Why My Granny Is A Much Better Housemate Than You’d Ever Think

Think lifesaver. Not fun-dampener


by Eloise Vincent |
Published on

Due to unforeseen circumstances (a flatmate being relocated to China for work and the financial plight of being a post-recession twenty-something trying to live in London), I recently moved into my Granny’s house in South Kensington as her new roomie. It’s been a big change for me, as I always prefer living south of the river. But, seriously, in terms of lifestyle, it’s been surprisingly yet pleasantly easy.

Not for me the compulsory bridge lessons, overcooked vegetables and horribly awkward breakfasts with my boyfriend that I had dreaded. My Granny, as it turns out, is way more chilled out than my parents ever were. She’s not reluctant to give me a key, no warning about getting in too late. She’s been actively encouraging me to have people round for dinner (as long as they don’t get mud on the carpet), she’s got a new table for the kitchen and wants to show it off. Noise isn’t a problem either – her hearing isn’t the best, so the odd late-night post-dinner sing-a-long of Man In The Mirror doesn’t bother her.

Yep, living with my Granny is more than OK, it’s great, and here’s why…

1. She makes me feel like I’ve got it all figured out

Ever since I showed her how to work iTunes, Granny introduces me as ‘the next Steve Jobs’ to all her friends, despite the fact that I’ve been lying at work about my Photoshop skills. If, like mine, your Granny loves music, this is the best present you can ever possibly give her. I’m good at things simply because I was born in the ’90s. I’m only good at these things by accident, but I mean, it would be rude to argue.

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2. She encourages me to broaden my cultural horizons

In return for helping her out with modern technology, Granny helps me become (I hope) a bit more classy. Before I could say ‘Chopin’, I knew all the jingles on Classic FM. I also repped the front row as her plus-one to watch Benedict Cumberbatch as Hamlet. I’ve become more knowledgeable about plants than I ever thought possible, due to her fondness for Gardener’s World. In Granny’s world, cultural activities are high school and she’s the Queen Bee. She’s Regina George and she’s taken me under her wing. In the messy world of my mid-twenties, hanging out with me Granny enables me to feel vaguely sophisticated. And I’m incredibly thankful.

3. She wants to look after me

Grannies tends to be permanently convinced that you need to eat more, even if it’s Christmas and you’re looking distinctly squishy thanks to the office mince pie basket. Pre-Granny I’d settle for the three-day-old hummus and carrots dug out of the back of the fridge, telling myself the it’s dark and I’m too tired to go to Sainsbury’s. Now I have someone who cares, ready to greet me from work with a hot meal and a hug. Luckily for me, my Granny is pretty adventurous with her food. She loves Korean and Japanese, and she makes a mean bowl of Singapore noodles. She’s basically much better at looking after me than I am. It’s ironic, considering you’d expect it to be the other way around, but my Granny definitely doesn’t need looking after. Still, I'm planning to stick around as she gets older, just in case she needs a hand. I think I owe her one anyway.

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4. She is actually the coolest person I know

My Granny is way cooler than me. She has seen and done way more than anyone I know and has way better stories as a result. She’s lived through eras I can only dream about. For her 40th wedding anniversary, she went on a month-long cruise of the North Pole to see the Northern Lights. She makes those hippie trustafarian types I know who smoke hash and talk about the days when things were simpler look like Bernie-Madoff-style frauds. She’s the real deal. I hope we’ll only get closer as we both get older. I’m sure we will.

So, if you have the good luck to get a chance to live with your Granny, don’t underestimate her. She can definitely teach you a thing or two.

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Follow Ellie on Twitter @Eloise_Vincent

Picture: Lukasz Wierzbowski

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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