From the time we are capable of thinking coherently, each one of us starts building our dream home – inside our head, at any rate. It could be triggered by a visit to a friend’s house, or something we saw somewhere—all of it comes together over the years, to give us that vision of our very own home. Often, reality intrudes and we end up settling for a nice enough home, but that dream home always lives in our psyche.
I am no exception. My childhood home was large, with a red floor that was also my canvas. Can you picture me crouched, one hand full of chalk pieces, the other drawing and the piece of cloth which was my eraser scrunched under one knee?
When I was 9, we moved away from that city and until I was 18, lived in rented homes. Finally, when we managed to buy our own apartment, it wasn’t what we dreamed about, but it belonged to us. We didn’t live there very long. At 24, we moved again, renting it out, and went through another stint of rented houses, until 1999, when we bought the apartment we now live in. It is large, it is in a nice area and we love it.
Yet, I still have a “dream home” fantasy
. . . and I’ll tell you why.
I love to look at houses. One of the first houses I fell in love with was my best friend’s home. Designed by her Dad, it was just perfect with the right amount of privacy, spacious, airy, bright, large picture windows with space to cuddle up against a cushion with a book, a lawn in front, and a pretty backyard with wildflowers and some vegetables growing as they pleased. He would always assure me that he’d design an even better house for me, may his loving, generous soul rest in happiness. I’ve spent many happy days in their house and have some wonderful memories.
Strangely over time, I realized that while I would really love an independent house with a big garden, etc., I’d rather really live in one of the apartments for rent in Pine Hills. I love the idea of a friendly community around me, and moreover, any problems are common issues and dealt with far quicker than when one’s on her own.
My present-day idea of a dream home would include the following essentials:
- Good neighbors
- A great neighborhood
- Proximity to good schools (because who wants a stressful commute!)
- Good shopping area nearby
- Well connected by local transport (totally environmentally conscious. Why, I even prefer to carpool when I book a cab)
- Easy accessibility to a railway station and the airport (yes we are 38 km away, but there are good transport facilities)
- Hospital access (I am a type 2 diabetic and neither of us is getting younger)
As far as the apartment itself is concerned,
- Good construction
- Airy and well ventilated
- Large rooms
- Easy to maintain
- Quality fittings
- Space for plants
- Parking space
- Power backup
- Well maintained lifts
- A management committee to address and resolve issues when they crop up
Inside, I’d love an open plan kitchen, a large library that doubles up as a study, a big balcony where I can sit and enjoy my coffee and perhaps watch trees swaying in the breeze, with the occasional birdsong. A garden on the terrace, if not around the house where I can spend early mornings, tending to the plants. A swing, yes, definitely a swing to jog my thoughts and set them in rhythm. Large windows with seats, like my childhood home.
Sometimes I fantasize about a Mediterranean villa or a traditional Kerala-style house.
And then, one of my friends bought a Casa Grande row house in OMR, and she just couldn’t stop showing off about it, and I really don’t blame her. It is everything a dream house should be: beautiful, spacious, the neighborhood is great, there are schools and hospitals nearby, and offers easy access to where she works.
Okay, let me confess, from the photos she showed me of the property, it looks more like a weekend getaway, except she’ll be living there. I secretly wondered whether it must have cost her an arm and a leg, and quietly checked it out online. I was surprised to find that row houses are priced at Rs.55.61 lakhs onwards. That’s an achievable dream by today’s standards! Now I am wishing I could move there. Take a look at these pics and you’ll know what I mean:
It is so serene.
And let me tell you, it isn’t only her lawns that are green! I am, too!
So yes, they have all the expected amenities such as a clubhouse with gym/aerobics/indoor games room/laundromat/barbeque facility/ sauna/Jacuzzi/swimming pool with a toddler’s pool/party hall/children’s indoor play area etc.
But what grabbed my coveting genes (yes just made that up) was the meditation room, the yoga room, the Zen garden, the lily pond, flower bed, walking and jogging tracks, amphitheater, and landscaped area with seating arrangements. Wow. There’s also a senior citizens’ park, which is thoughtful, especially since my friend has her in-laws living with her.
She also did the smart thing by investing in the pre-launch stage after doing her research on picking the right builder. For one thing, there’s a big price benefit and she got to choose the apartment she wanted. She also gets more time to make her payments and of course, a better return on investment since the property will appreciate quickly, especially with an established builder like Casa Grande which is reputed for its commitment to deadlines.
I am very much looking forward to visiting my friend when she moves in—she’s extracted a promise from me—and since I have family there, I am looking forward to good times.
What is your idea of your dream home?
I’d love to hear it in the comments!
