Monday, September 18, 2006

The landlady's husband showed up around 6 pm, stinking of vodka. I pointed that out to him and he was smart enough to turn around and leave, without trying to enter the apartment.

The landlady came some 15 minutes later, with a new pipe. My mother was here, so she opened the door and told the landlady about the drunk husband's visit. The landlady burst out complaining, said she couldn't bear it any longer - but couldn't divorce him, either. Then she left to find a plumber.

She returned with a neighbor - there's a plumber in every apartment here, but none is available right now, she said. The guy sweated quite literally over (and under) the damn pipe/sink/drawers mess for about an hour, discovering in the process that the cold water pipe was about to burst, too, so he replaced it. The landlady asked me to give him 20 hryvnias ($4) when he was done, and I was happy to.

But if you think I have hot water now, you're wrong: I don't - because a pipe burst at the dormitory next door and they switched off hot water to everyone again today, trying to locate the damage and digging with the same old excavator again, in yet another spot. When it's gonna be back is anyone's guess.


The landlady cleaned the kitchen and washed the floor after the neighbor left, and I warmed up to her somewhat, and asked why she didn't pack up and leave to work in Portugal with her son, joining her relatives there and freeing herself from the alcoholic idiot. She said she was considering it - the husband gets drunk every day, and he doesn't keep silent, either, and sometimes, he's pretty violent, too, scares the shit out of their 12-year-old boy. I sympathized with her - up until she mentioned that she'd rent out this apartment to someone when she leaves Ukraine - at which point I began to sympathize with those future tenants...

Had to give her 10 hryvnias ($2) for the way back home... I mean, back to their dacha...

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