Friday, June 29, 2007

National Lampoon's Move from Hell

Well, what to say? So much $**t has happened the past week! My friend calls it freak occurences but I call it a definete snub from Florida!

To begin with: The plane ride went VERY well! Once we landed and picked up our car, thats when it went downhill. The GPS system (Global Positioning System) went wonky and led us in wrong directions twice and we ended up stopping at a gas station for a map. Luckily we were in the right direction but we were lost! I fiddled with the GPS and finally got it working.

The hotel we stayed in had two fights and police cars, fire truck, and ambulance with sirens going. My in-laws were like - leave the adjoining door open so they can hear if something happens in my room. Plus - the hotel was crappy.

We left the next day and arrived to our house in Clearwater. The landscaping were in progress but the landlord, George, did not mow the backyard so everything was overgrown! The house was filthy and he proceeded to tell us that the house is infested with cockroaches! What? Roaches?!?!? He told us the house was sprayed already and will have more sprayings to reduce or eliminate the roach problem. I was so angry, I cried. He said, that's Florida. Roaches are common in the south. Right... but not in MY house!

We hadn't seen the inside of the house because the tenants were still living there and they were going to be evicted but we saw photos of inside the house. The house is beautiful, yes, but everything was old and the tenants broke a lot of things. They didn't maintain the house and lawn. They left junk in the backyard and parked multiple cars in their driveway and didn't clean up after themselves - hence the roaches. George tells me that supposedly, roaches are clean. I told him off. Internet shows that roaches cause allergies and athsma.

Everything in the house is really old, even the stove. If I calcuated right, the stove was manufactured in 1959 and is 48 years old. They have a really old intercom system which I don't even know if it works. The orginial central vaccum canister, hose and parts are still there with the original box! All light switches are orginial which means the electrical system is old too. The bathrooms are old, with pink toliet, tiles and everything.

Anyways, back to my move. The night we were getting ready for bed and I was in the living room with Ella, Sonny comes and screams at me where's the plunger. I said that the plunger is in the bathroom where I put it there. He says it's not there and I'm like - if it's not there then I don't know where it is. He's screaming at me to find the plunger and I'm wondering what's going on. Apparently the toliet backed up and was overflowing and would not stop overflowing. Bob and Dale is trying to get the toliet stopped and vaccuming up the water. Sonny is trying to stop Ash from splashing in the water - ew! Ash succeeds and we have to get his clothes off and diaper changed and I have to hold Ash back in the living room while they clean up. I tell Sonny to check our bathroom in the master bedroom and he says no. A while later, we find out that the toliet in the master bedroom is also overflowing. Sonny, remember that your wife is always right!

Oh by the way, the afmetioned plunger was in the bathroom the whole time like I said it would be.

Both toliet and bathtub was backed up and Kim makes an emergency call to our landlord. He gets a plumber out and sends us to the hotel. The guys did not get to the hotel until 2am! I choose a good hotel, that's how mad I am! I was also ready to rip up the lease and move to another house. Sonny wants to stay. The main line was clogged and the plumber had to snake it out. We return the next day and continue to kill more roaches.

We finally stay in the house through the night on Friday night and saturday morning, Sonny goes to the bathroom and he runs back and says that the toliet is backed up again. Ends up the master bedroom toliet is backed up too. We've been avoiding using our toliet because it drains incredibly slowly and always look like its gonna overflow. It's about 8am and again Kim makes the call to George.

Kim and Bob leaves for the airport and we battle more roaches. I'm even more upset and fed-up. I'm ready to yell at George and get my deposit back and find a new place. George shows up with a septic tank drain company when they proceed to drain the tank. First, they had to dig up the new landscaping that George worked so hard on to open the cement lid to the tank. Sonny tells me that the tank is FULL. No wonder the toliets and tub backed up! They finish in a hour or so and they said that the main line is still clogged so George still has to call a plumber over to clear the line. So far, we hadn't showered or went to the bathroom. Eventually the plumber shows up and start working in the hot florida sun and it's about 90 degrees or more outside. The plumber has this cool machine where he can send a camera down and see what's in the tank or the line. It looks like a baby bottle. George proceeds to accuse us of flushing the bottle down the toliet.

