Saturday, 25 October 2008

“My name is Luka/ I live on the second floor”

It is not like I found it, sometimes it seems to me that it was my house to find me instead.
My parents were visiting me and they found this ad right the street after my flat.
In that time I was starting to look around for a new flat, seen that my three years contract were running to an end and I was about to have to choose if sign up for another three years or resign and search something else.
I loved my flat, mind me. It was little, cozy, center placed and cute as a button.
Besides after three years work it worked like a clockwork and seemed like a well tailored suit on me.
Nonetheless I felt like I was somehow wasting time with it and I felt that each penny I put on it would have been wasted in the end, seen I would not own it never ever.
So I started half heartedly to see if there were other possibilities.
After a couple of faux starts ( remember me to tell you about the flat with the star shaped corridor ^_^'' ) my parents came back with a number.
A couple of phone call later I was entering it, to find this.

Front view (guess what? It's the second floor)

The Living room window

Kitchen outside

Kitchen inside ( admire the ruins)

More ruins...

Entrance to the corridor

The engine itself :)

The horrible bathroom

That's some serious closet space!

Bedroom window

The rear garden ( not mine sadly :( )

The previous owner has left in a hurry ( bad tenant, I was told) but not before giving herself the pleasure of smashing the house to pieces.
The kitchen was a ruin, the heating system dated from the 60s ( 66 to be precise), the bathtub and sink were both broken and, in a vulgar display of cruelty the precedent tenant had stolen the door handles.
A bad ( can you spell bad? Do it) paint job did the rest and I rememeber looking in horror at all the door locks jammed by the white thick paint.
But we clicked immediately nonetheless.
I sensed the potential of this house immediately. Sure it would have been a battle, that I knew immediately, but the price was good ( very good indeed), it was in the middle of Brussels, entirely built in concrete ( the static structure of this house amazes me every time) and with a configuration that was quite peculiar for my adoptive town.
The “engine” that powers up this house was in the long alleyway that connects the living room to the bedroom and cuts the flat in the middle.
At the end of this two large windows a couple of large windows litterally drown the house in outside light, thing that , in this dark lands , is a asset never enough commended
The rest of the house is straightforward, logically built and was it not for the bathroom ( with its dumb placed bath) you could class it as visionary for somehting built in the late 60s.
I was in love, I was from the moment I saw the light cut through me and arrive to the window from the other side of the corridor.
I spare you the details of how long it took to finally sign the sale act ( On request, it is quiet a funny story... NOW) .
I rememebr though what my mate Fred told me the day I signed.
“Me and Nath are happy for you lad. Honestly, we could not stand to climb to the fourth floor of your bloody actic once more. Now visits will be more beareable.”
Good point my friend and, as if I needed some prophecy, Suzanne Vega already wrote a song on it.
Now it was only the small matter of moving and doing the basic repair to the house.
Matter that, I can assure you, would have showed us itself as not being small in any way.

Sunday, 19 October 2008


I hate “Fight Club”

I never liked it for a lot of reasons that, for now at least , can wait ( we can talk about them one day if you want).

Though there was that line in the movie that always stuck in my mind.

At a certain moment a character explains to another one how he joined the army of that lunatic of Edward Norton/ Brad Pitt and quotes “You are not what you own.”.

When I did arrive here, the living room of the flat was more or less like you see it in the pic.

It was empty, white, clean that much that the horrible linoleum that you see under me could allow it.

The first two weeks, I had only my clothes with me and slept on the floor on a mattress ( pardon me, dog kennel) made out from my winter pullovers, covered by a sheet ( first mattress (again, dog kennell) in the world one foot wide 6 5” long).

I arrived there broke, waititng for my first pay and bringing only my clothes in a bag and in four garbage plastic sacks.

After the first paycheck I bought myself a couch from IKEA that I had to build using a stone as hammer ( unbelieveable uh? Not even a hammer) and after that everything else came.

Three years later I leave this flat for another flat I bought and now I'm here, sitting and look up to this ceiling for the last time.

The new tenant will take possession of this flat this afternoon ad I will leave him this attic as the tenant before me did.

I bring in my new home everything that I call “mine” and that I found in those years.

So here we are back to that phrase.

Who or what leaves this flat? Me? Or is it what I own? Are they the same? Am I what I own?

The object, the furniture, the book are certainly me.

Whom other could they be?.

I wanted it, I desired it and I put it in that puzzle that I called home.

Nonetheless, each object is not myself, seen that in each following moment it can leave me, be sold, be lost, be given away.

I was this flat for three years and now it is not me anymore because I, in a few hours, will not anymore be there.

I bring myself and, inside me, my memories in my new house, thus I'm even what I do not own anymore.

This diary is meant to tell my story, through my new house, the works I will do in it, the places it is built in, the stories that will live inside it.

This, if you want, is the beginnig of a tale that starts from an empty living room and that, even I, do not know how will end.

I hope you'll like it.