Tag Archive for 'apartment'

Slow moving what!?

Movement, very difficult to gauge at the moment, which is pretty scary really since I am apparently moving on Monday the 28th, which yes, is just a little over a week away.

Let’s do a checklist to see what’s ready and what’s not ~

Ready:

  • Terrace – ok, that’s only ready because there is nothing to do. So there is at least one place we can safely sleep…well…..

Not ready:

  • Bedroom isn’t painted, or even ready for paint yet – this is the one room we definitely need ready, otherwise there will be nowhere to put our stuff.
  • Bedroom floor requires refinishing, booked for Friday 25th, yes, that is tight.
  • Kitchen – we removed the kitchen, so we could remove the floor because someone thought it was corner cutting time when they laid the floor.
  • Tile the kitchen – not done, and until it is done we will have a living room full of kitchen furniture.
  • Which brings me on to the living room – no change at all.
  • Lower bathroom, should be done in September if all goes well.
  • Hallway, no time to even think about that.
  • Stairs, same as above.

So although I’m not stressing, I mean, I haven’t even packed yet, I probably should be. I guess my weekend will consist of a lot of sanding, swearing, and hopefully some paint.

The walls are essentially flat, it’s just where the walls join the ceiling that all needs to be sanded back, and I discovered that I am really, really, shit at that. In fact, so shit that I just destroy all my hard work in the end. Plastering around all the windows is not my idea of a good time either. I mean, I am no plasterer, it is a trade for a reason.

We were hoping to get a plasterer in to fix it up, and on Wednesday morning we met with one. But when he saw the place he didn’t know what we were talking about and thought we’d done a great job. “Just needs a bit more sanding here and there” he said. Yes, perhaps his standards are not as high as mine, but safe to say we did not employ him to do the job.

Really hard to find someone in Germany that can do a skimming job to your walls as well.. I mean, it is essentially unheard of. People just aren’t used to smooth walls here. Smooth walls have zero value. And this guy was one of the guys that could actually do it….you can just imagine the quality of his work when he said it is completely normal to run a bead of silicone/acrylic compound down each corner where walls meet. Why? Because walls can move and crack you know!! I mean, who wants corners anyway, so 80s, I want everything rounded – EVERYTHING. Yeah, fuck that.

Anyway, baby steps. Bought yet another sander today, so I am hoping that helps. If not, I guess I will check myself into a mental institution because that’s the state I’ll be in. Anyways, without further ado, here are a couple of photos to give you a general idea of the horror we have created for ourselves:

Cause I’m a working man

No time for absolutely anything else apart from work lately. Sorry Mum and Dad, it’s not that I don’t want to talk to you!!

My weekday goes as follows (weekends I skip going in to work, instead I go directly to the new apartment:

  • Wake up as early as possible – > Go to work.
  • Finish as early as possible if having started early -> Go to new apartment.
  • Work on new apartment until it is too late, or I am in too much pain to continue -> Go home back to old apartment.
  • Eat something on the way home -> Get home, go to bed.
  • Repeat.

I will eventually create a decent post describing the exact steps we are up to. Just received a quote to get the guest bathroom done, let’s keep in mind the bathroom is about 3 meters square. The quote was for 10,000 euro. I think we might just get a second quote…..did I hear someone say Berlin was cheap? Trust me, those days are fading very quickly indeed.

Anyways, here’s a track I like a lot at the moment, it kinda gives me the feeling of the struggle I am currently dealing with, although touching on different topic matter, the struggle is the same…….as can be the sorrow….

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=szyrvlz0BVE

Summer on a hiatus…

Well, here I was thinking Summer would slowly make itself known, but the more I look around, all I see confirmation of is Winter – or Autumn at best. What have I got to look forward to this weekend then, other than the Champions League Grand Final? A high of 12 degrees celsius and a lot of rain – strangely reminiscent of Autumn – but we are already heading towards the end of May and Summer should officially be starting on the 21st of June…..oh well. Talk about an anti-climax!!

But what has been Home Sweet Homehappening? Well, Ina and I have decided to move back in with each other again. I guess we’ve been living apart for what’s coming up to two years now…..how time flies huh!? So first we were looking around at rental apartments but the market here has gone absolutely crazy. Rent is so expensive that it truly is ridiculous when you compare what the average income in Berlin is. So then we thought we’d take a look at buying a place, but again are in a tight spot – there really isn’t much available.

PIA – yes, a true pain in the ass. I mean, it’s not to say I’m not living in a great pad at the moment, because I certainly am. And I have great flatmates who I would also consider as friends, but it would still be nice to live with Ina again nevertheless. So who knows what we’ll do, buy a place, rent a place, not get a place at all????? God only knows…..

In preparation for the move though, I realized I had to get rid of quite a few things….not to mention my HUGE Carrera Bahn collection, quite a lot of which was lying around unused in the cellar. So that’s what I did, I put ads up in eBay and got rid of all the stuff. Now, I must mention, ever since moving to this country I have minimized my experience with eBay. It just seems to be more trouble than it’s worth most of the time. Germans are still somewhat of an anomaly to me, quite a lot of them take everything so seriously and are so unrelaxed and passive aggressive that it really forces me to take a look back in history. When I do, I have a much better understanding of why some of the atrocities that have occurred to this country in the past did, and why the majority were most likely justified (Ok, that’s harsh, but it’s my blog and I can say that if I want to!). It probably also accounts for the fact that Germany has one of the lower life expectancies of the EU at 77 years of age. Being so up tight, aggressive and unrelaxed is not a good thing for one’s health.

