Monday, September 04, 2006

Hot water update:

After spending all Thursday digging and polluting the air with that stinky excavator, the workers didn't show up on Friday at all. Not surprising: hangover caused by the last day of summer, or perhaps they were waiting for the new pipes to arrive. No activity yesterday, but to work on Saturday is a sin, isn't it. Then, in the evening, we go outside, and the basement door is open, and there's this smell coming from downstairs: very damp, as if someone had been taking a very hot shower for at least a week, using dirty water and no soap or shampoo, and keeping the door shut all that time. We asked the neighbors and learned that those idiots dug everything up because it was the only way for them to find the pipe that burst. They didn't find it, despite all the damage they caused to the playground and its environs. And then on Saturday, hot water was found in our basement, so much of it, you could basically swim down there. Well, not that much, but up to our neighbor's knees, we were told. No one seems to have any idea how the water got there. And they've been threatening to turn the cold water off. And there's no hot water in the rest of the buildings now, two or three of them that had it all this time.

Our landlady is originally from Western Ukraine and has relatives in Portugal and Italy. They call this number every once in a while, asking for her. I assume that, as most other Ukrainians - tens of thousands of them, right? or millions? - they work abroad illegally. Now, I'm not one of those Ukrainians who like to preach how bad and immoral it is to live anywhere but in Ukraine - and who live elsewhere themselves. But this no-hot-water situation has gotten so desperate, I feel like screaming: dear governments of Portugal and Italy, please deport all those wonderful Ukrainian construction workers, etc., as soon as possible, because these motherfuckers who've stayed only know how to drink and curse, it seems, and they'd sooner tear our building down than find where the fucking leak is! Please send our skilled ones back!

I'm kidding, of course. Almost.

The kids love this mess, by the way. They are running around the pits and mounds, chasing each other, playing war, and they've also found clay there and are making sculptures. It's not 100 percent bad, you see.

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