Measuring up!

Black is beautiful, but too much black is charcoal” — that was the tongue-in-cheek saying I immediately thought of upon receiving the Porter by Yoshida Company bag on the mail yesterday. I already have eight black bags but it did not prevent me from getting this briefcase/messenger bag. I was really happy because the bag was lightweight and both the straps and rolled handles are comfortable on my shoulders. The coated canvas gives off a leathery finish on pictures, but I guess it will hold up really well under the heavy rains.

Porter by Yoshida Company briefcase messenger bag

Porter by Yoshida Company briefcase messenger bag and Red Wing 8875 boots

Anyway, on my way to work today, I dropped by the Handyman store in Farmers Plaza to buy locks and bolts for the apartment we will be renting starting in June. I found the aisle dedicated to these items and I had a great time choosing what should be used to secure our apartment. At first, I was just looking for a traditional door knob but I remember Mon describing an alternative. He was not able to give its exact name but when I saw the ‘deadbolt lock’, I immediately sent him a photo to ask if it was what he had described.  I subsequently bought approximately Php 900-worth of items, which we would be giving to the landlady so that they will be installed during the repainting of the unit.

Locks and bolts from the Handyman storeSpeaking of repainting, I wanted to have the unit’s paint changed from yellow to at least off-white, just like what I’ve mentioned in my previous post. The unit is due to be repaired/renovated for occupation this weekend, so I also asked the landlady if she could have it repainted and I will just pay for the extra cost. I wanted off-white because that is the color of our walls in our house, so the color scheme is a piece of home away from home. Our extremely yellow roomSo during dinner break, Faye accompanied Mon and me to the apartment . We needed to give out the locks to the landlady, and I also had to measure the floor area so we can proceed in deciding what pieces of furniture to purchase/bring. I know that I should have brought a retractable measuring tape, instead of the one made for human/fabric measurements because my hands were a bit dirty as the place was still quite dusty. It was an oddly-shaped studio apartment (well, at least the area excluding the bathroom), so I have drawn a rough sketch on paper of the floor area to facilitate measurement.

Floor plan of the studio apartmentWhen I got there, my immediate decision was to use inches instead of centimeter. I normally use inch-foot when measuring bags and clothing, but I usually resort to centimeter-meter when measuring space or floor area. SO I had no idea why I immediately jumped the gun on inches, when centimeters could have given me a more accurate measurement, especially I needed every single space I could measure. Well, no good crying over spilled milk so I would just have to live with the measurement I have made.

From the sketch, I have generated this floor plan of the unit with approximate measurements of every single side of the polygon. The total floor area is 115.50 ft²! It was not much but I see it as a challenge.  I’m not big in interior decoration as I never had the chance to foray into tinkering whatever it is that we have in our house. But honestly, I see the limited as an opportunity and I was greatly inspired by this “IKEA Small Spaces – Small ideas” video.

I love the idea of maximizing every bit of space available, and having items with multiple functions. What worries me the most is the amount of clothing, shoes and bag I have. I’ve been doing a mental inventory and selection of what items I will be bringing with me; and as much as I have pared down that list, I still could not think of how I will manage to properly fit them in the unit. We will be going to the Makati malls on weekend, and I look forward to seeing possible options for the bed and closet (if we will be getting one). I think our work would be easier because we have the floor plan with us. I just  hope we’ll find a decently-price sofa bed because that is the whole point of moving from Marikina to Makati —to have a decent sleep!

Tuesday ordeal: apartment hunting

When I reported a lost ATM card two weeks ago, I was given an option to forward the replacement to the branch in Ayala Avenue, instead of claiming it from the branch where I opened the account (i.e. Ortigas). I declined because I also needed to claim statements (for lack of better word, because I honestly do not know what they are called) of cleared checks I have issued and even if this is my third year paying for the mortgage, I had no idea right from the start that such statements should be personally claimed and are not mailed by UCPB. They only keep six months-worth of letters, and the rest would be shredded. =/

Oh, hello OrtigasFirst of all, two weeks —it took a total of two complete weeks for UCPB to issue a replacement card. When I requested for one in April 23, the staff in Ayala branch informed me that the new card can be claimed in about a week. Good thing I was in no rush to use the new one, but surely the circumstances would be different if it were for my payroll account.

I could not remember when was the last time I’ve been in the Ortigas area. I was also about to visit the developer, whose office was located near the UCPB – Ortigas branch but decided against it at the last minute. It took me about ten minutes to do all of my business in the bank, and when I was about to leave their building, I almost hailed a cab en route to Makati. I was able to stop myself. In the following weeks, I will be surely having a lot of things to buy and pay for. I am in the process of moving out of our house and moving in to an apartment in the Makati-Pasay area. All unnecessary expenses should be kept at a minimum, and as it was only about noon , I could surely walk until EDSA and just take a bus. LOL I was extremely proud of myself. =D

I had to be in Makati early as well, because Mon and I would be searching for prospective apartments to rent. It was no easy task and we found ourselves bickering during the entire time about various concerns regarding cost, location and accessibility. I was not really happy with all of the places that we have visited because it was either the monthly rent was not commensurate with the floor area, or the justifiably-priced was located in an unaccessible location. And then around dinner time, I thought of calling the apartment I have inquired from last week (who had mentioned that somebody had already gotten an available unit ahead of us), and tried my luck if the unit was still available. To my surprise, I was informed that they still have an available one and as we barely finished our dinner, we headed straight away to the apartment.

The studio-type apartment that we found

When we met the landlady in the corner of the street, she gave a caveat that the place was not that big. I braced myself to see the same floor area of the one we have visited earlier (i.e. the price that is non-commensurate with the floor area), just to lower my expectations. But when we finally opened the door of the apartment, it wasn’t that bad and I was happy to see that it was not a bare and square area, similar to the one located in the Palanan area. And unlike that apartment located on the third floor, this one was on the ground floor, so it won’t be such a pain to go back if ever we left something . The landlady was a kind middle-aged woman, who informed me that the one who looked and supposedly got the unit would not be able to reserve it until he gets his salary on the 15th. I did not hesitate to give the downpayment because clearly there was no way I was letting go of the unit.

So now, Mon and I have about three weeks to prepare the place for habitation. I am not a fan of the yellow walls and I am thinking of having it repainted at least an off-white color, similar to our walls at home. This will be our home away from home, so I want the walls to look as remotely identical to my present room. =)