I am going to say it. I am ... a voyeur. A shameless, unabashed certified peeping Tom or in my case, Tomasita. I have to admit this is an affliction that consumes a tremendous amount of my time and my life.
Am I an addict? Should I be concerned? Most importantly, is there a cure or even a 12-step programme? Would I have to go to group meetings and declare, " My name is Cecile Levee, and I am a voyeur." Scandalously, I have no intentions to go to rehab. I just won't go. So, I am having my 50 shades moment, and who hasn't, let them throw the first bucket of Wench Red paint.
I confess I spend hours looking through doors; well, nice beautiful ones. Also, through windows, but I only linger at those with fabulous curtains (after all, I am a discerning voyeur), or ones that have wooden, linen or silk blinds, or better yet, my personal preference, those with no window treatment at all. I peep into bathrooms, bedrooms, kitchens, living rooms, studies and even closets... My mother thinks I am fine.
But before you judge me, I must reveal that my strange affliction has inspired a lot of the things I do and the way I do them. My taste has evolved. I am way more flexible, more forgiving of differences — as long as they are to my liking. I have learned that big is not always better, small can be forgiven, and one size does not in fact fit all. I have learned that I have a bias for white, especially in the bedroom, easier on the eyes. I have learned that personal taste is just that... personal. I have learned that some people are more adept in the kitchen than in the bedroom. Some are even bathroom people. I have learned that some people are amateurs and should get professional help or some kind of intervention.
Oh, don't get your fishnet stockings in a twist; my innocent, but all-consuming guilty pleasure is an obsession with design: all things design and décor. I have learned that inspiration is everywhere if you look with an open mind and a voyeur sensibility.
I confess. I am a design voyeur. I spend hours 'fassing' into people's houses, peeping around corners, glimpsing through drawn curtains. I confess that I "borrow" design magazines out of doctors' offices. From friends' houses. I confess I will give up buying food to buy a design magazine. I confess I think architects and designers are veritable rock stars.
I confess I sometimes go to restaurant and hotel bathrooms only to peek at the designs.
I confess in my next life I want to come back as a fusion of Frank Lloyd Wright, Renzo Piano, Tadao Ando, Richard Meier, Frank Gehry, The Hariri sisters, James Dyson, Arne Jacobsen, Micheal Graves, Ludwig Mies Van der Rohe and Le Corbusier, who designed my favourite and most desirable chair: the iconic LC4 Chaise Longue.
And as part of my self-inflicted therapy I will share pictures of some of the beautiful homes I have peeked into. Some through my lens, others through more powerful zoom lens.
So if you should see a tall, formerly blond woman with binoculars peeking through your bedroom windows, it's not to see what is happening in your bedroom. But, rather, to see what's in your bedroom.