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Just Read the Sign

In the elevator to our apartment building, there are always paper signs posted up listing various bits of information that I knew eventually would become relevant but never really paid that much attention to.

D and I continually joke about the information and occasionally sit in a panic wondering when the kind security guards will come baning on our door again.

'Again' because the first day of our week holiday our apartment phone rang. The apartment phone is a security phone and even has a video that lights up when someone rings the doorbell.

Going from a place in Belfast with no peephole to a full fledged video security system was quite a treat. But hearing the phone ringing and NOT seeing the video light up meant only one thing - okay two things. One, it was the security desk and two we were not going to have a clue what they were saying.

I picked up the phone anyway and after a brief conversation (consisting as usual of me 'ahhh...I don't know' and lots of Korean rambling on) I thought perhaps they had the wrong number.

Okay, okay wishful thinking. Two minutes later the phone rang again except this time the video screen lit up to reveal the security guard at the front door.

After a bit of the A language, we figured out he wanted our phone number. Easy done. Thought it was for his records in case, you know, for emergencies.

With that language nightmare over, we settled into the couch only to have our mobile ring five minutes later. Guess what? MORE KOREAN!

I won't bore you with the scenario because just imagine the taxi one from last week except a female voice and significantly nicer but I finally hung up the phone after she let me know that she knew the school I taught at. Okay. Great.

(turns out she phoned the school to tell them that all we needed to do was to update our names and numbers with the apartment office)

So, if worrying about the nice non-english speaking security men comign to the door wasn't enough, we tend to have a niggling feeling that the signs posted could sometimes be relevant.

We're not sure but we can only guess that when they decided to turn off all the water in the building unit, they would have probably alerted everyone by some kind of notice.

And being able to read that notice would have helped us a lot before last night when we had defrosted chicken and D lived in fear the entire evening that we were going to poison ourselves because we had not cleaned our hands properly (thank goodness again for Purell and the Mother Ship that sent it).

When I ventured up to the security hut last night, I was expecting it to be difficult to communicate. But all I needed was 'no' and 'water' and he immediatly knew.

'All' he said in english. 'tomorrow. 12'

That's all I needed to know my water would come back on at 12am. Excellent.

What would have been even more perfect is if it HADN'T gone off again this morning.

Guess I'll just have to try and read that sign.


Anonymous said…
Hey A
Funny funny funny. You're developing a routine for your next career as standup comic. Will try to call tomorrow night....and yes, I did go on line to check out rates ;)

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