Saturday, February 24, 2018

drip, drip, drip

There was a knock on my door around 10PM tonight. When I opened the door, a nondescript Korean gent took one look at me and said in Korean, "Uh... is there a Korean person that I can talk to?" "Talking to me is fine," I said in Korean. The man explained that my downstairs neighbors have complained that a leak from my bathroom is dripping down into their bathroom, and that this seems to be happening every time I use the shower, not the toilet. I let the man in and allowed him to inspect my bathroom. In the end, he said he'd be back later, probably with a crew, to make any repairs. In the meantime, he awkwardly requested that I not use the shower for the next little while. I told him that would be fine; I can simply take sponge baths for the next few days if necessary (I don't know the Korean way to say "take a sponge bath," so I simply made up the verb seupeonji-baesseu-hada on the spot; he understood). This would be like camping.

Once the man left, I wryly reflected on the fact that living in an old building is a bit like the aging process itself: one thing goes wrong, and when you repair it, something else goes wrong. It wasn't that long ago that I was having my own leak-from-above problem, which turned out to have originated a couple floors above me, affecting my circuit breaker. Yup: getting old is about constantly putting out fires until, one day, the fire gets you.

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