My bathtub is clogged. Sometimes, it takes over thirty minutes to drain completely, leaving shower gel residue around the rim of the drain. It bothers me no end, it makes me upset and worried. I have poured more Draino down the, well, draino than is good for the environment. I have prayed. I have google searched. I have done everything short of calling a plumber. The damn bathtub remains firmly clogged up, as if holding on determinedly to all the Queen and Journey songs that I have sent its way over the last two years. What? What else are you supposed to sing in the shower? Katy blooming Perry? Not on my turf, you don't.
This should not bother me as much as it does. I consider this a personal failing, concealing it from visitors, forbidding house guests from enjoying the excellent water pressure, sending them to the other bathroom instead. Sometimes, after a shower, I stand in the pool that is ankle-deep these days, and sigh dramatically. It does nothing, but at least I feel like I'm trying. At least I'm not giving up and conceding my place as the master and purveyor of my own fucking bathroom.
The rest of the house, it functions. Well, there is that issue with the kitchen light, but I have worked around it and it is no longer a hassle as long as I flick the switch super-fast-like a few times. I am also not a massive fan of the mouldy storage cupboard in the hall leading to the bedrooms but if I keep it shut and keep my belongings away from it, I can pretend it doesn't exist. But the bathtub! I can't ignore it, I can't pretend I don't need it, I can't just let it go the way I let go of my resentment of the dim 'chandelier' in my bedroom. The bathtub is a necessity and I suspect it knows that. No other reason for being so obstinately uncooperative.
And then I hear the news that they are tearing down my building. It is, after all, over 30 years old. It is too big, too old, too grand to remain next to the shiny new neighbours with their boxy gleaming rooms, stainless steel kitchens and unclogged bathtubs. I must move out by the end of the month and so the search starts for a new house. On my list of requirements? Gas hobs (none of that electric plate nonsense), balcony or a rooftop, built-in closets and a bathtub with industrial-strength plumbing and drainage.
It has been a week now. A week of stumbling around the city, viewing flats smaller than my useless storage cupboard, balconies with just enough room for two potted plants and a pair of legs, abysmally tiny kitchens which couldn't possibly handle me and my food at the same time. I have viewed flats where stretching a leg would be enough to transport you from the living room to the bed should you wish to take a nap. It has all been quite disheartening and vaguely disturbing.
And so, last night, when I came back to my own luxurious, 1500 square foot mansion, I sighed in relief at the thought of having to walk more than two steps to enter my bedroom. A few more weeks, that is all I have. A few more weeks to operate out of the storage closet so I can get used to a smaller house. A few more weeks to cook up feasts to last the entire length of my next lease. And most importantly, a few more weeks to wade through my own personal swimming pool. Life has a funny way of putting problems into perspective. Until next time, my friends.
Nizamuddin: a meditation
6 days ago