about the apartment

I live at the top of a seven-floor walk-up apartment. (It’s actually eight floors if you count from the ground floor English-style.) It’s a miniscule two-room chambre de bonne (maids’ quarters, which is what they were originally) and the shower is in the kitchen and the toilet is down the hall. I share it with a 26-year-old girl from Russia, dorm-style.

There are tons of advantages to living on the very top floor: I always get exercise, there’s no noise coming from above, rats and stuff usually can’t make it up there, and the view is absolutely gorgeous– a sea of Parisian rooftops, and if you stick your head out the window and look to the left or right you’ll see the Sacré-Coeur or the Tour Eiffel.

However, the piping is kind of strange. We have two sinks in the kitchen– one for dishes, one for toothbrushing– and the shower in the corner. I think they all share the same drainpipe; whenever one sink runs for too long, the other two get backed up. And seeing bulate-infested drain water bubbling up from the shower drain is enough to discourage anyone from bathing for a while. (Bulate is a word in Tagalog meaning worm-like microbes… I think. I have no idea how to translate it.)

So yeah. I haven’t taken a shower in about a week. I’m beginning to gross myself out, but gahhhh the bubbling shower drain will be in my nightmares for ages.


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This is a blog of things place-related, by a cash-strapped Stanford grad who's lived in various places and writes about life. She's currently looking for a job in Manhattan or the Bay Area.

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