Friday, October 20, 2017
Friday -- Another Sleepover Guest, Another Test for the New Urban Lifestyle
an image on IG, asked for information, and a blogging friend I've never met, someone who now lives in London, told me that it's by Nomi Chi, whom you could follow on Instagram to see more astonishing art. . .
And now, onto the text proper . . .
At our previous home on the island, we had the great luxury of a separate guest cottage (you can catch glimpses of it, if you click on that link), two teeny bedrooms, a bathroom with a shower -- originally an outbuilding on the property, we'd finished the 300 square feet so that we could keep the main house to 1700 square feet, knowing our four kids were already beginning to move away but would be coming back someday with partners and, eventually their own kids. That happened, and the teeny two bedrooms were very well used, by our kids and our friends and the occasional author billeted for this or that writing event. Our neighbours used it once or twice when they had a superfluity of visitors. "The cabbage," our granddaughter called it, her charming combination of "cottage" and "cabin." I do miss that space. . . .(although I truly don't miss cleaning it for guests, checking for spiders under the beds, scrubbing out an extra shower, cleaning an extra toilet -- not to mention making up beds in an awkwardly tight space. . . . washing and putting away all those sheets and towels. . . . Ah, the good old days!)
Once upon a time, when we contemplated moving to the city, Pater promised that we'd find a great apartment in which we could set up a dedicated guest bedroom so that all the wonderful friends I'd be leaving behind could come and visit. And then the realities of the Vancouver condo market made themselves shockingly clear. Instead, we managed a Library/TV/Guest Room which we outfitted with the best leather-covered sofabed (our) money could buy. We managed to tuck an Ikea dresser into the full-sized closet in that room, and we store all the pillows and bedlinens in it -- when the bed's made up, the drawers are empty so that a guest could unpack should she choose, or there's room on top of the dresser to open out a (small) suitcase.
The room's a very tight squeeze once the bed's opened, but there's a good reading light on either side, and a good surface for a book, glass of water, eyeglasses. So far I've had two good friends for overnight visitors (and one was a repeat, a good sign, right?), and I'm excited to bring another back with me later this afternoon. We've also accommodated my son's family (he and his wife in the sofabed and their little girl on a narrow foam mattress (one of those fold-up ones that stores nicely but could also serve as floor cushion seating) on the floor just below them, squeezed between their bed and the wall, but apparently quite comfortable. The two oldest g'daughters have had sleepovers here, sharing the sofabed, and we've also managed with a brother-and-sister team, little guy in the Bjorn folding bed/crib, big sister in that narrow foam mattress.
Everyone who's slept on the sofabed assures us that it's very comfortable (the mattress is dense foam, with a clever design that folds across the width rather than the length). Guests have their own bathroom right next door and a fountain singing water lullabies through the night just outside the window. So far, it all seems to be working out fairly well. Of course, it would be lovely to have extra space, but we're managing nicely as is. I thought those of you who contemplate a downsizing in your future might like to know.
Okay, that's the first in a few intended posts updating you on how I'm feeling about the downsizing move to the city, now that we've been here a year. I'm off to meet my friend, launching a busy weekend of visiting and opera-going and celebratory lunches. What are you up to this weekend? And how do you manage when friends want to kip for the night? Do you make them a pallet on your floor? Unroll a futon? Unfold a foam mattress? Pump up an airbed? Or are you able to offer them a room of their own? Do you really need your privacy, so refer them to a favourite hotel or B&B? Do you wish for more space or are you content to have less to clean? I'm curious. . . . let's chat!