Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Upon my return to Edinburgh I went to the tourist centre and got myself checked into a lovely hotel where, it turns out, the owners also have rooms for rent.


I checked out two of them. The first was small but decent. The house itself was pretty cramped and gross, but it was £240/month including utilities which is cheap enough for me to overlook the cramped and gross aspect.

The second place had a big kitchen (mmm) and a much bigger room, but then Landlord Michael realized he'd promised that room to someone else already, but I could have her room which was also tiny. But the place itself was nice, full of people about my age and they seemed social. But I couldn't move in there until the end of the month. Slight problem.

I decided to keep looking until I left the hotel -- I was spending two nights there (luxury!), and my deal was that if I didn't find somewhere by the time I left the hotel then I'd have to stay in a hostel until I did. That was my motivation. And it worked.

I checked out another place this morning. I called the landlady yesterday... If you've seen Bend It Like Beckham think of the sister, how she spoke quickly and ended all her sentences with "you know," or "all right" or similar, and then make her talk twice as fast and lose any ability to read her lips (what with the phone and all) and you have a sense of this woman. I didn't understand much of anything she said (something about people moving out because of some bad thing but one person's staying and I didn't really understand, but it sounded bad), but managed to grasp that I could see the place today at 11am.

And I went. I met the one person who's staying and I really liked her. She's friendly and cool and funny. And then I met the landlady and ooh I didn't like her. My interview lasted all of three minutes and when I said it was more than I wanted to spend (£300/month plus £300 deposit) she kicked me out. I didn't even get a chance to say goodbye to the other woman. Sheesh. The place was in a kind of seedy neighborhood.

I thought for a long time on the way back, but I really only had one option if I wanted to move in today, so I took the first apartment.

And it's nice. And he even knocked £10 off the rent. Landlord Michael rules. My room is nice but the rest of the place continues to be a sty. I've met one other person living there, and she... seems a little standoffish. She has internet, though, so I'm hopeful. I really enjoy her husband, who is vacationing here for a few weeks. He's hilarious.

I went out to get things for my room -- bedding, mostly, since all I had on my bed was a gross pink fitted sheet and two pillows that are, by definition, pillows, but not, by definition, bed pillows. One's a throw pillow and one's a cushion. Came back with a shade for the bare bulb hanging from the ceiling, a lamp, lighbulbs for said lamp, a package containing a duvet, pillow, mattress protector and pillow protector (?), a fitted sheet and a pillowcase, and flowers. I couldn't find a duvet cover for under £15, and couldn't find a non-stained one for under £20.

So. I can't get the shade on the bulb because it's too high, the bulbs are wrong for the lamp (even though the workers told me they were right), the mattress protector was not, in fact, the mattress pad I was expecting, I managed to spill the flower water all over my dresser, and then my computer screen wouldn't work.

And I laughed. Until I started crying.

I got my computer to work, but everything else is in mild shambles. Hopefully tomorrow's food-gathering session will go better than the room-gathering of today.

Now off to a different bar where I will hopefully catch up with the Texans and bartenders I hung out with last night. More on that later.

P.S. I love this bar. They have free wireless internet. Ahhh.

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