On Suicides and Internet Cafes

As most people probably guessed or expected, my posts have become less and less frequent. This is due in part to me having a job, but is mostly due to me being selfish and choosing to spend ~99% of my free time entertaining myself or sleeping.  I apologize for my laziness.

Anyhow, a lot has happened since my last post. I’ve moved into my own place (hope to post photos soon on facebook) and I’m in the process of getting my residency card. I’m getting to know the area around my place more and trying to explore the city further. Before I moved into my new place I thought I had a good understanding of the city but having moved to nearly the opposite side, I’ve come to realize just how massive it is.  There’s still lots to be found, which is always a good feeling for me.

I’m about 90% happy with my new place. I like it a lot, but it’s a little more expensive than I wanted. It is very elegant and decorated quite well, it’s pretty modern and has a big window view that looks onto the whole city below. My one complaint is this near constant odor in the bathroom. I have no idea where it is coming from however it is most likely the drain on the floor or the toilet.  I’ve spent a fair amount of time trying to figure out how to describe the smell to other people. Currently I’ve been describing it as a ‘rotting beef’ smell. I’m not actually sure what beef smells like when it rots but this smell is how I imagine it to be. It’s very pungent and I am not able to adapt my nose to it. So even after showering and spending ample time in the bathroom, it is every bit as putrid as when I walked in. The only thing that has been able to alleviate the smell is when I used some ‘DRANO’ equivalent in the shower drain, the bathroom drain, the sink drain, and the toilet. However the smell’s absence was brief and when I opened the bathroom door the next morning my nostrils were shocked as usual. My idea for what to do next is split between buying a bunch more DRANO and using it multiple times to clear out whatever is causing the smell or having a plumber come over and use his expertise to figure out what’s up. Part of me is scared that I’m going to find out, “Oh, that smell? It’s no big deal. Everyone’s bathroom smells like that in the building.” I really would find that hard to believe but if it was the case at least I could have some others I could comiserate with. Maybe we could start our own taskforce and work up a solution to the problem.  I would  come up with the ingenious and cost effective solution, cheered on by all my building’s residents, and later be voted the president of the apartment’s government. Most likely though, it’s a blockage in the toilet, left there by my landlady, easily fixed by a plumber.

Well, besides my bathroom triggering my gag reflex every time I enter it, my apartment has treated me well. My bed is probably the most comfortable that I’ve ever had. My couch is also quite comfortable and I have a nice flatscreen TV in front of it. The apartment has a gym, a laundry service, and a videogames room with a big tv. I’ve really been digging it. Until this evening.

I added some new music to my iPhone, I was looking forward to riding my scooter to some new music. I popped in my headphones and started listening to Vampire Weekend’s Contra,  took the elevator down to the 1st floor, and started to walk through the courtyard to the lobby. After a few steps into the courtyard I noticed something a bit weird. I saw this guy laying on the ground passed out. My first thought was, “Damn, that guy must have gotten drunk as hell to be passed out down here.” After a second more of looking at him, I realized that his pants were ripped at the seams along the sides and that you could see his thighs. So I changed my view of the situation to something more like, “This guy must of had the shit kicked out of him/this guy must have done some serious drunk stumbling.” I walked into the lobby of my apartment and that’s when I realized it was something much more serious. I saw a lot of people who looked very flustered. They were frantically making phone calls and talking to one another. A guy dressed in gym clothes saw me and walked over, speaking to me in nearly perfect English, he said, “That man just jumped. He landed about 10 seconds before you walked out. It’s over. He’s dead.” I was a bit taken aback because what I’d seen in a glance didn’t seem to match up with how I would perceive someone to look after falling 15 or so stories. I expected someone falling from those heights would have more or less exploded, while this guy looked just like a guy passed out. I’m fortunate that it wasn’t a gruesome sight and that I never looked into his eyes. I think that would have made a much stronger image in my head. Anyhow, I left my place pretty quickly after I was told what had happened. I hopped around the city all night and i’ve ended up in an internet cafe with a friend where I write this post and put off going home a little longer. 

Internet cafe’s here are actually pretty cool. You might be wondering, what the hell is the point of an internet cafe when you have internet at home? Well, for one, you aren’t all alone. I like being around other people while I waste my time. I suppose it’s roughly akin to people wanting to study at the school library instead of in their room. So besides there being other people, the cafe also has tons of games on all the computers that are free to play, they serve excellent tea, and have the most comfortable chairs ever. I’ve been playing really easy computer games because I’m awful at any kind of videogame. So it’s mostly been racing games and ‘angry birds’ for me.

Well, I’ll try and update again soon.

– Cal


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