Sunday, February 08, 2004

The last time I forget my keys

It's been a crazy week and I haven't been near a computer but there's been no shortage of bloggable material.

The biggest events of the week have been starting work and moving in to my new place. The latter was preceeded by a great deal of cleaning. The bathroom was the worst and I had to go at the grease (someone used to cook in there) with a metal scraper before I could start with a cloth.

Yesterday was the final day of cleaning (12 hours!) and as I reached out to clean the exterior of the windows (and dropped yet another sponge) I smelt Nepali food from the next room and hoped I would get to know the neighbours soon. My room is in a flat divided into four residences.

I turned to refill my bucket of water from the shower and as I turned it on the hose came out from the water pipe. Hardened against such minor disappointments, I decided to go downstairs to get a spanner (I'm becoming quite a plumber) and retrieve the latest fallen sponge.

I went down in my wet t-shirt and shorts and picked the sponge off the street. It was freezing cold and people looked at me like I was crazy. I borrowed a spanner from Daisy in the shop below (my new best friend) and as I turned towards my door I realised I had left the keys in the room.

My real estate agent (next to Daisy's store) was closed and I have no idea of my landlords phone number. I hovered around the door shivering before the Chinese family next door but one came back home. Thankfully they had seen me before and took me for more than just a crazed foreigner in a wet clothes and thongs blabbing about a key and a room in terrible Cantonese.

I went up with them and knocked on the door next to my place. A Nepali girl answered and got very confused by me soaking wet and shivering and explaining in Hindi that I wanted to climb out her bathroom window.

So I got back in my place and I also bonded in a special way with my neighbours. More than that, I am now a renowned lunatic among the women who sit at the bottom of the starcases in the nearby buildings. There was much pointing and excited yelling as I climbed around the exterior of the building into my bathroom.

I'm glad that I fit in well with the general insanity of Temple St. I just wish the stall below my room would stop playing 'You light up my life' repeatedly between 5pm and 1am every night. The lines 'you light up my life' (I still don't have blinds) and 'you fill my nights with song' are so apt it is like a cruel taunt.

This isn't my photo but you get an idea of my desparate need for blinds!