Even smaller than Xavier de Maistre’s ‘bedroom’ is my flat’s balconette which adjoins the east-facing chamber that acts as my bedroom. Though a mere 2 feet by four feet in size, this balconette is a worthy spatial promontory that has seen much action. Most of this has been from the pigeons that frequent it, usually in the winter mornings between 9 and 10 when I lay out a sprinkling of sunflower seeds. In summer too, its bars are a fine sunbathing spot for the basking Musca domestica.

As well as offering a blistering aspect of a Warsaw dawn, the balconette is also something of a miniscule observatory from where I gaze at the night sky. For these reasons and for its capacity to oxygenate and allow me to step out from the inside, this tiny mouth of a balcony is the most valuable space in the whole apartment. I reckon the pigeons and the flies might go along with that too.

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