So many of the same dreams I have and I’m glad to say that after fifteen years, we’re moving into a place that ticks a lot of those boxes. Yes, there will be challenges for sure but I’m looking forward to the change. This place looks lovely by the way. Take me along when you visit the friend. 🙂
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This makes me think of Carl Jung’s work, Memories, Dreams, Reflections in which, in part, he talks about how the house he lived in expanded and evolved in tandem with his growth. It was something he noticed in retrospect. I wonder if our homes always reflect our lives in this way. In a way, the homes I have lived in, from the very start, have been the perfect backdrop for what occurred there, even including my university dorm rooms.
It was nice to drop by today! Have a good one!
It is always wonderful to see you and read your comment, Lori! Jung has a point – I love the way our homes evolve, especially with elders and children in the same space. Right now, I am dealing with all the stuff that has comfortably settled in our home, and am actively trying to find new homes for them. 🙂 I love my home, such as it is. Some people think it is not modern enough, but we quite like it that way. We always feel happy when we open the front door and walk in! Funny thing is, our visitors often make it a point to mention how nice it is! My Mom always said that it is the aura of a house.
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I agree with your Mom VIdz! A home is defined by how it feels.
Lori Gosselin recently posted…Why I Wrote a Book About Community Building
I am living in my dream home. It has every one of the essentials you mention. When I moved to Portland 25 years ago, a realtor took me out to look at houses the first day I was in town. Nothing appealed to me, and I was discouraged. On the way back to the hotel, I saw a for sale sign and asked her to turn down that street. When we pulled up in front of the house, I said, “That’s my house.” I could just “see” myself coming home to this house every day. I bought it that night, and I’m still living in it!
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That sounds amazing! I am locked into a home that is nice, but not ideal. With our limited income I can only dream of my favorite location along the Eastern United States seaboard. At least I get to visit one or two weeks a year. And I do enjoy our summertime vulture wakes (a real term for the gathering birds) and my perennial gardens. There are also several cozy writing spaces. I shouldn’t complain!
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I too find living in apartment is better than living in an independent house because of the reasons you mentioned above. Currently, we are living in a society apartment, which is on rent. And after 8 months of living here, we are planning to purchase one apartment here, which I hope would turn out to be our dream home. 🙂
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My dream home had evolved over the years, to the point where I now really want a small cottage by a fast flowing river in the middle of nature. The only pre-requisites are good internet connection and reliable postal/courier services.
A girl can dream, right? 🙂
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Definitely! And you should, Shinjini! I know many people who do make it a point to at least get away to a place that’s a cottage with a river flowing by. So blissful just to think about it!
Vidya Sury recently posted…Are you living in your dream home?
Your friends’ house sure looks like one dream home. As much as I adore big bungalows, I am an apartment person. It’s easy to maintain, safe and gives a good social life as compared to the residents in a colony.
I am yet to live in my dream home. But I’m sure with time, everything will fall into place 🙂
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Me too, Geets. But that won’t stop me from dreaming of a bungalow! My best wishes to you for all your dreams to come true!
Vidya Sury recently posted…Are you living in your dream home?
How much is the 55 in Canadian dollars?? That looks like a beautiful place and perfect when you don’t want or can’t have all the work that a regular home has. Now, as for Dream home…..if I won the big lottery, I would love to live back in the country again. I grew up in the country and it was so peaceful and just beautiful. I would want my home to be safe and stable with a roof that would never need to be reshingled. I would love to have a walk in shower with all those nice water spray things and I would love a jacuzzi tub big enough to fit 2 people and that I could just walk in and out of. Now, with all that being said, we can always say what we want but would we ever be truly satisfied? My hubby often talks about area and the house and often it is negative. I look at him and just shake my head because I have a home…not a house but a home. I have a library with books I love to read. I have my own craft room and I have beautiful carvings, knick knacks, my fur babies and love. I realize the neighbours can be a pain at times but, with my condition, I don’t think I could logically live in the country any more. My home could stand for improvement but what Home doesn’t? I will get that jacuzzi but not walking in but I will get this as well as that shower…one day but my home is filled with pets, beauty and love so I am happy.
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Hugs Birgit! I hear you! Fantasy and dream homes are not always real, and for good reason, I guess. You know, I felt just a teeny bit envious when my neighbors revamped their flooring with gorgeous tiles. It looks beautiful, but they are so careful about not spilling anything, not letting their grandkids play with their toys on the floor and take care not to drop anything. Now, I’d hate to do that and realized I am quite happy with my ancient mosaic flooring! It is ultimately how comfortable we’ve made our homes, and the love we fill it with. So rightly said. I yearned for a bathtub, you know. Now I know that I couldn’t really hoist myself out of one, easily! Haha. Rs.55 lakh would be 110,000 Canadian Dollars. I love you for your presence here.
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