Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Do-over
P.S. I would have put photos of the apartments from the rental sites, but the apartments looked nothing like the photos so it would have been just more false advertising.

Today I don't think that one single thing that I tried to do with the kids in the apprentice class went over well. I couldn't get the film to work. The volume was too low. The English was too complicated. They didn't enjoy the games. Finally the one guy who speaks fluent English and used to be a teacher gave me some pointers on how to engage them in English by getting them to talk about their lives. It turned out that almost everyone spoke more English than they had let on in the beginning so we passed the rest of the time that way. I tried my best. I really did. I got up at 5 AM and by the time the class ended at 1 PM, I was ready to pass out.

Two hours later I went to meet Claudia the real estate agent. We got along well at the beginning of the house hunt. By the end, I am pretty sure she hated me. I was mad at the fact that the apartment I had my heart set on is right in front of a giant construction site that she didn't say anything about. And that she seemed to think it was not a big deal. If it's not a big deal you go live there and I'll take your giant apartment in the quiet courtyard. The one apartment that we saw that is at all possible is a fixer upper with landlords who are far away and want nothing to do with being landlords. It is the kind of set up that might work in America, but that I think is too scary to try here. F was game for it, but he is uber optimistic. Then again, he also sleeps through the music and everything else while I lie there staring at the ceiling.

It turns out that our rental contract says that we have to give three months notice and the longer we wait to give notice the more we will have to pay out. Also, the sooner we give notice, the sooner I will spend every minute of my life opening the doors for rental agents so that they can see this apartment.

So far I have seen an apartment that must have first been a brothel, one that is an amusement park for rodents and insects, one through whose cracks in the wall you could see the sky, and lastly, the fixer upper which is missing a water tank and which is covered in about five inches of grime from the workmen who put in the outdoor glass elevator. I made a comment, in my exasperation, about my willingness to enter an Italian elevator. The elevator is in a tiny court that no one knows about. The agent assured me that the family above would eventually come save me from the glass coffin ala Sleeping Beauty, but I prefer not to test out her theory. I realized too late that I shouldn't have specified that it was Italian elevators that I hate since it is all elevators. If I'm being honest I would rather get stuck in an American one, alright? There I said it. Call me whatever.

I have to go now to teach the new student who is disappointed to meet me for the first time because she wanted to have an English teacher with a British accent. I know, I know. I am tempted, if that is what you are thinking, but I am probaby too tired to pull off seven weeks of speaking with a British accent. Damn you, beer man.

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