Previous installments in this series:
As well, it is recommended to read Part 4 of Workshy Joe’s series ‘Men Who Go Ghost’, which inspired this series
As you may recall from Part 1, hundreds of years ago back in mid-1983 when I was 11 or 12 I decided that as an adult I wanted to live as an ‘urban hermit’ in a place of my own near the centre of Sydney.
In late 1995, I began living that dream in a way and have been doing so ever since. I’m not a hermit, and as I’ve gotten older I’ve come to enjoy socialising a lot, but I still like to spend a lot of time by myself and my home is my cave.
As Workshy Joe mentions in Part 4 of ‘Men Who Go Ghost’, living alone can be expensive – and as some readers will be well aware, Sydney is one of the most expensive places in the world. As well, I wanted to live in one of Sydney’s most expensive areas, the inner east – which is pricey partly because some parts are ritzy (although some parts certainly aren’t), and partly because it’s close to the city centre and other ‘colourful’ locations like the (in)famous Kings Cross red-light district.
Thus, I currently pay $260 a week for a small studio apartment in a building that doesn’t even have a lift (I’m up on the third floor, and the laundry is two storeys above on the roof).
That may seem like a steep price to pay, but the convenience of its location is a tremendous pay-off. Pretty much everything I need and want is within walking distance, and that includes (but is not limited to) a hospital, several cinemas and my psychiatrist. As well, I’m also close to main-hub railway stations like Central and Town Hall that give me access to most other things further beyond.
As well, I genuinely enjoy my part of Sydney, which is also one of the oldest parts and one of the most interesting. There is always something to see and do, and there’s also the historic atmosphere and how situations can change amazingly over time. For example, the suburb of Darlinghurst is nowadays quite pricey and trendy – yet back in the 1920s it was such a bloodbath slum that Darlinghurst was popularly known as Gunhurst until 1927 when tougher gun laws came in…but as many of the local gangs replaced firearms with cut-throat razors as weapons of choice, it gained the new nickname of Razorhurst (if you want to read more about this grim chapter of Darlo’s history, I very much recommend this book).
Finally, I’m also very fortunate in that I have a full-time job that pays reasonably well.
The only major problem I’ve had is that I’m a hoarder with a terrible weakness for books, which has resulted in a lot of otherwise free space being occupied by clutter. Fortunately, as I’ve written previously, becoming a Kindle owner has started to put a huge stop to this, and there’s also my 10-Year Plan that I’m working towards.
So, living alone as a Ghost is not too bad at all.
Until next time, stay well and take care 🙂