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December 17, 2010

From Proverbs to Suburbs

How does life end up getting so busy?  The problem is that when we get busy, life turns into a cycle in which we get continually more busy.  We get so busy that we don't even have time to think about what's going.  Sometimes it takes a major event, usually in the form of some unfortunate trauma, for us to realize what our lives have become.  In my case, it was the end of a dear friend - power.  'Taking it for granted' has haunted my living dreams the past few days.

So, here's the story:

I walk home from school, tired and ready to eat.  As I walk up the stairs I hear my roommates arguing (not unusual, although sometimes I think that's just how they talk to each other).  My thoughts of making lunch are dashed as I realize that my roommates mother is probably using every utensil, device, and square inch of counter space.  This is a weekly ritual in which she prepares all her sons meals for the coming week.  Little do I know that more dreams are about to be dashed.  

I walk through the door, and all my roommates turn to me and say "we have a problem."  Never has anything sounded so horrible, until the next four words, "we have no power."  Apparently, the landlord recently divorced, and the electricity was under the name of his wife.  His wife turned off the power, and no one changed the account, nor notified us.  It's a fantastic system.  So, after several frenzied phone calls, we got the good news - the electric company will be here within 5 days.  So I asked, "are those business days?"  Sparking another frenzied call.  "No, business days."  The result is that we will have up to one week without fridge, microwave, hot water, light, internet, (man I would have settled for Mario's mother hogging the kitchen, but as I found it, it gets worse) no antimosquitos.  I know you don't know what that is, but just imagine being bit by mosquitos all night long.

So, there we were.  And, what do we do next?  Fight.  Well, not me, or my venezuelan roommate Mario.  But, the woman from Barcelona starts getting heated, in typical spanish style.  In my estimation she is completely correct.  My french-lebanese roommate then proceeds to tell her to shut up.  Mario and I sit transfixed, watching as the drama unfolds.  They yell back and forth, saying things that I wouldn't translate, even if I knew how.  Suffice it to say that there was a lot "whore's mothers" being thrown around (also very typical spanish).

Once this is all done, we each find our own seperate fixes.  Able (the frenchie) left and bought the longest extension chords he could find.  They currently go from the top floor of our building, across the courtyard, and in through our kitchen window.  It is used to power the fridge, water heater, and Able's computer/internet.  I spent the night on the couch of my friend, the lifesaver.  While there I noticed that her apartment had none of the flaws that mine had.  It was then that I had my first proverbial moment, "No todo lo que brilla es oro" (not all that glitters is gold).  I was so in love when I found my place.  Old, historic, and right in the center of town.  It has now been replaced by old, decrepit, drafty, and in the center of all the noise.  You may be thinking 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder,' but I can handle things one at a time, but all together is a completely different story.

So, I began to look at moving.  After all 'antes que te cases, mira lo que haces' (look before you leap).  And, I found a few dozen places with exactly what I was looking for.  Someplace a little more modern, out of the way, and with less roommates.  So, it looks like I am a suburbs kind of guy after all.  Well, maybe not entirely, but I'm not a center of the city kind of guy.  

I'll keep you posted on what I find.

1 comment:

  1. Whore's mother. I need to use that. Thanks, friend.