Living Out of a Suitcase

Firstly, I want to thank everyone who took the time to read my last post. It seems like the real, straight forward personal writing has a lot of following and its the most read post of all of my “blogging career” to date. So thank you for taking the time to read it & supporting me.

It was the 5th of January 2020 and we were packing up our beautiful two bedroom, top floor apartment in which we lived for just a little over 14 months. It was the final step in making the big move – moving in with the in-laws for the week as our flights were booked for the 13th of January (I am not one for superstitions, In fact I passed my drivers test on Friday the 13th). We didn’t want to stay in the apartment until the very last minute, it would be too much stress packing everything up while trying to tidy up the last bills/meetings etc.

We moved into the spare room in the house (not our old bedroom) and that was OK, but it was much smaller than what we were used to. We were also living out of 5 suitcases and piles of “I might bring this with me” stuff. It was overwhelming. For me, an utter clean freak living out of a case where I cannot locate anything that would make me look like a human being resulted in wearing sweats for the week. Attractive. #OOTD

We eventually made our way over to Vancouver and reached our first destination – a hotel in the heart of the city, an area called Yaletown. This was our first stop for 2 nights. Although the place wasn’t super modern, it was warm, central and clean. Everything I needed to try and recover from my chest infection.

We then moved into a sublet (Sublet: A place ordinarily rented by an individual, rented out to someone else during the period of their absence) for two weeks. In Ireland sublet is really unheard of and to be honest I would never do that but apparently in Vancouver its quite common. (Just like the fact that I had to wire $300+ to a total stranger via PayPal even before I seen the place or set my foot on a Canadian Soil but sure that’s cool.)

The sublet was located right of the Skytrain (local Metro) which was deadly. I mean you walked out of the station and the house was right there! We had to do few trips back and forth between the hotel and sublet in order to bring our multitude of bags over. It was a basement suite, down a windy set of stairs. One of the roommates had a two year old Labrador and as much as I don’t like dogs (I hate them) I really liked her. It was like an instant connection, she was beautiful and so so friendly and also a size of a horse. When she jumped, she was above my head. You couldn’t keep your bedroom door open because she was so nosy she would barge in, you couldn’t leave the bin open because she’d rummage through it looking for food and don’t even dream about leaving your food on any surface in the living space because it won’t be there when you come back. We walked her sometimes; she had so much energy that it was like she was walking me and not the other way around.  As I mentioned we were in the sublet for 2 weeks, there were 2 boys living there and I can’t say I ever saw anyone clean it. That was the biggest problem there, it was nasty. There were dog hair everywhere, like literally everywhere and I don’t think the vacuum saw a light of day in months. Of course, I couldn’t admit it to my hubby that I cringe even boiling the water for my tea there because he was already chewing my ear off about how disgusting this place was…. One of us had to stay strong!! Haha… I’m laughing about it now, but I wasn’t then.

We were so desperate to get out of there that finding our own apartment became a priority over anything else. Places are usually let from 15th or the 1st of each month. We missed the window for the 15th and our sublet was only available until the 28th so we had to organize yet one more place to stay. If that doesn’t scream stray dogs I don’t know what does. The days went on and we kept going to the library in search for a new place to live. When you think you could potentially be homeless (I’m of course exaggerating) in a foreign country your survival skills kick in and you’ll hold onto any ray of hope. We went through the usual scams on Craigslist where the “landlord isn’t currently in the country but they will be willing to ship the keys via FedEx….” yeah right I don’t know what sort of idiots actually fall for that. I guess somebody does if they keep on doing it. So one day we saw a cute Studio in the heart of the city, 5 minutes walk from the beach and we got lucky and arranged a viewing. It was a Saturday and we had two viewings set up – the Studio by the beach and another one right on the main city center street which actually ended up having windows looking out at a massive building site scheduled for ongoing works for the next 2 years. That was a no go! We ended up taking the first apartment we saw and when I tell you I could sleep at night (even with all the dog hairs) I’m not lying. It was a huge relief to know I now have somewhere to live come February 1st…


We were scheduled to leave the sublet on January 28th and had booked a Condo Hotel on the main street in the city center. As luck would have it this hotel was NEXT DOOR to the second apartment we viewed and our windows looked out onto the building site which started at 7am every morning. Boy, Am I glad we didn’t take that apartment to begin with; But to be quite honest I am not sure if the one we chose is much better after all shenanigans that are happening here at the moment, but I’ll keep you all in the suspense and I’ll leave the details for the next time….


J xo

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