I have been living most of my life in private housing.
Now that my children have grown up, its time to plan for me only cos all too soon, my girls will all be married and my three bedroom apartment will be too large for me.
So I made the big decision to downgrade and downsize. A decision made with no regrets.
My new 3-rm HDB flat is less than 10 minutes walk to the MRT station and the Bus Interchange. Surrounded by two 24-hr supermarkets and two other supermarkets – spoilt for choice. Its also located within 5 minutes walk to my favourite wet market and hawker centre. There are so many hair dressing shops, mani and pedi cure shops, coffee shops that sell yummy popiah and breads, etc, etc.
Also, I pay only $30+ for conservancy charge compared to the $300+ I paid for maintenance at my former place. Hardly used the pool or the gym. So not missing much. I used to look at the big tree and green grass in front of my unit at the condo and now I still have green grass and a big tree in front of my unit but a different type of tree only mah! It does not matter cos a tree is a tree. But I do miss the cleanliness of the private estate. People there will greet you and hold the lift doors for you.
I used to shop for my household items from the departmental stores. I did not realise I’ve been ripped off cos I can find similar items at the neighbourhood shops for a fraction of the price – or maybe not but its at least 30% less expensive. I have come to realise the cost savings and convenience of living in an HDB flat and I was gushing about all the good things in living here.
Then something happened last Sunday. My sister and I had two bulky items to dispose of so we took the lift. Then one elderly guy came into the lift. And then a young man and a lady. When the lift door opened on the ground floor, I was expecting someone to at least hold the door open for us. To our dismay, the people in the lift just walked out and away. Aaargghhhh! How annoying!
Smelly and dirty floor, inconsiderate people, noisy children playing at the playground, old ladies "bitching and moaning" at the void deck, old man clearing their throats and spitting anywhere they like – have to be extra vigilante in case their missiles land on your feet – whatever.
I guess like what James said, you cannot compare an apple with an orange, or even caviar with duck eggs for that matter.
So I think I will have enough to lead a "good" life to my last day on earth, including funeral expenses.
But most importantly, I am happy living here – noise, urine, spittum and all.