December 16, 2009

Moving House (As the British Say)


No gmail access (and thus no access) for two days combined with a move equals me being behind in blogging. At least, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

We moved over the last of our stuff this morning before work. This on the heels of a huge Ikea run and a grocery run, in addition to more crap then we thought we owned. And we haven't bought anything since we've been here, so why was there so much stuff?

Let's recap: We signed for an apartment we said we didn't want. It took us three days after the lease began to get keys. ("I've lost them. No, I have them. No, I've lost them. We need to call the locksmith. Come another time.) The apartment flooded on the fourth day. We started to move on the fifth day, by which time the inch-plus of water covering the floor had been cleaned up. More moving yesterday. This morning we moved out of the hotel. Now we just have to unpack -- and there's nowhere to put anything.

The apartment is furnished, so I was able to get most of the things we needed in one long Ikea trip. But just because a place has furniture doesn't mean it's move-in ready. So I shopped for sheets and towels and blankets and pillows and dishes and silverware and glasses and pots. We have the bare necessities now. And bear in mind I have no storage, so the necessities really are bare.

Today I picked up the laundry -- all that new linen had to be washed, and we have a machine but no dryer -- and tonight we'll sleep there.


The laundry episode was a bit amusing. When I dropped it off on Monday, it was all still in the package. The laundry guy didn't seem to mind. We were lucky to discover (OK, it's not luck -- we asked around) a laundry right behind the office, making it quite convenient. Our new place is in an entirely residential area, making it nice and quiet, but less convenient for getting things done.

So I drop off the laundry and I ask the guy does he want me to take everything out of the packages. No, he says, no problem. "No problem" is a mantra here. Nothing is ever a problem (especially, I imagine, if you have a lot of dirhams). We count the things: 6 pillow cases, four sheets, a comforter cover, four bath towels, four hand towels. Done.

He asks my name. I say Leah. He says two days. I say Wednesday? He looks at the calendar and says yes. I say do I need a receipt? Some sort of paper? No problem, he says. I say you'll remember me? Yes, he says. No problem.

I returned today, and found the laundry, like so many small shops, is closed from 1-4. Sometimes even until 5. My third trip out side, I discover he's finally open. I walk in. He says Leah! I say hello. He says six pillow cases, four sheets, eight towels and goes in search of something under a table. Out he comes with my laundry, nicely packed and stacked in a re-usable shopping bag.

I'm pleased it's all there. I'm pleased he remembered me. I'm surprised, too. But sort of not. This often seems to be the way things work here. Mysteriously.

We hadn't discussed price yet. Fifty-two dirhams he says to me. I fork it over. All my linens washed, dried and ironed for $14.

No comments: