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Housemates? No, thank you.

I’ve been complaining a lot about everything lately, therefore, I wish to write this post as a means of showing that I am trying really hard not to complain, yet sometimes it’s simply impossible to just let things slide.

This post is for the people currently looking for a place to rent or own.

Never look for a shared house. Never consider having housemates, flatmates, roommates. Nothing which ends in -mates should live in your house. Don’t think that your room will be your private sanctuary and nobody will invade your privacy. Walls are thin, doors can be opened and open windows let sounds slide in. Unless you’re moving in an acoustically secluded atomic bunker, you have your own kitchen and bathroom and you only have a meter or two for a common hallway, please listen to me and don’t do it.

And since not all of us are lucky enough to have that, we’re stuck with these ruthless creatures called “housemates”.

When we moved in Birmingham, my boyfriend told me it was a bad idea to live in a shared house. I thought that nothing could go wrong. Girls are clean, nice people who sometimes know their limits and they’re not disgusting.

SO. WRONG.

Housemates will want to move things around the house, take showers whenever they feel like it, keep the bathroom busy for 40 something minutes in the morning, come home at 2 AM drunk and make a lot of noise, have loud sex when you’re struggling to fall asleep and last, but definitely not least, they will cook disgustingly smelling food, they will chew in a noisy fashion, they will speak loudly and scream from the second floor when you least expect it. They will blow their nose loudly in the bathroom for at least 5 minutes every morning and you will hear every single blow. They will leave their things around the house and then complain you’re the messy one.  They will turn off the heat and you will end up shivering during the night. Did I mention your housemates will breathe?

I ran out of any drop of patience I might have had left. I’m afraid I will snap the next time I’ll be forced to socially interact with them.

And if someone has any valid answer, I have a question: Who wakes up at 8 AM in the morning on a Sunday morning and starts cleaning? WHO and WHY!?

M.G.

Unwinding

I’m as patient as it gets most of the times. Sometimes though, various – less pleasant – circumstances simply seem to follow me around. It’s been one week since I started working full-time. I’m not cleaning toilets nor waiting tables, yet sometimes I wonder whether that would have been a better option. Then I remember the paycheck and I let it slide.

I’ve never been able to sew my clothes without making them look as if a 5 year old decided to patch something. I’ve been a mess for as long as I can remember and the only thing I am good at is misplacing needles on the floor and bed after repeated fail attempts at trying to be a tailor.

A week ago I went for an interview to work in a customer service position. I got the job and I went happily to work the second day. Did I mention I work in a shop for clothing alterations? I’m not a tailor, but I am the person who’s responsible with making the connection between the tailors and the customers. They tell me what they want, I give them options, reach a conclusion, I give them a price for the desired alterations, give them a collection day/time and that’s it. Meanwhile I’m forced to learn how the tailors alter various types of clothes, to make the difference between expensive clothes and cheap fabrics, I get to touch Armani, Burberry, Gucci, Alexander McQueen, Ted Baker and various other famous brands.

I love my job and it gives me the opportunity to learn new things.

However, being the first person to interact with all the customers, you get to see the ugly side of things as well.

The first type of people that really annoy me more than anything are the ones who don’t speak proper English. I get it, you might have an awful Birmingham/West Midlands accent, we’ve got no problem there. I understand it, but the moment someone walks in the shop and speaks as if it’s got things stuck in its mouth and is keeping him from pronouncing half of the words, then we have a problem. And spit the f****n’ gum or at least don’t chew it like you’re disgusted.

The second type usually follows the first type of people. These are the twats that come in with their hands so deeply stuck in their pockets they’re like trying to find China at the end of them. Unless you’re digging that deep to pay us for your alterations, don’t bother.

Then, we have your average people with speech impediments. They’re mute. You have to guess what they want from you and then you’ll get no reaction whatsoever. I’m glad my intuition is serving its purpose.

The last type of people I HONESTLY do not understand are the snobs. They buy VERY expensive clothes, sometimes they spend even 1000 pounds on a disgusting looking jacket, and they come to have them fitted, which might give them a bill of 100 pounds extra. The moment they see the prices for alterations they cringe.

So let me get it straight, you buy a 1000 pounds jacket that’s too big for you, and then you don’t feel like spending 100 extra for fitting. My question is as logical as it should be. WHY DID YOU BUY IT!?

*NO. We are not going to sew the Armani label back in after we shorten your sleeves.*

*PS: That dress looks awful on you.*

I’m off tomorrow.

M.G.

For the New Year

First and foremost, I’d like to wish all of you a late “Merry Christmas!” and of course, since the certainty of me writing anything new until the New Year is probably close to non-existing, I have decided to also rush the “Happy New Year!” with a couple of days.

Now that we set aside the formalities, I can type away.  

There’re 4 more days left until the 1st of January and the proximity of 2014 has given me a lot of food for thought lately. 2013 has been a year of changes for me and I’m hoping 2014 will be one huge year of consolidation. If until now things have been dithering on unstable ground, I’m determined to tighten up their structure. 

Since I left home, 3 months and a half ago, I’ve struggled to accommodate, to make this place my own and I never felt like home here. I spent my Christmas away this year, in a city near Birmingham. And in the last 3rd day away, I realized I miss my home here, in Birmingham. 

It also happened to be my first Christmas ever away from home, my parents, the place I’ve been living in for the last 23 years. These are so far the toughest moments to be away from home, besides when you’re sick or the separation causes you strange waves of emotions. 

However difficult this may be at times, I left home for a reason. And I promise here, just as I promised myself before leaving, that I will not give up on my dreams. 

So these are my main goals for the 2014th year. This year will be a year of consolidation, career and success. 

Have a beautiful party everyone, 

M.G. 

Crisps are chips

Hello dear readers,

Today I am going to touch a rather sensitive topic, and that is the urgency with which people should learn the English language before coming to the UK and what they should not expect once here.

I’ve been speaking the language for as long as I can remember. I can’t pinpoint a day or moment for it, however I doubt I still remember at least a part of the time when I was 4 years old.

I never went to kindergarten and the first time studying it ‘academically’ was when I was 8 years old, in the second grade.
I furthered my education at one of our city’s best high-schools by attending an intensive English programme until the 12th grade. I’ve topped everything with a BA in Foreign Languages with the English language and literature as a Major.

And with all this in the background, with all my knowledge and occult linguistic theories, I will admit that understanding the language is difficult.

Birmingham-England-great-britain-31748993-500-375
The Bullring

Now I did not come here to talk about my background but to thoroughly criticize the masses of people coming to the UK for jobs and expect benefits. I can’t wrap my mind around how ignorant one can be to come to a country, expect to suddenly become rich and be coddled by the society.

And what bothers me most is that not even a quarter of them actually know English. The UK has nothing against Romanians and Bulgarians or any other nationality, they have something against them not paying their debts and living on that corner of the street with their countless family members. Why come here in the first place if they’re planning on spending the nights under the stars, on some bench in some park? Given the chance, I would tell them the climate is friendlier back home, it rains less and it’s warmer.

I understand times are tough. Trust me, I do. I’ve been feeling it on my own. And I’m lucky that I manage to make my way and pay my debts to society while others just expect everything to get easy for them. There is no easy way here. There is no easy way outside your comfort zone. The impact is brutal.

So next time you consider migrating to another country, please consider this aspect: A polished language and a bucket of courage. Actually, I take that back, a lot more courage and financial stability for a couple of months would help you a lot. Self-sufficiency is crucial in the first months.

PS: Crisps are chips.

M.G.