Whoa, George! We told him a emphatic NO! I breastfeed and the sippy cups that Ashton uses will no way in the world fit down the potty. Must be the previous tenants. George forgets that he told me that they have two small children. Well, duh, children do flush things down the toliet but comeon! Don't accuse us! When I told him that I felt bad his hard work on landscaping is ruined, he walks away waving his hands and muttering. He's gay and also very mad. That's not a good combination but funny to watch. He's a interior designer and teaches design at a college in California. He specializes in retro design, hence the 1950's house.

Get this, the plumber finds THREE baby bottles clogging the main line. He clears it up and checks both toliets to make sure they're running. George and his sister explains to us about RID-X and needing to use it i the toliet and no harsh chemicals. I've already researched on it before we moved because I knew the house is on a septic system. The septic is a tank underground where everything that goes in the drain goes in the tank. There's bacteria in the tank that 'eats' everything in the tank where it naturally seeps out in the yard, I think. Occassionally, you'd have to drain the tank every 1 to 5 years depending on the size, etc. I think the previous tenants treated the septic tank as 'garbage' and tried to flush anything down including harsh chemicals that killed off the bacteria and causing the tank to fill up with water and waste. There wasn't enough bacteria to process the waste. Now we have to flush those little packets of enzymes to feed the bacteria and grow. Think of it as baking bread vs. septic tank. Weird thought yeah but erriely similar!

We don't go to the bathroom or shower until 3pm! That night we go out to dinner with friends at a greek restaurant. Their food is so good and authenic! Thursday night ,we went out to eat with friends at an organic mexican restaurant that's to die for. Florida does have great restaurants!

We continue to battle roaches.

Today is Friday and we've battled roaches the entire week. We have a sprayer coming on July 9th to spray again and I've been working hard of depriving roaches of food and water and researching of ways to repel roaches. Apparently catnip is one of them! Many websites suggest buying a few geckoes (lizards) to let loose in the house and let them eat the cockroaches. They say that you won't see the geckos until they've eaten them all and you'll have to put them in a cage and feed them crickets. Fascinating!

Anyways, the problems hasn't ended. You would've thought the problems would be done now but it has not. The house almost got on fire this morning. That 1950's stove I mentioned earlier, has electricial problems or something like that. We had not used the stove since Wednesday night and this morning, it started smoking between the counter and side of the stove. I opened the cooktop and found that the burners are still cold. We weren't sure if it was still on or something and when I closed the cook-top, sparks happened! Sonny immediately went to turn off the electric going to the stove and called George. George can't have anyone come out till Monday and he proceeds to accuse us of not using the stove right. Yes, we have an angry gay landlord. I explaine to him exactly what happened. More likely they'll just replace the stove and put a new stove there. Last night we were talking about replacing the stove because some of the burners weren't working and he said that he's getting a glass cooktop stove but NO PROMISES. The thing with the old stove - it sits on cabinets, it's weird looking but to put a new modern stove, he'd have to tear out cabinets. Smoke has certain smells and this one smells like a electricial fire. It makes me nervous because we haven't bought a strobe system for deaf people because it's expensive. I've already gone online to research on those equipment. Living in a old house with apparent electricial issues, not easy.

Well, that concludes the hellish week we've had. Sewage problems, Roaches, and Kitchen. *shivers* Yes, we're still battling roaches but haven't seen that many today. They're nocturnal and comes out at night. Die Roaches Die!

I'll send you more photos later of the house and the stove plus kids. I'll also post an update with better stuff hopefully including our territorial lizards and our neighborhood gray squirrel.

Oh by the way... we saw a huge RAT the size of a cat or a small dog climbing the rafters at Lowes last Friday. What a nice welcome to Clearwater!

Here's a few photos to hold you off. :)

Ashton's train! He actually built this himself and tells me it's a train. It looks like a train and I'm so proud of my little boy. :)

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