An example: I sent a person 6 corner pieces of Carrera track only for them to leave a negative comment under my username. Keep in mind, I have been an eBay member since 2004 and have NEVER received a negative comment. This person has been a member since the end of last year (2012) and has purchased from a total of 3 sellers. So instead of following the rules, after the negative comment they left me as a seller, this user has now written me an e-mail and is essentially holding me ransom to a resolution to their purchase. Their purchase, that was obviously damaged by the post and also repackaged by the post of which I had insurance on. Their condition, to refund otherwise the negative comment will remain. Well, news for all those who don’t know, friendliness goes a long way when attempting to reconcile a situation. I don’t take lightly to threats, and if this person dealt with the issue in a professional, polite, adult manner, I would have been more than happy to offer some type of resolution, but acting in this way does not help them. By leaving a negative comment they have closed the sale. On principle alone I have a hard time reacting at all.

Don’t get me wrong, this type of person is not the norm in Germany, but the frequency of this type of person is higher here than anywhere I know of. There is a lot of passive aggression going on, a lot. And if you would like to see examples of active aggression, you just have to jump in a car, on a motorbike or even a bicycle for that matter. I can guarantee that within 30 mins you will experience some type of aggressive behavior.

So to sum up, this type of crap as well as the crap weather makes one occasionally feel like crap……just like I do now. Anyway, not all is bad and I try not to let these type of people get me down. Kneeling Chair

Another thing that is trying to rob my soul of its inner good vibes is my damn right elbow. I guess I’m starting to get quite a bad case of tennis elbow. So now that my back is feeling pretty damn good I run straight into this new problem…..like WTF!? What have I done to deserve this? I mean, it could be related to my back because I changed my office chair to one of those kneeling chair things which obviously changed the posture I have whilst at my desk. And I guess since I work so much I am at my desk quite a lot. I don’t know……what I do know is that it really hurts.

And that’s the rant for now anyway, I mean, I have a plentiful supply, but too much negativity makes one feel negative, so I’m giving up and letting go. Have a great weekend everyone!!

 

Prenzlauer Berg (not really much of a mountain)

So, on Friday I left work at midday and boxed all my crap up that was spread over two apartments (Kreuzberg and Friedrichshain) and organized a bunch of friends to get together on Saturday to move my sorry ass over to Prenzlauer Berg. One word – it was amazing! I couldn’t believe how quickly it all happened. I was expecting a full days worth of work – but it was done in just a few hours. I mean, by noon Saturday I was staring in disbelief at all my crap in my room in my new apartment……I really was rather shocked. We then went around the corner for some pizza and beer and a bit of good cheer…..the beers just kept flowing (hmmm, is that fortunate or unfortunate – I’m not sure) and the day/night just continued on. Went to Mauerpark and then ended up in a sushi restaurant somewhere not too far away (but really quite good) to get some much needed sustenance (between all those beers) and finally some random bar in a park God knows where chatting away to the guy that runs the place whilst listening to some very minimal minimal 😉

I have to mention a few lucky things from that day:

  • All the friends I asked to help turned up (thanks guys!!)
  • The weather was perfect – it couldn’t have been better
  • We got parking spots directly out the front of my new building – talk about lucky

So I guess you could consider all things combined to be a good omen. My new apartment is really nice, and although I haven’t had much time to hang with my new flatmates (I’m always at work or out), they seem really cool. The only thing I really have to get onto is getting my room into some kind of order – it is an absolute mess at the moment, boxes of crap everywhere – God. I was starting to get onto it last night with the hopes that I could get my desk built – but I ended up just playing musical chairs with boxes and getting the basic layout done before meeting up with a friend for a beer or two. So – this weekend I can hopefully get a lot of it done – although there are a few things I’d like to go to as well. Grrrrr. I probably shouldn’t be going to anything though considering how freaking broke I am 🙁

Prenzlauer Berg is a massive change from either Kreuzberg or Friedrichshain, it is very clean and pretty but at the same time has heaps of things around – nice cafés and bars – I mean, KulturBrauerei is just down the road which is kinda cool. A lot of good bands play there regularly. It’s funny though, most of my friends live either in Friedrichshain or Kreuzberg, so moving here was a little worrying to start with…but I guess I’m getting the hang of it. A major advantage is that there is hardly any broken glass around – already this year I think I’ve had about 7 or 8 flat tires on my bike – so hopefully this will reduce that amount rather significantly 🙂

So that’s the news – oh, it was my wedding anniversary on Wednesday, I thought it was going to be a bit of a sad day for me (for us?), but Ina and I met up and had a very nice dinner at dos palillos. It’s a very strange situation really, I mean, as far as we’ve discussed together, and from what I understand (and feel) I think we both want to be friends and try to rekindle the love we had for one another (the love that I helped destroy), but I don’t know the rules to that. How often are we meant to meet etc. It’s all very confusing. I am most definitely confused. I wonder if Ina is thinking the same – maybe I should just ask her……..

p.s. Gonna check out this mini performance art festival at Hebbel Am Ufer with a friend tomorrow night….might be a bit of fun….you should come along if you’re in the area! Testing Stage