So, in the last episode of my Life’s Story, I had a job in Lahore so it was only natural that I would search for some place to live as well. For a while it seemed that the administration at my old place had only one aim of their lives: to kick me out of their hostel. So I said, OK, that is not a difficult thing to do. One just has to search in Google and olx and there are thousands of places with a variety of price ranges. But it was easier said than done. After 2 months of searching, I finally found a place to live. That is not what I wanted and I don't know how will it make me feel but anyhow it will do for now. But the journey is worth sharing for you people to read.
|Joey's Apartment as shown on F.R.I.E.N.D.S.|
It all started when I found this ad on olx.com:
Studio Apartment for Rent
Fully furnished, attach bath, spacious, well ventilated, just a few minutes from local bus stop, market and mosque. Rent is only 6000 Rupees (60 dollars).
Now the idea of apartment in my mind mainly comes from this TV series F.R.I.E.N.D.S. as most of the time they are sitting in one apartment or another. So I contacted the person on the number given in the ad. I went to see the apartment. For the first time I realized, Oxford dictionary is severely outdated and in urgent need of update. The definition of apartment here is a 10x10ft room with attached bath. I asked the person that OK that is the room but where is the kitchen area. He opened the cupboard and abracadabra, the kitchen was there. In a shelf. He said that is the kitchen area. Needless to say, I returned unsuccessful.
Next time I found this another interesting ad. It was a little pricey at 8500 Rupees but it was near to the place where I work and it said it has an AC, TV and fridge. So I called the owner and I packed my stuff so that I just had to go and settle there and then. But thanks to my friend who said what is the hurry, we just get the key and you can shift tomorrow. But I told him that is the best place and someone will take it. So we started to go. There I learnt a few new definitions:
- I could swear, Prince Saleem had stayed in this room when he rebelled against King Akbar.
- 21 inch LCD TV means if you have the imagination to see the non-existent things.
- Attached bath means if it is within a 20 meter radius of the room.
So again I left. And I was happy that I didn’t bring my suitcase.
For the next few weeks I called around 200 real estate agents and visited more than 100 places but to no avail. But in the meantime I learnt a few things which are worth sharing:
- 2-3 minute walk from main road/bus stop means if you can walk at supersonic speed.
- Furnished room means a room having energy saver bulb and fan.
- Newly build means if it is built sometime during World War 2.
- Excellent conditions mean it is a 19th century building where the British army once stayed.
- Executive male or female means a person who is happy to live in a 10x10ft room, stays as paying guest or shares a room with students and needs a bike parking.
- Attached bath means it is adjacent to the room but the door is on the other side of it so you will have to move out and then walk around to enter.
- Carpeted room means a room which has a rug from the late renaissance era. You can clearly see the footprints of Da Vinci and Michaelangelo on it.
- Fridge means an icebox where u can keep a maximum of 2 cups of water.
- Studio apartment means a room having an attached bath.
- A 3 bed room apartment means a flat having 1 bedroom, 1TV lounge and one kitchen.
- Cold/Hot water availability means hot in summer and cold in winter.
- Kitchen with oven/fridge etc means a common kitchen shared by at least 10 other rooms in the house.
And if that was not enough, almost all of them required you to be married, having a family living with you, advance payment of 2xrents as security plus one advance rent and an agreement of 1 year.
So I think life is tough out there for single people. Next time, do not look in the real estate/rental sections on olx. Search the matrimonial.
P.S. Never trust the pictures of the apartments as they are never real. And there was this one guy I called and I learnt someone put his number as a joke and apparently he was getting a lot of calls from prospective tenants because it was very reasonably priced. But no to be.