A Forced Relocation
Posted by MyLaowai on Monday, November 19, 2007
About this time last year, I was sitting at my desk at home, when there came a tentative knock on the door. Naturally, I did the smart thing and ignored it. It wasn’t long before I heard the noises of someone trying to fit various keys into the lock, and it became obvious that my unwelcome visitor was either the landlord hoping to see what I had under the bed, or yet another botched attempt by the PSB to place yet another bug somewhere in the living room. I crept over to the door and flung it open, surprising the small group on the other side.
The conversation proceeded thusly:
MyLaowai: “Who the fuck are you?”
Unwanted Visitor: “I am the estate agent who is selling the house, and these people are potential buyers who have come for a look.”
ML: “You have the wrong house, this one isn’t for sale.”
UV: “This is the right house, your landlord gave me the keys.”
ML: “You have ten seconds before I break your nose. 9… 8… 7…”
And they departed rapidly. But the Unwanted Visitor had been telling me the truth, and my landlord bluntly confirmed that she had handed over the keys to several estate agents, with instructions to come only at times when I wasn’t expected to be home. A lucky thing that I had changed the locks shortly after moving in a year previously. Anyway, it was made clear that she was selling the house and that Mrs MyLaowai and I had better get another place sorted out PDQ (although we wouldn’t have known anything about it until after it was sold, had I not been working at home that day).
Well, we found another place and it seemed not-too-bad, if slightly on the pricey side. We explained our situation to the new landlord, and he assured us that he had no plans to sell the place, and that he was very happy to sign a nice, long, lease with us, so we paid out two months rent in advance and moved in. And a week later he left us a note saying that we had ten days to be out, because the place had just been sold. Yes, we did refer to the contract, the same standard contract that is used for all apartment rentals – and discovered that the estate agent had removed the section that gave us any recourse at all. No surprises that the owner was working in collusion with the agent, and that the victim was a stupid laowai.
Well, I’m going to skip through the next few days, because the point of the story is that we found another place nearby, and moved in. There’s not a lot of point in letting you know that every estate agent in the area had been made aware of our situation and tried to fuck us over, nor is there any point in going on about the fact that prices in the area suddenly went up overnight. Suffice to say, we found a place, got moved in, and that was that.
That was about a year ago.
Last week, we got a call from our current landlord. She asked whether we were happy, to which we replied that yes, we were very happy. Did we want to sign for another years rental? Oh yes, we replied, we like this place. Good, she said, in that case the rent goes up 40%.
So now we’re looking for a new place again, and I’m wondering why it always happens this way? For the longest time I thought it was merely the absurdly greedy and desperate desire that these mongrels all seem to have to be rich before lunch, without actually doing any work, or even getting out of bed in many cases. That, I knew was true. My landlady had certainly lost some money investing gambling in the stock market recently, and obviously wanted to recoup her losses from a stupid and rich laowai – no shocks there, either. But, I found myself wondering, is that it? Can that really be all there is to it? The the truth hit me – the reason that Chinese all try so hard to fuck us up at this time every year, is that they hate Christmas. Don’t believe me? Here’s why:
Ten Reasons Why The Chinese Hate Christmas
10. The Grinch was Chinese. He only lost because of a Conspiracy Against China.
9. If Rudolph & Co. flew over Chinese airspace, they’d be shot down.
8. Christmas is a time of goodwill to all men – Chinese never got that concept.
7. Christmas is a time for giving, not petty theft.
6. Chinese homes don’t have chimneys. Or fireplaces. Or heating. Or insulation.
5. There are no Christmas Trees in China – they’ve all been either cut down or killed by air and water pollution.
4. When an old Chinese man asks little children to sit on his knee and tell him what they want, it means he’s a paedophile.
3. Red is the colour of bloody revolution, not the clothing of fat, jolly, old men.
2. The angel on the tree doesn’t have the approval of the State Religious Affairs Bureau, in accordance with Order Number Five, and is therefore officially “illegal and invalid“. A bit like reincarnated Buddhists.
And finally, the Number One reason why Chinese hate Christmas:
1. Although lovable Santa Claus has the same Body Mass Index as dictator Mao Zedong, he doesn’t have anything like the same body odour, possibly because Santa Claus is on record as having had a bath more than once during his entire life, and Mao Zedong is on record as never having bathed, ever. The Chinese love Stinky Dictators.