 sliding-door closets in the kitchen – one for each bedroom – where tenants can hang their clothes. Everything was really clean, and it felt really warm and homey. The thing about this place, though, is that it’s, as Robin put it, “a halfway house for people between college and adulthood.” It was like a cross between a dorm and a hostel. There was a kitchen cleaning schedule on the wall, and there are House Rules on the fridge. Things like: no boyfriends/girlfriends allowed to spend the night.
*record scratch* What?! Ease up, Mrs. Garrett! I may not be getting much action at the moment, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to move into a situation that will prevent it from happening ever again! Had I seen this place right out of college, it would’ve been perfect. 31-year-old Teresa, however, NEEDS A FUCKING LIVING ROOM. And also, she needs to be able to have whatever visitors she likes be able to enter her home. That should be, like, standard.
Then there was THIS awkward conversation:
Landlady: So, do you have a job? What do you do for your money?
Teresa: Well, I’m a freelance writer, and I write for several websites. I’m also an English teacher. Right now, I’m teaching at a learning center in Flushing, and at the end of August, I’ll be taking another job as a tutor in the English department of a community college.
Landlady: So…you don’t have a job?
Yeeeah, that’s not gonna be a good fit.
Lastly, I don’t think I could live comfortably in a neighborhood that is home to classy dining establishments like this one:
However, I’m hopeful today! I’ve come across several listings that are more along the lines of what I’m looking for, and I have another appointment tomorrow and one on Friday. I WILL find what I need. So, there.