Wednesday, May 14, 2008

current location, an explanation you better skip and one for those living in the rest of the world

dear friends
i am getting the idea that when writing a diary (new speak: blog), there is space been made for new thougths. i will work on the idea. i should be quick today, i am a little afraid my fathers computer could overheat.

people are asking me where i am at the moment. click: here is the answer.

maybe i should explain first a bit, especially for people living in a more or less flat area. others may skip this papagraph. people living in flat areas actually as well. how the house my mothers flat is in is situated in the landscape. when you walk out the basement you are standing on the road. when you walk out the entrance you are on the road as well. whereas the entrance is a couple of stairs higher than the basement. how can that be? first it is not the same road. it is more a path. or a yard. second, i might have mentioned before that the house is on a hill. almost on top. and that is the point. that almost on top. there is a decline between path and road, meaning you walk down the stairs outside from the yard to the road.

i was planning to get up in the morning at 8 thirty today. i did not. i got up at seven 50. after a quick breakfast i went into the supposedly empty room in the basement. same situation again: boxes all over the place, things on wrong places and such. having achieved a certain level of order my focus shifted to the preserving glasses in the second room. i started to empty the cupboard. when the neighbour came down, he asked me when the waste collectors would be coming. even more we were wondering how much waste they actually would take. or rather: how much would they leave behind? considering that we had thrown everything on that pile except electronic waste and old tires. "how much will they leave behind" was our running gag in between plastic, paper and all kinds, shapes and sizes of pieces of wood, until a truck passed by. blue and white on the outside. not waste collectors, they drive orange trucks. another truck right behind the first one. colour: orange. the neighbour said he is going to disappear now, he didn´t want to take the blame for all the wrong things we had thrown outside. and the mess we had created there. the driver got out the truck, we greeted each other and i stumbled something like "eh, it´s a little more, than one squaremetre". the guy walked along the bulk waste and counted 1....2....3....4....5.....6....7.... squaremetres. for every quarter of a squaremetre 5 euro or one coupon. (makes how much for one squaremetre? and in total?). before i was finished calculating i agreed (what else could i do anyway?). the co-driver came out the truck as well. while they were throwing the waste into their truck i was going through the basement to my mother to explain the situation. which was not too bad. back down the basement the neighbours wife reminded me to take the boxes of blankets out as well. i took the first one, walked out and asked the guys if they would take blankets as well. they did. the neighbour was back. he suggested to me not to just put the boxes next to the others, but to throw them right into the truck. the neighbour and me started to believe that we really could get rid of this incredible pile of stuff. after 5 more boxes of blankets, sleeping bags and curtains we became a bit bolder and started to bring garbage bags. we even tried with an old tire. but they returned that. which they did with some metall parts as well. like an old hospital bed (where did this come from?). they took some pieces of furniture apart, threw the material part in the direction of the truck and left the metall parts on the road. well, better than we had expected. after about one hour the entire 7 squaremetres were crushed inside the bulk waste collectors truck. the driver asked me if i wanted to pay cash or by bank transfer. i said by bank transfer. or cash. actually i didn´t mind. he had already filled in his form, he didn´t mind if i sign or my mother. the guys drove down the road. i realised that the driver had used some yugoslav language. with the neighbour i went back to have another look at the basement and realised that i forgot to take a photo from the bulk waste. the neighbour said a photo from the half cleaned out second room would do as well. from those 7 squaremetres we had gotten the hospital bed, some smaller pieces of furniture and a metall cup board back. at the same time we had added all those boxes of blankets, cardboard, old paper ad mixed garbage. more than enough to make up for the metall. i said a couple times thank you in different words to the neighbour.

my next project was to broom the attic. this is the moment to explain a typical custom here in schwaben which they call "kehrwoche". the kehrwoche regulates the weekly cleaning of the house and surrounding area. i am not aware which laws and rules exist in other areas, thus give me a couple of minutes. each family takes turns in cleaning. the family in turn gets a sign "kehrwoche" next to their door. i will investigate further on this topic. as adolescent my older sister and me had to help our parents with kehrwoche. my sister did the stairs, i did the basement and the attic. i should say rather, i was supposed to do attic and basement. i did broom the basement. but i hated to broom that attic. it was next to impossible to clean the black, concrete floor. wherever i went with the broom there was dust blown into the air. on the black floor it was about impossible to see the dust. it was probably even more than hate. i just couldn´t do it. i did .... nothing. i waited a while. or was walking in circles. and counted. since the time past even slower when i had my watch with me, i left it on purpose in the flat. after a while i went back to the flat and pretended that i had done my share of kehrwoche. as things are subject to change, the floor of the attic is. it´s neither black anymore (at least usually), nor concrete. somebody had put some plastic with a light colour instead (or on top). actually the light colour was covered with a layer of dust (which made the floor almost black again). it is like holidays to go over it with the broom. compared to the floor as i knew it. still the attic has a roof on top. with a pitched roof area. which meant for me that i was brooming on my knees or almost horizontal. when i had finished the bin was half full. with dust. this week my mother and me have kehrwoche, i will try to figure out if my efforts of today could be seen as part of this.

for lunch my mother had prepared not just left overs from not just yesterday. but from the days before as well. i felt hungry and had cake as desert. still the staircase was waiting for cleaning. the part taking most of the time was the railing. brooming and mopping took only a couple of minutes. the rest of the day i bought a new printer, fiddled on a homepage and with the speed of my father´s computer.

and am going to bed.


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