Con: not having a home

One of the major disadvantages to this quirky lifestyle I’ve created for myself is home instability.  When everything else is up in the air, not having a stable address just might be the worst part.  It’s probably the thing that would deter most people from choosing this route.  And I don’t blame them.

Occasionally I look back on some of my former apartments and try to remember what it felt like to be at home.  Places where I could have stayed for much longer.  But they rarely kept me for more than 3 years.  There was the cute, oddly-shaped Oakland  apartment with the red door.  I had a sliver of a view of Lake Merritt, a private entrance, and a back door, all of which made me think I was doing something.  In Philadelphia I had the nicest and cheapest (in retrospect) apartment, with a huge porch, two floors, a gigantic bedroom, and a view of one of my favorite Ethiopian restaurants.  Forget about everything else that may have been upsetting me at those times…they were the good ‘ole days!  I had a lease, some keys, and immediate access to all of my belongings.

Today, well, not so much.  Returning to Amsterdam has been absolutely delightful, with the only exception being my technical homelessness.

My stuff is in storage (it’s getting used to it).  And I’m renting a temporary room.  Bleh, even the sound of it makes me queasy.

The place is incredibly charming, with the prettiest canal view.  It’s in one of my favorite neighborhoods.  And it’s cheap.  So in some ways, I feel lucky to have landed on a borrowed bed with these perks.  But if I’m going to be honest with you, as cute as it all is, this is some bullshit.  I need my own keys, a lease, and access to my belongings.

room with a view

room with a view

I only have one more month in the room with a view.  And as I’m currently suffering from address instability, I have no idea where I’m heading next. I’m officially part of the Amsterdam housing saga that I’ve so often heard about (but escaped thus far as a student).   Let’s just hope that I finally get a grip of these bootstraps and upgrade to some keys of my own soon.  Because this foolishness is getting old quickly.

8 thoughts on “Con: not having a home

  1. Your travels are so brave! I felt similarly when I was moving every six months after college, but it’s been a long time — I’m about to venture in the same direction. Just know when it gets difficult that you’ve inspired some of us to live on the edge more — I hear that’s where the fruit is. 🙂


    • YES! Live on the edge! It’s definitely where the tasty fruit is (or maybe it just seems tastier because I’m so hungry, lol). I hope your next move brings lots of blessings, as I’m sure it will. Can’t wait to see where your exciting journey leads you next. Cheers to the good life!


  2. Dana P. I’ve missed your posts. I’ve been lightweight worried even though I know Ghana crew folk always land on their feet.


    • Oh no! Sorry to worry you. My silences can go one of two ways – functioning/happy or depressed/fetal position. Fortunately, this time around it’s a happy silence. And homelessness has never gotten us down. Check the memories from Ghana ’03 ;).


  3. i’ve just been reading through your posts (particularly the sinterklaas debates!) and just wanted to say hi! i’ve been here in rotterdam for 1.5 years now still trying to get used to my new life, and it was reassuring to read another (black female) american’s journey. any pointers for the homesickness (if you’ve known it)? i was good in the beginning, but now i just question why the hell am i still here…


    • HI!!! It’s nice to hear from you! But I’m sad to hear you’re not feeling so happy in R’dam at the moment. Hopefully you have a visit planned to see family and friends at home some time soon. And don’t forget your local friends can also be family – if that helps fight the homesickness?

      But don’t worry. During Zwarte Piet season, we’re all aching to be somewhere else 😉


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