Despite feeling lousy with a cold i decided i needed to get out the house this morning and went round with a friend of mine who was flat hunting.
The 1st laugh was when we tried to direct a taxi downtown. The problem being... I have totally lost my voice so couldn't direct the driver, my friend doesn't have arabic so the pronunciation was slightly off and the driver was totally deaf!!!!!! To crown it all- he took one look at us 'tourists?!!!' and made the automatic assumption that we weren't saying 'Babaloq', we were actually saying 'khan el Khalili' ! Because of course where else in this city would we want to go anyway? If it hadn't been so funny I might have strangled him (joking!)
4 different estate agents, 4 flats later... nothing yet- but more to see tomorrow. It's hard looking when you know that the prices get hiked up for foreigners. Frustrating.
The other thing is that the landlords are not satisfied with demanding silly high rent prices from you- they also feel they have a right to tell you how to live your life within 'their' flat you are paying so much for. I'm not just talking no pets, no smokers here.... (of course- no one would ever DREAM of saying not to smoke- unfortunately!!!) the main one is 'no Egyptians'. One landlord didn't like his last tenents (french) because they were couples. ie settled, quiet people who got on with their own lives, but since they were unmarried he decided this wasn't right. Thats when both people in the relationship are foreigners- if one of them happens to be Egyptian- then it is a definite no-no!
Oh- and my internet is fixed!!!!!! At long last!
I have been running about chasing the internet company for weeks,
visiting their office,
for weeks and weeks,
who eventually sent me to the phone company,
who i called and called
and had friends call on my behalf,
who sent a technician and said all was working and it wasn't,
so I went back to the phone company, who were supposed to send another technician out,
anyway- you get my point- it's been a drama!.....
In the end, I mentioned to the bowab that someone was supposed to come from the phone company and he said why? The local guy, who's sole job is to cycle around with telephone wire on his back and fix peoples phones easily and cheaply, comes by everyday. i only had to say! Grrrr. The things that you dont know from not having grown up in an area! Anyway- this 'cable guy' we'll call him for the sake of it, came round today and fitted a new cable for me all in less that 15 mins and everything, phone line and internet, has been hunky dory ever since! ( 'Imsick Hashaab'! 'Touch wood' ). I gave him 50le for doing the job, because he refused to quote me a price and said he'd be happy with whatever I gave him, and so he was and went off happy. That made 2 of us (3 if you include my current guest too, 4 or 5 if you include the friends I have been complaining to about it for over a month!!!!)
Nothing is easy in this city..... but nothing is boring either!