Negative energy was stirred by a neighbor brushing past. After I cheerily said hello – I had my head buried in our letterbox, I heard a whiny – “Oh you live here? Well introducing oneself is obviously a thing of the past”.
This is the neighbor that repeatedly screamed at Allard through the phone a while back, applying her own special social skills, complaining about the dusty footprints on the communal stairs.
Even though I should know better, especially after spending time communicating with the landlord of our rental house or more precisely his wife; she wrinkles her mouth in disapproval when you speak with her - I am always surprised by people that choose to go through life like this.
A week ago, I had the official walk-through of the rental house – several unpleasant e-mails had already been fired at me, as I tried to get clarification as to what needed to be done to get our deposit back, which they refused to give. Instead, they brought a bailiff for ‘documentation purposes’. I had brought our project manager, for moral support more than anything – and we basically stood to one side discussing our weekend, as they did not talk to us, but instead, in silence, took pictures of everything, and I mean every little corner of the house, click, click, click, as if we had criminal intent and they were going to prove it.
At one point there were four people standing in an empty echoing room, three tapping their feet in silence, as the wife took her time to write the long list of complaints. It would have been funny, if it wasn’t so draining. We are still waiting to hear what they plan to do with our deposit of two months rent, but a complete renovation seems likely.
On the new-house front, we are happy in it, unfinished as it is. Having space to move is relaxing, after all. The first batch of empty moving boxes have been picked up, giving us more space. Now I wait for shelves to continue with the other hundred, still full but tucked away for now. I am itching to get into the seven-year-old boxes, mainly because I am convinced much can be jetted, as we say.
After a week of sending messages to my builder, asking him kindly to return (his reply each day was that we was very tired), he returned with his men; six of them in one go at first, the radio blasting along to keep them motivated as they sawed and hammered, and me sitting in a corner of my own house, running to neighborhood cafe to use the toilet. The six soon fell down to none without warning, but, now they have returned once more, as they please. And we are just happy with each advancement. "Oh, you placed the towel radiator in the bathroom today?" Eternally grateful. As financial bonuses, pleadings, moving dates, puppy deadlines and female charm have had no effect, we just keep smiling.
With the kids back at school, I sit behind my screen once more. It looks as though normal life could be imminent. Once the sawing stops, maybe.
But, oh wait, a new puppy!
I have been smelling of dog for three days now. He is here; one of the non-smelling (don't believe it) and hypo-allergenic kind (no, not the same as Obama).
Labradoodle Bali, eight weeks old, joined us three days ago and I am in the happy transition between “how am I ever going to get this puppy toilet-trained” to “how the $#**! am I ever going to get this puppy toilet-trained”. We have our moments together, when he lies under the table, resting his head on my feet, as he does now, happy to be close to me, but then there is the never-ending, not yet functioning rest of it. The children are estatic and I haven’t experienced this much spontaneous hugging in ages, so Bali is a winner. As with most things in my life, I will just muddle along, until it sort of works. The sleepless nights bring back memories of days, moving from one head-nod to another.
What a joyful bundle of farting fur, Bali is. From now on, we blame everything on the dog. Although I am not sure we weren’t in fact sold a wild-eyed rabbit in sheep’s clothing, as the above picture proves.
Undoubtedly you will hear more of Bali. I can't guarantee you won't.
With love, S1