You can see all of this at MY BLOG
, but I will just place it here too.
I decided to rent out a small apartment for a few days during the NWP/NCTE (National Writing Project & National Council for Teachers of English) conference I reserved a place on 55 Morton Street in Greenwich Village (View Larger Map
). Greenwich village is awesome! The locals are great! The coffee shops, music stores, and restaurants were wonderful. I never felt unsafe as I walked back to my place alone at 1 or 2 in the morning. (The rest of the conference attendees stayed up in Times Square.)
I will say, however, that I got a taste of what it is like to live in a REALLY old building. I figured that I would be given a place with a nice view and a clean room. I knew that I would not come back in the evenings to find my bed made with a piece of chocolate on the pillow. I knew the final cleaning would be up to me. However, I did not expect what I encountered.
The Interesting Surprises:
I checked out the shower because a clean shower is important. If I had been in a horror movie, I would have heard a shrieking noise when I pulled back the shower curtain. I don't know what kind of substance it was, but I knew that I would not be able to take standing on it. I also knew that, being November, I wouldn't be able to find flip-flops to wear in there. I decided to just stand on a towel.
There were two air conditioners, one in the kitchen and one in the bedroom/den/dining room. I went to turn on the one in the kitchen to find that it was turned off...or so I thought. I realized it was not plugged in. I looked for a nearby plug and realized that the plug was 3 pronged, but the outlet was two pronged. Lest I die a fiery death, I thought I better not break off that third prong. The other air conditioner was not plugged in either, but luckily I found a plug for it. I plugged it in and hit the high button. When it started it had reminded me of a muffled motorbike engine as if you were standing about 30 yards away. I didn't sleep well that night, but I learned that setting it on Medium stopped the sound.
I really shouldn't blame the sleeplessness on the air conditioner, though. I found that the window's blinds were rather bothersome. You see, when I am asleep, I don't mind people watching me. However, when I am going to sleep and I think someone is watching me, it makes it rather difficult to drift off. The blinds beside the bed stopped about 2 feet before the bottom. Outside was a fire escape, and I kept imagining that someone was either watching me from an opposing window or sitting on the fire escape and staring. Eventually, I just stacked pillows from the futon and some bags in front of the window to make sure.
In the morning, I awoke with just enough time to take a shower and sprint to the subway to go 25+/- blocks uptown to the conference. I ran in there threw back the shower curtain, threw a towel in the bottom of the shower, grabbed the handle to turn on the water, and then I realized it was in my hand; that is, it was no longer attached to the faucet. I tried to turn the little screw with my fingers, but found that I was not able to do so. After about 3 minutes of learning how to put the handle back on, I was good to go, though mildly irritated.
The only other element that was broken was the phone. I went to call a local restaurant to see when it closed and found that the phone was dead. That was okay, because I had my cell phone. However, what if I HAD plugged in that first air conditioner after breaking off the 3rd prong on the plug. What if it HAD caught on fire. I might have died.