Who you gonna call?!? (Aimee)
Hello there blog-readers and other life forms!
I hope you’re well and feeling on top of exams/work/life in general. At least, I hope exams/work/life aren’t on top of you! (It’s okay, they’re on top of me too – ssh, don’t tell anyone…) Today I thought I’d embrace my inner journalist and give you an exposé. That’s right! Today, I’m going to give you all the dirt (literally and metaphorically!) on living in a share-house.
It’s a hard but inevitable truth that when you move into cheap lodgings with several other messy and confused young people, it can feel like living in a third world country. For starters, you have the conventional hiccups. By these I mean the zoo of uninvited pests, the various species of mold growing on the walls and the frequent house-fires. (Our kitchen has caught alight so many times this year that if you announce, “THE STOVE’S ON FIRE!!!” the most you’ll get by way of response is, “I’ll be down in a minute…”)
To these we must add the food-shortages, which I guess, aren’t that surprising, given the complete lack of kitchen competence. In case you’re wondering, the two-minute noodle stereotype is absolutely true! Yet, I’ve seen some more creative solutions to an empty food cupboard. One day, when he’d run out of both microwavable meals and milk, my housemate dined on a bowl of weetbix with Up & Go for lunch, followed by a loaf of frozen garlic bread for dinner. Parents’ reactions to these teething problems are always interesting… The more devoted types will arrive at your door every week with care-packages of soap and frozen dinners alla Red Cross. Others keep well clear, in the hope that the ‘little darlings’ will sort it out for themselves.
So much for the boring stuff… But what is an independent student supposed to do about the utterly unexpected – nay – ridiculous? What, for example, do you say when you can’t sit on the toilet because, last week, your housemate stood on it and snapped the seat in half? (Apparently, he wanted to see what his hair looked like from the back!) What becomes of diplomatic relations when housemate A wants revenge because housemate B ate all his peanut butter? Then, while avenging himself, he accidentally eats all of housemate C’s vegemite, by mistake!
This might make share-house living sound a bit anarchic… which, to be honest, it is! But a journalist should consider both sides of the story. So, it would be remiss of me not to tell you about the magical side of becoming a housemate…
A while back, my very humble abode was disturbed by blood-chilling screams. The noise was coming from Housemate B’s bedroom. First on the scene was Housemate C, who thought that Housemate B had been bitten by the mouse and was bleeding to death.
“Is everything alright?”
More screaming. I followed, thinking there had been a murder.
“Do you need help??”
Housemate B’s screams became sobs. Lucky last came Housemate A.
“What’s all the noise about!?”
Housemate B continued to cry hysterically.
“ARE YOU OKAY???” bellowed the other three.
“NOOOO, I’M NOT OKAY!!” yelled Housemate B at last. “I JUST SPILLED BLACK TEA ALL OVER MY BED… AND THE BED’S ALL WHITE!!!”
The housemate rescue team sprung into action. In a mad rush, I grabbed some paper towels, Housemate C changed the sheets and Housemate A turned on the washing machine. Housemate B stood back, wiping her eyes and hiccuping, “Thank you… I love you guys!!”
It was only after the initial panic died down that we noticed Housemate B’s laptop. Skype had been left open. There, on the screen, was the smiling face of Housemate B’s boyfriend. He had been sitting there the whole time, watching on serenely, while his lady-friend and her housemates ran rings around each other.
It’s irrefutable that a bunch of naive and vulnerable adolescents, stranded in a crummy flat, spells chaos. The wonderful thing is, when you’re in a share-house, you and your fellow inmates bond over your shared vulnerability and naiveté. After all… who will be there with a congratulatory doughnut when you score an H1 or a big tub of ice-cream when you’ve been dumped? Who will run to your side when you need love to depend on or a shoulder to cry on? Who you gonna call?
The answer is simple. Your housemates. Every single time.