It's been a few weeks now and I feel like I'm largely adjusted to life here in Ireland. I love the weather, the location of the apartment, and even the 'feel' of Dublin....there are a lot of things to like. And really, things aren't very different here than in the US. I've even had a few promising job interviews.
The only thing that continues to bother me is how loud the people above us are. It's not so much that they are being loud, it's that the building wasn't built with sound control in mind. They are just doing normal things that normal college students do; like walking into the kitchen and opening a cabinet. But I can *hear* them doing it. And, they keep 'college hours' which means a bedtime between 2am and 4am. Still, it's not unreasonable to use your kitchen. So, what to do? The walls are too thin, the room is poorly constructed. What can *I* do about that? Build a better room?
I'll just build an *awesome* room, inside of my room. I call it, 'The Superbed'.
With the help of Google Sketchup I was able to recreate a 3d model of the bedroom, the furniture and play with the dimensions of the 'Super Bed'...these were the top three layouts. I went with the one on the right. It felt, 'Most Super'.
The Super Bed (v0.1)
I'll admit, I miss my pick-up truck and being able to drive down to a Home Depot large enough to contain several football fields. The nearest hardware store is about .5 miles from home and that's a long walk when you are trying to carry home lumber.
The frame is roughly 5 feet wide, 6 feet tall, and 8 feet long.
After that I used cardboard from the many Amazon.co.uk deliveries we'd received. And lots and lots of tape.
Once the initial frame was in place, it was time to make a headboard.
And, a place for the TV/Playstation 3. You can't see it in the photo but I also attached four bolts that would be used to mount the TV to the wall and attached fishing line. That TV isn't going anywhere.
Then it was just a simple matter of applying the sound-proofing tiles. Truthfully, I think sheets of drywall would have worked just as well, but it was much easier to work with these.
It's still a work in progress; but you get the idea. I'm wiring up the lights (I want a light switch on each side), installing a heater/fan (again, I want a switch for this on each side of the bed too), and am waiting on the surround sound speakers to arrive. The side walls will be expanded and more sound foam will go on the inside. I'll also add an overhang making the opening on either side another 12" lower and covering that with the foam. Then I'll install a curtain rod/nice heavy curtain (I think it'll do the trick, the setup I've got now is already significantly better than what it was before. I'm also going to incorporate a shelf/night table to place an alarm clock on.
At first glance, this might seem silly. But stop and think about how much time you spend in bed. It's a lot of time. Nearly 1/3 of your life. Think of how important sleep is to your day-to-day well being. How many times have you been woken up by some external noise you don't want to hear? The Superbed is the answer! Sound proof, climate controlled, complete with HDTV, PS3, Internet access, streaming movies and TV, a 2 terrabyte harddrive filled with content, video games, blu-ray player, surround sound speakers *perfectly* symetrically aligned, light controlled....at this point, I might even install a mini-fridge.
Stay tuned for Part #2....the conclusion of the Super Bed.