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My House

My new house is eight floors up and almost bare. My family owned the flat since I was 12-years old. It  was vacant since then.

The flat was… is quite well-maintained. The tiled floors were whole, white and faintly rough; although the tiled walls in the kitchen bloated outwards. Water ran. Bulbs lit when switched on. And the bathroom tiles were imprinted with old cartoon of Ariel, the Japanese mechanised wonderkid.

As such, moving in was quite hassle-free: unlatch the heavy ABRIO lock; wash and scrub the apartment over and again; live in it.

I take a minimalist approach (also known as cheapie). Thus my place, all five rooms of it, is quite spartan. There is no TV, radio, fridge, cooking equipment, telephone, curtains or washing machine. Whatever I found – a moldy sofa bed, two tables, a ladder, a rocking chair, some kind of clothes hanger that dangles from window ledges, a fan, a foam mattress that goes on top of my sofa bed before I sleep, and a green, plastic cup that I suspect will break when I drop it – was all that I used.

My house – lacking the constant babble of the world-at-large – resembles a bear cave in winter. "Boring", as a friend so pithily dismissed it. I like it this way.

I read, write, soak and slap and wring my clothes, grow bitter at past insults, and life surrounds me, unlike my other much-quieter house.

My neighbours’ lit cubicles are mini TV-screens of family drama (sadly they are all quite PG). Loud old men visit the coffee shop below my flat. They are served by pretty, Hokkien-spewing servers. When I drink there, my beer mug would always be filled by the Tiger-beer lady. And there are always people around – strolling, chatting, eating in their domestic finest.

My new house: eight floors up, a modern bear cave, home.

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