The inner-city pad

Wednesday 29 September 2021 – Auckland City.

We have just completed the first week in our new flat, and the good news is I am still happy. This is particularly good news as we are here until the end of February and I don’t want to be sad for five months.

The flat is located on the fringe of Auckland city centre, opposite a park, a ten minute walk to the harbour side, five to the supermarket and less than 15 to Eleanor’s office; assuming she will one day be able to go to work there. Yes we are still in lockdown, though down to level 3 for the last week, which for us is basically the same as level 4 but with takeaway coffee and food. Though, we have had one takeaway coffee and one take out lunch, so far. If things go well there will only be one more week of level 3, before dropping to 2 and a lot more freedom to do things; like visit Mum for instance, and have a pint in a bar.

The flat is very comfortable, fully furnished, modern, and expensive. We didn’t have to buy anything, such as bedding and towels to move in, so I think things will balance out in the end. All property is expensive in Auckland. The thing I am liking the most is that given we are quite central and near some fairly busy roads it is pretty quiet and we don’t hear much of the neighbours; which is a blessing after the Air B n B.

I took a few bad photos of the place; and now realise there is an art to taking good real estate photos.

The building is eight storeys tall and two flats wide on our side, meaning we only have one neighbour, as well as one above and one below. The flat straddles two streets, the entrance on the quieter Dock St, though our flat is on the opposite side.  I love the pipe work.

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We are on the 4th floor and have a view of Victoria Park and up to Ponsonby from the deck and the city north from the bedrooms.

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There was a stunning sunset on Monday night, though the sun itself is blocked by the big tree directly opposite. We have had two early evening glasses of wine on the deck; there is traffic noise, but it wasn’t too intrusive. There is a BBQ on the deck and I am looking forward to testing that out when the weather permits.

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There is a car park with a locker and bike storage in the basement, though we do not own a car and it appears that not many of our neighbours do either as I have only ever seen one car parked in any of those nine spaces.

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The living area is comfortable and larger than I expected it to be, we don’t feel cramped, even with us both ‘working’ in the same space.

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There are two bedrooms, one of which is off the living area and separated by a glass sliding door. This was quite common with the flats we were looking at, and now we are here I can see the point, it really does open the living space out and brings more light in via the bedroom window. We bought a cheap desk and office chair and Eleanor has her workspace in the doorway to the bedroom and this works well. I am perched on the dining table.

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The master bedroom has an ensuite and walk-in wardrobe, neither of which I have had in a flat before. There is a TV and though I am not a big TV watcher this could be useful if I am want to watch TV while Eleanor is working or on conference calls and I need to leave the living area. I can be disruptive at times, particularly when bored. Eleanor does have a bit to put with some days.

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I like the kitchen area, over the week we have got used to how it works, and how we can work in the area together; like making lunch and breakfast. The main issue with the kitchen is those lovely shiny surfaces are now covered in fingerprints. I will not be looking for something that shiny in my next house as I don’t want to spend my time wiping more surfaces than I need to.

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In summary, the flat is great (the neighbours are quiet so far) and I am as happy as I can be given we are living in fairly restricted times.

The other good news over the last week is that the three boxes of clothes we shipped over from the UK were finally delivered on Saturday, about six weeks after they were due. We now have a good collection of big jerseys, heavy coats, scarves and beanies, just in time for summer.

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It was good to get the first week out of the way; we have fully unpacked, settled in and have good routines for living. All we need now is to be able to go out and do things.

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