My flat

At the moment I have ideas for at least 3 posts:

Whether IT really is a good job for autistic people (spoiler alert: I don’t think it is)

Why I needed to see how the testing nipple looked like on my gas meter before calling my gas supplier

How I was sectioned in 2019

And, obviously, the question about autism that Professor Baron-Cohen got absolutely wrong.

Well, that’s 4 actually. Never mind, let’s not focus on this minor, little detail.

Oh, and why I couldn’t sleep well last night (ok, that’s a short one: because after two days of hibernating myself I started feeling in the evening that I can live my life again. The heating was back on and, only at 21.30 I realised I didn’t hear any noise from downstairs since after neighbours’ kitchen ceiling has been taken off. Funny thing, isn’t it, when I hear them, I get so focused on the noise, and when the noise is not there any more I fail to notice it. Obviously if the situation was normal, I mean no problem with a testing nipple, I would have noticed it for sure. It’s just strange that I didn’t.

For now, however, I want to talk about my flat as today is the anniversary of me moving in. The anniversary of exchanging contracts was actually a few days earlier, probably on the 2nd – you see, I’m not really obsessed with dates. I also didn’t even think to post about it around the time – I guess I’m also not focused on anniversaries.

So, at the beginning of 2013 I was lucky enough to receive larger sum of money from an unusual source (it was all legal though), I was working full time in Reading at the time, which is a city closer to London, therefore rather expensive. I was also doing a university course in maths, so I was quite busy. However, when the course finished, I started looking for ‘a place to call home’ otherwise called buying a property. In Reading I could only afford a small studio, somewhere far away from the centre, and I quickly decided I didn’t want to live like that so I decided to move. Quickly enough I decided I would go to Swindon. It was much cheaper but close enough to both Reading and London. One day I got on the train to have a look around (I never been to Swindon before), I didn’t like the town centre too much but I loved Old Town and Queens Park, and I thought, I’m moving.

I started looking for a nice, slightly larger one bedroom flat, but this one popped up in my search, with an extra bedroom, utility room, small private garden and the price just slightly higher than what I initially wanted to pay.

And this way, I’m a homeowner. I suppose I was really lucky to get this flat and have my mortgage paid off before I was 42 (just a month before I was sectioned), especially with all the troubles I got myself into due to what happened in Home Group. The flat is by no means perfect and I find it irritating that I’m constantly aware of my downstairs neighbours, but then it has large windows and there’s nothing outside to block the light so it’s really bright inside, which I love. It also has a modern kitchen, although not really to my taste.

I am quite sensitive to how space around me is organised and this flat is not ideal, with long hallway and larger living room (I’d rather have small living room and separate dining room instead) and a tiny bathroom, however I am fully aware that with smaller budget like mine my choices would be limited and it’s possible that I wouldn’t even be able to find a place that would have the layout I really want and it was as bright as my current one.

So I am not complaining, I do appreciate what I have, even though at times I really don’t think I’m cut out to be a home owner.

However, I don’t know what it is: whether the layout, or possibly that ridiculous dotted carpet that I can’t make myself to replace as it’s too much trouble, or the fact that coming to Swindon was all a bit random really, or maybe just because I’m not British so I think I don’t belong to this country… I really do not know, but I don’t feel like this is my home at all. I feel like my flat it’s just a box where I store myself.

Possibly, if I saw it as home, it would be easier for me to relax, to keep it clean and to book repairs? I really don’t know, but I’m wondering if other autistic people feel the same way about where they live. And then, what about neurotypical people – is it easy for them to call their properties home? As I said, sometimes I really wish I could get a grant to research neurotypicals.

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