Saturday, January 15, 2005

Apartment fight again...

Thursday night I got completely knocked out by a cold. The lack of sleep took it's toll. I'm already feeling fine, after taking the day off on Friday, pretty much laying all day in bed feeling crappy. While I was lying in my bed Friday morning there was an argument going on in the living room. My flatmate TianMengYuan was arguing with the landlord about something. Wen later told me that she had heard the landlord say that she was behind with the rent and that she had threatened to move out. Behind with the rent? And I have already paid for 3 months in advance... how could that be?

When coming on from the room the apartment had been cleaned and the tent was removed. There was a backback on the floor. It sure looked like she was moving out. Taking into consideration a row of argument about the electricity fee, the broadband fee, my trust for her was not really on top. I wanted to believe that it was just a bunch of bad coincidence, since she otherwise seems to be very friendly.

In the evening I managed to go out and have farewell dinner with ZhangFan who was going home for Chinese New Year. Coming home TianMengYuan was there. I asked her about the argument and what was going on. I wanted to see the contract she had with the landlord or a receipt that showed that she actually had paid my money to the landlord. She refused! From having a friendly talk it got more and more into an argument. She showed some pieces of papers that looked like a receipt from an ATM and something that was supposed to be a contract. Neither me or Wen was at all convinced. In the end we asked if we could call the landlord and get confirmed that TianMengYuan had the right to the apartment until March, but she refused this too, getting a more and more hostile tone towards us. It was really a nightmare for a while. She was planning to leave the apartment early next day. If she left and didn't come back there would be no way for me to find her away. I swear to god that I would have forced her to stay in the apartment until she called the police or let me talk to the landlord.

So, who do I call when I'm in these tricky situations? My lawyer of course. WuZheJian (Andrew), sounding really concerned, promised to come right over. Knowing my skills to handle conflicts since Apartment World War I with Mr Evil, he was probably quite reluctant to get involved again in the upcoming AWWII.

To our great relief the phone call seemed to have an effect and we got the number to the landlord. She wasn't in at the time but at least we got confirmed we had the right number by her husband. Later on the landlord called back and we got our confirmation. So much trouble for such a stupid thing. My theory was that she wanted to keep it a secret how much she actually pays for the apartment. It turns out that she's actually not paying anything, but earns a couple of hundred by renting out these two rooms.

Me, Wen, the lawyer, and the lawyer's Korean girlfriend went out for a drink instead, relieved that I am rather sure that I don't have to live on the street the coming weeks. Would be difficult to combine with the work. Pretty cold too.


Anonymous said...

What gesture to make to break the ice of the apartment and reconcile at least superficially with this now-so-easy-on-fire hard woman? a note? a feast? a man? what does she want?

Johan said...

Luckily she seems to have come over it. She still says she is pissed off, but she does it with a smile. Next sentense she is accusing me for using up all the electricity. Guess we have another fight coming up when we have to go and buy electricity in a couple of days.