SETTLING IN: Day 50, Friday October 18, 2013

Well now this is the point where I really was starting to settle in to my new home and job. You can tell because this is the first journal entry where I really had nothing new to say! It might sound boring, but really it was a big milestone, it marks the beginning of when our little apartment started to become home. I still miss that place with it’s long thick luxurious curtains that blocked out virtually all light, and the porch like section off the main bedroom that had lots of windows and laundry lines that ingeniously cranked up and down. Katrina used to say they’d make great seats, but I don’t think they were quite weight bearing enough. We had no dryer, just a machine that we never figured out how to program properly, and had a tendency to stretch out or tear anything we washed in it. At least our clothes got clean! I remember a story our TESOL teacher told us so many years ago in that overheated classroom where we spent two weekends cramming in way too much information. She said when she was first overseas in Korea she’d noticed that the detergent she was using on her clothes smelled lovely but didn’t seem to clean things very well. Turned out she’d been buying fabric softener! It was because of that story that we were so careful at checking labels (we could usually find one item with English, and we could compare the characters with other items).

In our guest bedroom, which ended up doubling as a storage area as we had no closets (our apartment in Toronto where we’re living now seems very luxurious indeed because it has four closets!), there was a wide window sill which became a favourite writing perch. The sun would come in through there and I could see the park out the back when I looked down. We had no elevator so stairs were our only option. Not too bad though since we were only on the fourth floor. As the days turned to months we collected paintings, souvenirs, and city maps, each of these additions making our walls more unique and our place more us.

Our bathroom was pretty nasty. We went through three toilet seats (at least we had a sit toilet) while we were living there as they were all so cheaply made they’d crack, and our shower drain had a nest of flies that never quite went away no mater how much vinegar we poured down there. The hair build up from the previous tenant was disgusting, and because I started loosing hair from who knows what my own quickly replaced theirs. The shower had no door, it was just a shower head, and a drain on the floor. The whole bathroom was tile. Everything got wet when you showered, but at least it kind of cleaned the place at the same time… sort of…

Our stove was some sort of gas stove, and it had only two settings, which were: tiny flame that heated up only the centre of your pan, or RAGING INFERNO! It made cooking an adventure every time.

Yes it had it’s ups and downs (door handle broke, and pipe under the sink wasn’t even connected when we first moved in so all the water poured into the cupboard, which soon after developed blotchy black mold) but it was our home, and our first apartment together, and we loved it for all it’s faults. Seems strange to think of anyone else living there. Oh well hopefully it’s someone else’s home now.

Aright that’s all for now, if you have any questions about China or topics you would like to hear more about please post them in the comments and I will answer them when I have more short or nonexistent blog posts like this.

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