I sit here this morning surrounded by boxes, suitcases and bags. The walls of my flat look tired and bare, with crumbling paint and the odd stain showing through. The worn out kitchen and out of date bathroom are as scrubby now as they have always been. I am not unhappy to be leaving.
During my two years living in Buenos Aires I have always been in this flat, and though it’s dark and dingy, and not in the greatest shape, it has served me well. Firstly, I got it at local rates in Argentine pesos, (vastly cheaper than the usual dollar prices most foreign people pay), and the location has been perfect. In the central neighbourhood known as Tribunales, one block from Corrientes Avenue and all its theatres and restaurants, and only ten blocks or so from my work. Easy enough for me to nip home for lunch, and no commuting underground on the packed subte for twenty minutes each morning and evening.
But its lack of space and light, and my neighbour’s bedroom window almost within arm’s reach of mine, has left me ready to move on. My bags are packed and the removal van is booked. No more hanging my wet towels in the kitchen window to dry, and no more lowering the blinds every time I want to change clothes.
My relationship with this place is nearly over and a bright new life elsewhere in the city, in trendy Palermo Viejo, awaits me with a sunny terrace and a sky view. I feel inspired, and I can see myself now, exercising my fingers as I start this new blog in my new place. The two years of Argentine stories itching to make it into type. Perhaps I’ll even sit outside on that balcony as I write.