Friday, 15 August 2014
Apartments in Hell
Seems easy enough. Sell the house you're living in and rent 'an apartment' until you decide where you want to relocate. Nothing too fancy, just a place to hang out for maybe six months while you check things out and about. Grab the newspaper and go to rentals. Not much there because everybody has a program online to find your perfect spot:
and of course .craigslist.ca everybody's favorite.
Confusing to say the least. Most are a jumble of rooms, houses, apartments, condos and basement suites tumbling one after the other. Minimal descriptions. Vague references about size and amenities plus indications that parking, laundry facilities etc.are an added cost.
The first few apartments looked at were at least clean. Very tiny one bedroom units and two bedroom units crammed into 600 square feet. Blurting out that the second bedroom makes for a good storage area doesn't seem to impress landlords.
Our last visit was the best. From the Google street view the older type building appeared reasonable and clean. After parking and approaching the rental office, the true picture began to emerge like a gathering tornado from afar and fast moving. The exterior of the building likely hasn't been touched in thirty years and the growing moss layers seem to hold it together despite the rotted out corners and missing siding. Stepping into the building was an assault on the nasal passages and negotiating a path along the carpet? - between unknown stains and the duct taped seams - required careful route finding. Most of the wall sconces were dangling but they at least distracted one from contemplating the the unwashed walls. Best one could say about the unit was the replacement wood floors as the original carpet must have deteriorated into thin air. Kitchen cabinets made in a grade school wood shop held together by multiple coats of paint. Back out to the hallway and the ever presence of mildew wafting through the air.
Time to go but wait there's more. Would you like a look at the indoor pool? Why not? Maybe an upside exists for this hovel. Not so easy to gain entry even for the manager as the keys stick and the combination key pad only deigns to work after the third try. Once in, lo and behold, a concrete hole in the ground filled with heavily chlorinated water (maybe) and not a lively color or decoration in sight. After a quick peak at the dry saunas, it's finally time to leave, except the door has locked and none of the keys work from the inside. Not to worry another exit exists where it still took a couple of minutes of jiggling keys to free us.
We took the proffered application just in case we need a scratch pad on the way home.