Lived Through This

What I Learned From Living a Year in Airbnbs

First lesson: A house is not a home

Felicia C. Sullivan
Human Parts
Published in
16 min readSep 20, 2020

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Photos courtesy of the author.

When I was a senior in college, we went to Mexico. I remember the flight being turbulent, and that was the start of my lifelong fear of planes. I wondered if we’d plunge into the ocean and what that would feel like — metal breaking the surface, a body tearing its way down to the ocean floor. But I secreted my thoughts away, as I tended to do back then, because we were up in the air, drunk on cheap vodka and a future filled with possibility. It was spring 1997, and many of us already had jobs and graduate schools waiting for us on the other side of our cap and gown.

Until we put on our suits and collected our meager paychecks, we had a few months left of being children in a foreign country. And we’d jump on our beds, ignore the men carrying machine guns in daylight, and crowd ourselves into one of the many disco cabs in Acapulco. We spoke Spanish and chatted with the drivers who made their way to the clubs in the dark. We feasted on quesadillas — solamente cheese, I said, which made the whole table roar — toasted at Señor Frogs, and fought so hard we flew back to New York in an uncomfortable silence.

Before we exchanged barbs that weren’t so thinly veiled, we decided to go for a banana boat ride, which…

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Felicia C. Sullivan
Human Parts

Marketing Exec/Author. I build brands & tell stories. Hire me: t.ly/bEnd7 My Substack: https://feliciacsullivan.substack.com/ Brand & Content eBooks: t.ly/ZP5v