Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Rainy season begins

Rainy day transport
North American and European winters are cold. The water falls from the sky in shivery drops that soak the skin or icy tears that pile up in white drifts. Some people really like the change of seasons.

I'm not one of them. I spent my childhood in Winnipeg where minus 35-40oF/C is not uncommon in January or February. I've had about as much snow, ice, and freezing temperatures as I can stand.

So I'm happy to be in Bandung where wet season means similar temperatures all year around even when the rain pours down in torrents once or twice a day. If you get soaked, you don't feel like you've landed in the refrigerator.

Rain-dancing with a squeegee
We have rain inside the house as well as outside. We're trying to contact our landlord who is mysteriously not taking calls. During the downpours, water sheets down the walls and drips from the ceiling in several rooms. My husband bought a long-handled 2-foot-wide floor squeegee so he can move the inches of water from the tiles through the door to outside. Obviously several rooms are not habitable.

But we weren't able to live in those rooms anyways. Not only is there rain inside, but there are migrating termites (that look like flying ants) as well as white larvae inside several ceilings. Several kitchen doors had to be removed (smell and destruction) and the cutlery drawer falls off its glides when we open it. The covered porch is losing its eaves, crumbling down under the rain and termites, so we haven't been able to sit there either.

We were pleased when the landlord hired someone to fix things. About halfway through the house, he said that was enough. Too much money? We are paying a generous rent a year in advance. So we are back to slapping to death the flying termites migrating back to the refinished part of the house. It needs a whole-house extermination company.

Beautiful people: a grandma and
granddaughter on the angkot
That said, we like the place and signed a 2-year lease. Therefore we'll be fixing it up. The repair bill will come off next year's lease payment. Sadly, it's going to cost the landlord much more than he could have fixed it for. We will, according to our contract, add rental time equal to the the amount of house we can't yet use, and it's been 3 months. We'll likely be charged more for ceiling replacement and extermination services as bul├ęs (European-style foreigners). Might not be the smartest way for the landlord to save money ... but that's what he's choosing for himself. Sigh.

Anyhow, the rain is warm, the people in Bandung are friendly, and the food is wonderful. We've met so many new friends. We love the city and are happy to be here.

Got a Bandung story to share? We'd love to hear it.

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