Monday 6th July – Wednesday 8th July – 7 months, 20-22 days
The score so far:
Airconditioner – we know this one already but let’s put it in – Fixed, near enough’s good enough – so far $0.00. Tradespeople don’t charge, their companies do. But I don’t know the name of these guys or their company or even where it is located; I tried to pay them after they’d done, and they said they’d return later to check it was working and I could pay then. That was five days ago. I presume they’ll turn up and demand payment eventually. I think it’s reasonable to presume this’ll be less than the $120.00 I paid to have the airconditioner uninstalled, moved and reinstalled by the first lot of idiots pretending to be airconditioner repairblokes (they were the ones who broke it! Fools!).
Electricity – A whole day spent sitting on my verandah and $544.75 later, that’s US, that’s five hundred and forty-four dollars and seventy-five cents people, I have SIX power points now instead of ONE, SIX COUNT THEM SIX MUAHAHAHA I AM POWERPOINT RICH IF CASH POOR, and the assurance that all the wiring is safe (and I can’t see any electrical tape or bare wires anywhere so I’ll believe them). It is rather good not just being able to have the powerpoints all around the flat MUAHAHA THE POWERPOINTS but also not tripping over cords in the doorway of the room next to the bathroom. (The bathroom floor is always wet – bak mandis are designed that way – and although there is a door on the antechamber, there is no door on the bathroom, so you can see why an electrician was necessary.)
Rent – You were feeling sorry for me about the aircon and the electricity still, weren’t you? Don’t feel too bad – although my landlord hasn’t bothered to offer to pay for the electricity work, she is very keen to buy my airconditioner. So she said I don’t have to pay rent this month if I’ll leave the airconditioner when I go. So, $0.00 rent and I think in my last month here, since she also wants to buy my furniture, I’ll tell her she can have it all for a similar deal or discount on the rent. Hehe.
Gas stove – Last week, after I got the gas stove working again with a refilled bottle, I got sick while using it and suspected it had a gas leak. So I haven’t been able to use it for a week and a half. This didn’t look like getting fixed at all since the idiots at Hotel Dili (where you get your gas fixed, der) said I would have to bring the stove in myself... and I don’t have a car... etc. But one of my lovely neighbours had to go to Hotel Dili herself today, and offered to take me and the stove. Cost to get it fixed (they tightened a loose bit and now it doesn’t seem to leak): $1.00.
So, especially with my new powerpoints (hurrah! Hurrah!) I am feeling rather awesome this week. There has been a lot of cross-cultural communication, waiting, sitting in the heat getting bitten by mozzies, more cross-cultural communication, patience and general wondering if I am paying people to actually do something that will last.
But now it seems I have all the major stuff done, so that makes me very happy (fingers crossed, godDAMN you don’t know how much I don’t wanna jinx myself there). I still need a new surge box – about $40 – I could still get the lights fixed (apparently it’s the fitting not the light) but that would have to be done by the happy chargers at Tam Electrics, and I think I’ll save up before I call them again. Plus the lights have been working ok for a couple of days. And, finally, I need to get my phones checked – apparently they’re not receiving all calls from Australia, which is a worry, but hopefully can be sorted out. Oh and the prank phone call idiots. But they never worried me and they haven’t called for a few days anyway. I’m leaving the plumbing of my flat alone – the water does work most days and crap water pressure is not a dangerous thing to live with anyway.
So, my flat is cool-ish, I can cook in my kitchen AND my antechamber (that’s where the fridge and stove live) without tripping over cords, and I don’t have a 6 outlet powerboard dangling above my bedhead anymore. It is MARVELLOUS.