confronting our neighbor, or how to say “b*tch, keep it down!”

picture of a woman trapped in a box. Photo by Dan Machold.

sometimes apartment living is like being trapped in a box

This is the first apartment Chris and I have lived in since 2002 where we lived close to downtown Montreal for a year and a half before returning to New Zealand.

Like everything else in New York, especially Manhattan, space is a premium. On the sidewalks everyone walks with a steely determination to get to where they want to go. On the Upper West Side this can mean veering in and out of moms with strollers and keeping out of the way of kids (and sometimes parents) on scooters. We’ve found that the floor between apartments in the old brownstones is paper thin, serving as a further reminder that we are all boxed into our cramped apartments literally living one on top of the other.

Stomp, stomp, stomp! That’s our upstairs neighbor padding across the floor at 4:00 in the morning. We’re not sure if she is actually a bear or in fact a human being. Her 4:00 am wake up call is usually followed by what can only be described as jumping and then self-flagellation as she races around after her shower (the f word and other expletives, are clearly heard in our room). I’m pregnant and Chris has busy days at work  – this loss of 2-3 hours of sleep per day has been wreaking havoc on our sanity for the past 2 weeks. Luckily her 1 bedroom apartment only takes up the back part of our place, so Preston never has to hear her – he gets to sleep like a baby. This is apartment living, so just lump it you say? Well, no I don’t believe it has to be like this. The she-bear living upstairs has no clue of her surroundings and or the basic things she could do out of respect for her neighbors. Things like not rocking around the house in high heels for 3 hours straight, putting your alarm on snooze while you take a shower so that is goes off again non stop for 15 minutes until you get out of the shower, slamming doors unnecessarily and skipping rope (I’m convinced her 4 am wake up is to do some sort of low impact workout that starts with skipping rope) would make her a much better neighbor.

We’ve decided we need to get up there and introduce ourselves first, then a week later if this is still going on we can hopefully bring up the subject in a friendly way.

What do you think? Have you ever had a loud neighbor? What did you do about it to restore some sort of peace to your personal space.

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3 Responses to confronting our neighbor, or how to say “b*tch, keep it down!”
  1. […] // I know what you’re thinking, paying for a nap is crazy. But if you know anything about my ongoing issues with upstairs crazy loud lady, you’ll understand that its not that weird. In fact from the reviews on Yelp, alot of New […]

  2. […] It has everything that I wanted and everything all the apartment brokers said we could not have for the price we wanted in Brooklyn. Well, a big raspberry to them all, for less than we budgeted we have big sunny windows, a living and dining room, a backyard (the more New York style backyard seems to be more concrete than green, but that’s okay), a laundry room used only by 2 other apartments (I will miss sending my laundry out, but really not practical if I am going to use cloth nappies) and space and more space! By New York standards our house is palatial. I was not interested in living in a concrete box in the sky or below inconsiderately loud neighbo…. […]

  3. martina
    May 15, 2014 | 11:11 am

    Found your page via youtube… just surfing your blog and wanted to know how you resolved the neighbor?

KiwiCanadian expat adventures with my husband and 2 kids from life in New Zealand to New York and back again. Adventures in inspired family living, travel, health & fitness.Read More »