Friday, August 19, 2011

Loving Apartment Living

Growing up Australia, I always thought that having a house and backyard was the only way to go. Our first house we bought had a small front yard and an equally small backyard, but still, it had a yard.

These last four and a bit weeks of living in hotel rooms and apartments has shown me a different side. We are settling here in Berlin and are loving our apartment. It think it is about 80 square meters which I thought would be quite pokey. Actually it is a great size. There are four rooms - main bedroom, lounge/kiddies room, bathroom/laundry and the kitchen/dining room. Each room is a decent size and the hallway is lined with cupboard space so there is a home for everything. We opted for a furnished apartment as we didn't want the stress of trying to furnish something for only a few months. Everything we could what is here. All we needed to do was walk in.

I was initially a little worried about the lack of back yard as the kids spend hours in their imaginary little world playing games at home, but on reflection there was no need to worry. As everyone is in the same situation, with no real yard at home, the parks are incredibly busy. It is such a pleasant change to see so many people out and about in the fabulous weather, spending time at the many wonderfully equipped parks. My kiddies are thrilled every time we get near a park as they are pretty much guarenteed it will be spacious and exciting. Parks are real community meeting places. On our wander through a park on the weekend we even saw people bringing their portable barbecues on the back of their bikes for a Saturday afternoon with friends. I am amazed with how many people use these spaces.

Picnicking and barbecuing by the canal

I had never been really keen on parks/playgrounds as quite often you could arrive only to find a swing and a slide, surrounded by dead lawn. We haven't come across any yet that hasn't seen the kids either squeal with delight upon arrival or moan in disappoinmemt when it was time to leave. I must quietly admit that we are pretty happy that one of the kids' favourite playgrounds happens to be attached to a biergarten. (We'd hate to disappoint the children by not going to their favourite playground.)

Playground in the foreground, biergarten in the background to the right. Perfect.

I must also admit that I am loving the smaller amount of housework there is to be done in an apartment. As we have very little of our own 'stuff', it is really easy to keep everything in order. Dishes can be done, clothes can be in the washer, the timber floors can be vacuumed and the apartment can be spotless just in time for us to head out on a new adventure.

There are people out everywhere during the sunshine hours. It is quite acceptable to sit on a park bench with a few mates and have a beer in your hand. Many head out to the canal in our neighbourhood and sit and socialise overlooking the water. What a wonderful way to spend time with friends, watching the world go by.

(Take care)

On a totally unrelated note, I received the latest newsletter from Jude Blereau at Wholefood Cooking about the upcoming seasonal seminar. If you are in Perth and haven't been to one before, I cannot recommend these enough. There are also some other upcoming events that may be of interest.


  1. I was telling Mr C last night about you guys living in Germany for 6 months, hint hint...yes, I think that would be a good idea for us too :-)
    It is hard the whole apartment vs house thing. I think Europeans do apartment living really well though, as sooo many other people live this way.

  2. CHFG, make sure to keep hinting. It has been wonderful so far and I'm sure it will only get better. (if you head over here in the next four and a half months, make sure to let me know!)
    It is great while we are so busy and only here for a limited time to have an apartment. I do miss my vege garden but also know I have fabulous window sill that I could be utilizing better.

  3. Berlin Is such a cool city. Most countries I think do apartment living, we are very lucky in oz to be able to aspire to and obtain our own green space. What are you in Berlin for? We keep googling 'englsh speak g jobs in France!'

  4. Mrs Bok, we are loving living here at the moment. Ask me again in the depths of winter.
    I must say I loved Paris too. The apartment was fabulous and so close to many of the wonderful things to see and do.
    Berlin is the work related stop on this little adventure.


Thanks so much for dropping by. I really appreciate any comments you have to make.

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