Saturday, January 06, 2007

My New Digs: The Attic

When I go into your house I don't want to see your collection of priceless Fabergé eggs, or your fishtank, or the new wallpaper in the bathroom. I want to see your attic and your basement.

Why's that? I don't know. I guess for the same reason I love railroad tracks and storm sewers: they're parts of our society that you're not supposed to see, and for that reason they often hold the best surprises. And you get the thrill of looking at something that very few people have bothered to look matter how dull it turns out to be.

In my new apartment I have both a basement AND an attic. The basement is easy to get to (and more than a little gross) but the attic is a real chore: you need to take the shelves out of one of the upstairs cabinets and then climb up through a hidden crawlspace.

I knew that I couldn't handle living here without first exploring the attic, so during the first few days I laboriously removed the shelving, bought a flashlight, and pushed my way up through the trap door. After enduring a disgusting fall of dust, wood flecks, and insulation, I poked my head through and took some pictures.

What did I find? Nothing. It's just bare rafters and insulation. I did a cursory check for rodent nests or hornets, listened to the rain awhile, then climbed back down and put the shelves back in. Never to return.

So this adventure was about as exciting as opening Al Capone's vault, but sometimes you've just gotta know.

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