Saturday, October 6

Challenges of Living in Others' Homes

I am grateful for the opportunity to live rent free in the homes of friends while they are overseas, and I am trying to sort my life out.  I find it difficult that I do not have a home base, change my address frequently and the biggy, is that I have to get used to a new set of appliances, keys, security, gardens, dogs, etc.

Let me explain.  I actually feel very comfortable in the house I am in, BUT, I have found the oven difficult to use.  I can't find an instruction booklet and I know I am not using it properly so I tend to avoid cooking anything in the oven.  The stove is fine, I can manage that, and the washing machine is easy to use.

The microwave?  Mmmm.  The one in the house is a relatively new style without the rotating plate.  One just sits the food in the middle of the floor and turn on the timer, or select from any of the many other settings to get the food to heat or cook.  Oddly enough, towards the end of the cooking time sometimes it goes into 'cool' mode.  I want my food to heat, not cool.  Again, I am unable to find the instruction booklet.  Is it locked in the filing cabinet?

I think I have mastered the dog - she's quite cute and obedient and I don't have any trouble other than the odd occasion that we meet unexpectedly and I nearly trip over her.  Goes with the territory with dogs though.  And she stinks, despite having just had a grooming session at the doggy beauty parlour!!!

Backing out of the drive way is not terribly difficult, but it is up a steep slope and hard to see, no impossible to see, with a stone wall on either side.  Good thing I am good at reversing, but one has to keep one's  wits about them, as the car port is narrow and I have to make sure I don't scrape my car on either of the brick uprights on either side of the car port. So far, so good.

One thing that is always a problem is the door lock - clearly it has been damaged at some time - and 99% of the time, the key does not wish to lock the door.  The owner and I are paranoid about security and I've bent the key in an effort to lock up.  Time after time I do my best to get it to work, and occasionally just give up and hope that the screen door will hold should anyone try to enter the house.

Because I have long house sits - things like the above (and there are 'differences' in every house that the sitter has to get used to and I am over it.

Do I go months without using the oven?  Do I struggle for several months with the lock?  Do I have to put up with stinky dog for two months?

If it was my house, I'd make some changes - fix the lock (it apparently was broken a long time ago).  I will check the Internet for instruction on the microwave and oven, but oh, damn, I'm having trouble with the Internet too.

I'm counting the days though - hoping that all will be well for my plan to set off into the Red Centre of Australia at the end of November.  I do plan to find a place to rent and live in my own space when I return.  I can't wait.

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