Please read the diary, then tell me: In the context, "since I was here" or "since I have been here"?

Thursday 15, June, 1944

Dear kitty,

I wonder if it’s because I haven’t been able to be outdoors for so long that I’ve grown so crazy about everything to do with nature. I can well remember that there was a time when a deep blue sky, the song of the birds, moonlight and flowers could never have kept me spellbound. That’s changed since I was here.

…For example, when it was so warm, I stayed awake on purpose until half past eleven one evening in order to have a good look at the moon for once by myself. But as the moon gave far too much light, I didn’t dare open a window. Another time some months ago, I happened to be upstairs one evening when the window was open. I didn’t go downstairs until the window had to be shut. The dark, rainy evening, the wind, the thundering clouds held me entirely in their power; it was the first time in a year and a half that I’d seen the night face to face…

…Sadly…I am only able to look at nature through dirty curtains hanging before very dusty windows. It’s no pleasure looking through these any longer because nature is one thing that really must be experienced.


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Comments  (Page 2) 
IvanhrIt's wrong if she still lives there.
After we have read the diary, can't we draw the conclusion that the author still lives there? Why do you use "if"?

Yes, that's my understanding too. And for that reason, "was" should have been "have been".
Your conversation is wandering from the point. I'm think. The difference is in the two verbs used:

That's (=That has) changed since I came here-- 'Come' (= arrive) is a point in time (Anne came there on 11 August 2009, for instance). Since 11 August, she has been spellbound-- this is a period of time from 11 August to now.

That's changed since I have been here-- 'Be' is not a point in time; instead it is a period of time, the period from 11 August to now. Since Anne has been here (11 Aug to now), she has been spellbound (11 Aug to now).-- Native speech permits the present perfect in the 'since' clause if both actions are durational and essentially coterminus. Swan deals with this in Practical English Usage, 2nd ed section 499 (on my lap at the moment).
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