Even though we moved into this apartment back in May, we are still not finished acquiring all the furniture we want/need. The last piece of the puzzle is a clic-clac for the living room. We do have a small couch, but it’s too uncomfortable and impossible to sleep on. We were supposed to receive the clic-clac today but when we called Conforama asking why it still hadn’t been delivered hours after they said it would be, they told us it was not in stock yet and to call back on Monday. ::sigh:: Well thanks for making us waste the day waiting around for an imaginary delivery truck.
Our apartment is 51 square meters (about 550 square feet), with two balconies and storage space in the basement. I really wanted a two-bedroom apartment but we were pressed for time and we didn’t even know how much money David would be making, so we decided to budget the same as for our last apartment. So we are paying the same amount for rent, but overall it should be slightly cheaper since the heating here is collectif instead of electric. Plus we are much closer to downtown – only about 5 blocks from the train station – and there is parking in the underground garage, except we have yet to get our garage since the owner is a tad senile and constantly forgets to bring the right keys to the agency. We’ve been waiting 4 months so I am starting to lose a little hope for the garage…
I had planned on posting pictures of the “finished” apartment, complete with clic-clac, but thanks to Conforama you’ll just have to imagine this clic-clac in place of the green couch.
Salon: That’s my bookshelf full of language books. David’s bookshelf is on the opposite wall. (There are, of course, more bookshelves in the hallway and bedroom.) We’ve also got a little armchair that you can just see the edge of.
On the opposite side of the room, my desk is next to the radiator and windows. I didn’t take a picture of David’s desk (to the left, next to the filing cabinet) because it is way too messy. And yes, that is Château Frontenac in Quebec City on my desktop.
Cuisine: Kitchens in Europe are mostly “bring your own” deals, so usually the only thing that is included is the sink. You must bring your own stove, fridge, and even cupboards. There will most likely only be one or two electrical outlets as well.
If you’re starting to wonder why the walls are all bare, and why I have a painting sitting on the table instead of hanging up – we are not allowed to make any holes in any walls because the apartment was just repainted a month before we moved in. For some reason they also painted over the wallpaper, and put wallpaper on all the ceilings, which are also painted over. Yeah, I don’t understand why either…
Salle de bains: Our bathroom is unlike most French bathrooms because the toilet is in the actual bathroom and not in a little room by itself. Luckily our last apartment was like this too, because the thought of a “toilet room” with no sink to wash your hands disgusts me. The shower (which already had the showerhead attached to the wall!) is to the left. The washing machine is a bit big, and barely fits in the bathroom, so the toilet is a bit cramped in the corner. We don’t have a drying machine, but just a drying rack that I put on the balcony.
Balcons: The front balcony runs the length of the living room and bedroom. Luckily Canaille cannot fit through the bars, unlike the back balcony. He used to walk along the little ledge over to the neighbor’s balcony, but their balcony is closed off with glass doors, so he had to back up in order to return to our balcony which nearly gave me a heart attack every time. We are 3 stories up above a concrete parking lot, so that’s why there is now a green grillage on the kitchen balcony in the photo above.
I love love love having balconies. Being able to sit outside and have this view is probably the main reason why:
Chambre: Our bedroom also has the same big doors that open onto the front balcony. The closet is really deep, but it’s all shelves so I have to hang clothes in the hallway closet. I was pleasantly surprised that there actually was a closet in the bedroom since most of bedrooms I’ve seen here have nothing. (Bring your own closet is also common.)
I don’t care if my map of France totally clashes with the awesome purple walls and yellow trim and black dresser. I also have maps of the US and the UK on other doors. Tape on doors, unlike holes in walls, was not expressly forbidden on the lease, so take that propriétaire!
So there’s our French apartment in Chambéry for those of you (hi mom) who were interested. Once we get the stupid clic-clac we can finally have guests stay with us, as long as they don’t mind this furball sleeping on their legs:
We are already looking for a house to rent out in the countryside, but even if we found one in our price range (not likely), we wouldn’t be moving until I’m finished working at the university in the spring. That also means David would have to drive to work everyday and I don’t know if my car is all that reliable. In any case, his office is moving in a few months so he won’t be able to walk to work any longer anyway which was the main reason why we wanted this apartment in the first place.