October 15, 2015

Apartment Building Peep Show

When you live in an apartment building in an urban area, there's a good chance your window looks into someone else's window across the street... maybe even just a courtyard separates you from your neighbor. This was new for me coming from the Midwest where everyone has fences and yards.

I love sunlight. One of the reasons we chose the apartment that we did was the sunlight. In order to have sunlight, you have to keep your shades open. The natural light was worth the initial creepiness of all of it.

In the two years living in our apartment, I've done my fair share of giggling about my neighbors. The man who works shirtless every day from his desk next to the window, the kid with the Megatron toy that creeps me out because it is always in the window, the apartment that didn't buy black out shades so they just put up cardboard in the window.

The other night as I closed the windows, I finally wondered what people see when they look in our apartment. Yep, I know what you're thinking. Why hadn't that crossed my mind in the first 23 months we've lived there? I'm as concerned as you are, but I really don't have anything to hide.

The shades are closed every night and we don't have windows in our bathroom, so there's no real peep show coming out of our apartment. I decided to make a list of things I think they would see from across the street, above and below us.

 - Wine on the window sill while I read, write or binge on Netflix.

 - The constant fixture of the dogs in the window sitting on the back of the couch. There are certain dogs that they love that they make crazy noises for out the window. There are certain dogs they don't like that get lots of loud barks. People get to see me pull them out of the window when things gets out of hand - at least three times a day.

 - Dance parties while cleaning. Sometimes they really escalate before I remember that the windows are open.

 - Lots of pacing back and forth since we are very conscious of the number of steps we take in a day and if we are close to 10,000, we walk around while watching TV. It probably makes us look insane.

 - Our plant that dies and comes back to life weekly when I remember to water it. I should take a before & after picture one of these days. I'm still amazed it makes comebacks. It's a great plant for non-green thumbs like myself.

 - Lola's race car track which is our entire apartment. She sometimes gets really wound up and runs through the apartment using the back of the couch as her turning point. It's widely entertaining and from outside, it probably looks like a blur.

 - Whatever books, magazines or other objects are currently sitting on our end table next to the couch.

It's funny to think of the glimpse into your life people get just from the few things they can see in your apartment. I'm very aware of our windows now, but that pretty much just means that I don't run around without pants on before shutting the blinds.

I'm currently watching the sunrise reflect off the windows across the street and my neighbor that is just shutting off her lights at 6:00 AM when I'm waking up. Must have been a long night.

Apartment living isn't for everyone, but I really do enjoy it.

Do you live in an apartment? Are you extra aware of your neighbors?


  1. I'm laughing at the vision of seeing you guys pacing from another apartment.

    I don't live in an apartment, but we do live in rows here throughout Philly and it's easy to catch glimpses of your neighbor's lives. I love to walk around the neighborhood and catch glimpses.

    Geege is always sitting in our bay window watching the neighborhood.

    I am anti-window treatments in general, I love light and open windows. Sometimes I need to remind myself that window treatments exist for a reason!

  2. I'm not in an apartment, but I feel this way when I walk the dog and can see into peoples windows. And then realize when I'm playing Just Dance by myself, that people can also see me!

  3. I love this post! Reminds me of the CLASSIC Hitchcock film Rear Window!! Ever seen it?! You should. Anyway- dance parties happen a lot in our house and in a tightly-packed neighborhood I'm sure some of the next door kiddos have seen and wondered what the heck was wrong with us. I pace in my office at work to get steps and try not to get caught, but sometimes my boss walks in and I try to pretend like I was heading somewhere ;) HEHE!

  4. I don't live in an apartment but I'm still aware of my neighbors. Houses are pretty close to each other where I live.

  5. Dance parties. Awesome!
    We live in an apartment but I like to walk around without pants so our blinds stay shut. :) lol

  6. I, too, have dance parties!
    Also, I can hear the woman who lives in the building next to us as she talks on her cellphone. She likes to go on her patio and talk for hours. Our buildings are really close together and the noise is amplified. I was especially aware of this the night I decided to go to sleep early and could hear every word of her conversation for more than an hour.


  7. I to do all of these things! My problem is that I just moved into an apartment without a roommate and sometimes I like to go pantless...I just ned to remember to shut the blinds!

  8. Haha, this is a fun post idea! I keep my blinds mostly shut a lot of the time because I'm on the ground floor apartment and don't want to invite any unwanted visitors to steal anything! The only thing I'm extra aware of is the bi-weekly dinner parties a neighbor a few doors down throws, because they always drink too much and get loud enough for me to hear their ridiculous conversations if I'm sitting outside on my deck. Also, my upstairs neighbor, who I've nicknamed Stomper because I can literally hear every single footstep she takes when she's home.

  9. Across our courtyard we occassionally see people walking around naked and a few times even having sex in the windows. Truth!


Thanks for reading my ramblings. It makes my heart happy.