Wednesday, October 7, 2009


So this lovely building right here is my current and future home for the next six months. I took this picture during a rare patch of sun (it rains here almost constantly). Once I had my things set down in my room, I looked around the apartment a bit, not that there's much to see since it's so small but I found hints of a roommate. I say hints because his name is on the door, he has things like towels, plates, and some food in the apartment, but it's been almost a week since I moved in and I haven't seen any sign of him actually being here yet.

That being said, I set off alone to go in search of supplies for my apartment.
After poking around for a little while, I realized I was back at square one as far as household essentials go. Food was easy enough to find, supermarkets are supermarkets the world over, they may have different formats and cater to different crowds but they all serve the same basic function: provide me with food. After I had food covered I hit another road block: I had no plates or cups, no silverware, no pots or pans either. My American intuition would have led me to Target or Walmart for all my genre-encompassing needs. But this isn't America and there are no Targets or Walmarts. So where is one to find such essentials when he's alone in a foreign land with no clue what to do? The simple answer is do without, for the first couple days I ate off halloween paper plates and cups.

Eventually I did find everything I needed, the cooking essentials at a department store and other things like detergent and kitchen towels at a small connivence-like store (think Walgreens without the drugs). It was an interesting, and at times, difficult process to do all of these start up things completely on my own. There were many things going on all at once, not just thing finding of replacements for my halloween plates. I was becoming familiar in a city I had never been in and being completely reliant on myself to get everywhere and find everything. It took me a couple days to figure out the streetcar system and all the different lines for it. Fortunately for me, for some reason they didn't start checking tickets until after I got my rail pass from the university.

I'm glad to finally be settled in to my apartment and start to finally get a grip on things, just taking everything one step at a time (I still haven't figured out where to wash my giant mound of dirty clothes). Classes will be starting soon and I feel like I'm just about as ready as I can be. I know how to get to the places I need to go and my fridge is well stocked. At this point, I don't think there a whole lot else I could ask for.

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