If the contracted help shows up we tonight should be able to get the remainder of my stuff out of my old apartment. For the past week or so, most days have seen at one least one load of small boxes carted over to a friend’s apartment near Phuket Zoo. He’s offered to store my belongs for free until I find a new place. At least my possessions will be secure.
The offered vehicle for the larger items was originally promised for yesterday afternoon but never arrived. This was arranged by my ex-wife. Although she now lives in Nakhon Sri Thammarat, somehow she’d heard through the grapevine that I was moving and needed some help. She called out of the blue telling me that her daughter, who now works on Naiharn Beach, has a “car” (presumably a pickup truck), and would be happy to lend a hand. I was told she’d be over around seven or eight tonight…
Once I quit the apartment on Chaofa West Road, I’ll be officially homeless. I do have an offer to stay temporarily at my friend’s apartment, sleeping on the floor. It’s a much better option than trying to find a super-cheap guesthouse on this island. The least expensive room I could find near “civilization” was the historic On-On Hotel in Phuket Town. This was the first hotel established in the province, back in 1929. It stood-in for Leonardo di Caprio’s Khao San Road digs in “The Beach” and also appeared in a miniseries about the Boxing Day Tsunami. I was actually looking forward to staying there at least a night or two just for the experience (and potential blog material) and may still do so at some point. Someone told me that the Rawai Condotel, near Laguna Nightclub in the southern reaches of Phuket, had rooms for rent at 2,500 baht per month. But when we inquired there a few nights ago I was quoted 4,500 baht for a fan room and 6,500 baht for one with air-conditioning (I don’t need the latter).
My current plan is to take my friend up on his offer for several days (a week at most) — he has cable television, hot water, and wireless internet so it will be luxury I haven’t experienced in several years — while making a last-ditch effort at Phuket schools and cheap apartments. If I haven’t found anything definitive at the end of a week I’ll hop aboard a bus for Hat Yai. Supposedly, Songkhla Province has plenty of job opportunities for native English speakers but doesn’t have the hoards competing for the same jobs as Phuket has. Rents and other living costs are also said to be much less than Phuket (although I still believe one can find pockets of dirt-cheap but livable places on the island).
I don’t know if it’s a bad omen or a sign that I’ve made the right decision in leaving this place but the first thing I saw this morning was a dead rat in the hallway. It was fairly gross (although I did snap a photo to show the landlord). I felt nobody else would clean it up so I swept it up into a trash bag and threw it into the roadside garbage bin. I take pride in keeping my home clean and it irks me that my neighbors don’t feel the same way, thus the problem with cockroaches and other critters in the public areas. As the water hasn’t been working reliably for quite some time, the roaches (and they are a giant Asian variety — every more frightening than the New York version) come up through the empty pipes from time to time.
The first night I stayed in this building back on Halloween night in 2008 I’d brought some things over and then left for another load. When I turned the light on upon my return there were roaches everywhere — I spent an hour or more removing them. I haven’t had much of a problem since but you still get the odd one in the restroom (I had my first in more than a month just a couple of nights ago). Ants are also a problem from time to time — I was making a peanut butter & jam sandwich the other night and by the time I’d finished spreading the peanut butter on the bread, the still open lid was covered in tiny red and brown ants. One or two had climbed into the jar itself and I had to dig those guys out! I store what food I can in the dorm-size refrigerator. Mosquitoes are rarely a problem inside despite me keeping the front window open the majority of the days and nights. There’s no telling if I’ll have such problems in my next home but I believe if the inside is clean then any that are around will be attracted to the messes made by the neighbors…
Of course, since it is “moving day,” the skies are overcast and every indication is that we’re going to have a real blower of a storm this afternoon/evening. But if I don’t get out of here tonight, there’s always tomorrow and the next day. I do hope we have clear skies tomorrow as the U.S. Navy League is holding their annual American Independence Day celebration and I intend to get over there and partake of some barbecue and hot dogs!
Daily Writing Totals:
This Article – 898 words
Total Today — 898 words