World View: Confirmed

January 28, 2009 · Posted in Life 

In my Christmas update I wrote as follows:

I seem to feel that there has to be some kind of equilibrium with things – wild streaks of lucky breaks leave me feeling suspicious of what kind of nasty stuff will counterbalance them. I find these superstitious feelings amusing, but can’t really help them.

So, what has happened after that day? First the explosive stomach flu and high fever that ate up most of my Christmas holidays, leaving me starting the work year feeling blue and tired. Then having to pretty much handle the job of three people because of some staff changes and holidays, plus a ton of freelance work which the sickness and recuperation pushed forward. I drifted through January to the last weekend, feeling considerably less than 100% rested.

On Monday I woke up in early afternoon – the problem being that I was supposed to be at work at nine. Some retarded fan of the TV program has been texting and prank calling me so I had set the phone on silent mode for the night. I overslept the alarm clock, since it turned out I was running a fever. Cue a few angry text messages from the boss and a frantic work day done from home, running on flu medicine, tea and coffee, while letting go of the hope for going to a diving trip this week.

In the evening we got an e-mail from our landlady, where she told that she’s terminating our rent contract, since her daughter decided to move back to Finland. So we have half a year to find a new apartment. There was nothing in our contract about a minimum duration, but we kind of had the understanding that we would be interested in a long time contract, for five years or so. Well, we get half a year to look for a new apartment, so it’s not that bad – although there’s no hope in hell getting an apartment this size, this cheap and in this good a location.

Then comes yesterday evening and a ringing doorbell. A handyman came to tell us that the downstairs neighbours are a tad bit worried about a wet spot on their ceiling, with a diameter of about two meters. There’s water also on the apartment below them, but no sign of a leak in our flat. This morning a guy from water damage repairs company came to check out the situation, poking around with a cattle prod -like moisture detector and peeking at the walls with an IR camera.

So, what did he find? Well, right now a big chunk of our living room wall is missing. There’s an overpowering stench of mildew and dirt in the air and the estimate is that the repairs will take from five weeks to two months and involve ripping open an unknown amount of wall and floor. During this time the apartment is uninhabitable. The reason? The same goddamn inept handyman who had apparently molested the apartment earlier seems to have tried his hand on plumbing too, which resulted in an open pipe to the sewers being left inside the walls. So, probably a couple of tubfuls of bath-, shower- and washing machine water has leaked into the walls just during the last month or so. 

I’d really like to know who is responsible for the past renovations of the flat, since the condition of the apartment was one of the reasons why we got it so cheaply. The laths on the bottom of the walls are loose, the paint is peeling, the kitchen is badly thought out and the ceramic tiles are falling off, the plastering of the kitchen wall is less than perfect… The only saving graces of the apartment are the location and the price.

A-yup. That plugged piece of pipe was left open and it leads directly to our bathroom sewer pipes. It's the airpipe that prevents the sewers from bubbling, but still - it should be connected to SOMETHING.

A-yup. That plugged piece of pipe was left open and it leads directly to our bathroom sewer pipes. It's the airpipe that prevents the sewers from bubbling, but still - it should be connected to SOMETHING.

The bottom line is that  we’ll have to evacuate for a couple of months – after which we should move in any case. During that we should do some work from home, arrange a trip to the Egypt and I should do my daily work.

But, in the end, what can I say but World View: Confirmed.

Oh, well, we’ll probably get a replacement apartment from the insurance company for the duration of the repairs and I have agreed on a couple of showings of a new apartment. Who knows, maybe one of those will bite right away, so we’ll do a flash move next week or the week after that. Maybe we can even skip the temporary apartment hassle completely and end up in a better apartment than this.

Who knows. Maybe this balances the world for some other stroke of luck



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