Not Sure What I’m Learning, but I’m Learning Something

Well we’re finally back on the communication grid after almost a week of zero-contact with the outside world.

We moved out of our temporary place last weekend and are finally settled into our new house with our roommates and all the dogs. Meera is learning to tolerate Brutus – our roommates’ boxer – and I think the feeling is mutual. Maybe one day they’ll actually learn to be friends rather than passive-aggressive housemates who steal each other’s’ toys and don’t allow each other on the couch.

I like the house for the most part. It is definitely a major upgrade from the 20×20-foot prison cell they call a dorm room. We’re still getting used to only 3-4 hours of air conditioning a day (just before bedtime) and having the puppy in the room with us at night, but things are going well. Meera is learning to sleep quietly on the area rug by the bed and can control her bladder almost until the Mister’s alarm goes off in the morning. She still has to go outside about 45 minutes before we would normally get up, but she’s getting better about letting me go back to bed after the Mister leaves for class.

We have regular cable and internet now (the prongs on the modem cord broke right after the technician left last Friday and he didn’t bring us a new one until today, thus the missing Monday post), so I start my mornings with Kelly and Michael on ABC (as it should be). The boys’ are both at school all day and B (our girl roommate) has a nanny job several days a week, so I spend a lot of time at the house alone. But I like having time to myself, so I suppose it all works out.

We talked to our car mechanic today and found out that he’s fixed the transmission but realized that one of our axles – likely the rear one – is broken, which is probably what jammed our differential and broke the transmission in the first place. So that means more repairs, more money and more time without transportation. That’s one of the biggest things about this island, I think – the lack of reliable personal transportation and the ability to leave the house and run errands at my own pace.

I’m not sure if I’m actually learning patience or just becoming indifferent, but I’ve reached a point where I just don’t want to fight the island’s hassles anymore. Like the other day when a local store refused to let me pay for my items because I couldn’t produce a bank card with my own name on it – even though I had three forms  of identification linking me to Matthew and explained that the bank won’t give me my own card. I argued for a few minutes and then just gave up. B was more outraged than I was.

Or like the dresser drawer in our bedroom that doesn’t have a bottom. I could spend months arguing with our landlord about whether or not a drawer really needs to have a bottom, or I could store our belongings elsewhere, take a picture for posterity and not even mention it. I opt to give up.

So poll for the audience: patience or indifference? Discuss.

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8 thoughts on “Not Sure What I’m Learning, but I’m Learning Something

    • Creativity is definitely valuable here. I’ve always been proud of my ability to be resourceful, but living here puts that on a whole new level. Haha! It’s a basic survival skill around here.

  1. It sounds like you’re learning to be indifferent rather than patient. Though there are some typical norms here that make us learn to be patient instead. For example, I witnessed an obviously new student berate the staff at Rituals for her and her friends’ late bagels and they were about to be late for class, and she’s shouting out at them and everyone else around her as if to get sympathy, and all I could do was laugh (inside, of course) because those of us who’ve been here longer than a week know how slow customer service is and we plan accordingly. Little adjustments we just have to make to survive here.

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