Friday, June 08, 2018

moving up in the world

Yesterday at work, a Korean staffer approached my desk and told me that a real-estate agent working in my apartment building (our lobby level has several competing real-estate offices) would like to take me on a tour of a renovated apartment on the 14th floor, eight floors above where I live. This invitation to a tour came about because I had told the boss, months ago, that I've never been completely happy with my current digs. The apartment I'm in right now is a parade of horrors, big and small: peeling and ripped wallpaper, gummed-up ventilator fans in the kitchenette, a nonsensical kitchenette sink made of a stain-absorbing plastic(!), a disgusting bathroom rife with impossible-to-remove hard-water stains and actual holes in the walls, dilapidated furniture, bad internet (until recently), and random "sticker hooks" all over every vertical surface, left there by the previous tenant.

When I got to the real-estate office at 11 this morning, the agent greeted me with a certain perfunctory brusqueness that I found off-putting. She warmed up eventually, though, answering some of my questions about the 14th-floor apartment as we did our little inspection tour. As it turns out, the apartment itself has about the same amount of floor space as does my current place; it lacks a bed and a fridge, but I think my boss can arrange for those to be brought in (I can probably just take along the bed I'm currently using: the boss had gotten that bed expressly for me when I arrived in 2015). The new place's kitchenette has a gas range with pop-up safety buttons embedded in each burner; Charles tells me these are now standard on modern gas ranges. And glory of glories, the new place's bathroom looks like a space that's fit for human use! That, more than anything else, is what sold me on the apartment. The new bathroom is shiny and tiled; its facilities are sparkling, probably thanks to the newness of the residence's renovation. The sink/shower valve in the bathroom looks like a rational swivel or dial, not the weird push/pull tab that I have now.

The one big drawback to the new place is that I'll be losing my current beautiful, easterly view, which overlooks a park, faces some mountains, and lets in the sunrise every morning. My current view also shows me the Lotte World Tower, over in Jamshil, making it easy to see nighttime fireworks displays. The new place has windows facing north, and much of that view is blocked by other apartment buildings. While that's disappointing, I normally live with my blinds down most of the time, anyway, so I suppose it would be no big loss to lose my current vista. That's what I'm telling myself, at least.

When I move—because I've already said yes to the real-estate agent—I'm probably going to have to get rid of (or simply stow) some current possessions. I still have the bed that I'd used while living in Ilsan all those ages ago; if I keep it, it'll serve as a guest bed, but I seriously doubt I'll be hosting overnight visits at my place. Ever. If that's the case, then there's no need to keep the bed around. Off with his bed! Because the new place comes with a bunch of closet space, I might also ditch my biggest, ugliest bookshelf/cabinet thingie in favor of smaller, more modular shelving. And at some point, I need to toss my current computer desk and buy a better, more modern one. That'll take some searching around.

It's exciting to know that I'll be moving into better digs soon. The move is likely to happen in July, and since July is close enough to my F-4 visa's renewal date, I may as well get the F-4 renewal done as soon as I've finished moving (in Korea, you're fined over W100,000 if you fail to inform Immigration—or your local district office—of an address change within 14 days).

Good to see some upward progress in my life, even if it all comes courtesy of my company.


Charles said...

You're movin' on up
To the top
Of a deluxe apartment
In the sky!

Kevin Kim said...

Thank you, Thomas Jefferson.

John Mac said...

Haha...I came here to make a Jefferson's reference. Damn it!

Anyway, I hated those pop up buttons on my stove. The skillet in which I fried eggs was too light apparently and couldn't be centered on the burner. Ah, I'm not missing my first world problems. Much.