He asked me if I like fruit.
  • He asked me if I like fruit.

Title: Doing is King

Address: doingisking.blogspot.com

Author: Alzano Edullega

From: San Diego

Blogging since: August 2012

Post Title: Rent in San Diego

Post Date: August 21, 2012

The tourist attractions of a city are like the nice shirt people wear to parties. The real estate market is like the underwear. One doesn’t have to match the other. So I was eager to explore the rent space in San Diego, now that I planned to stay here for at least one month.

I opened Craigslist.org, which is always a creepy experience, and started to browse around. The offers were overwhelming. But the prices were very good, especially if you just wanted a studio.

First I went to a zone with the uninviting name of Cajon (the drawer). As scary as it may be for some people, it’s still a nice poor neighborhood. Yes, there are old cars and humble houses, but there is also order and enough cleanliness. That’s the difference between poverty and decadence. In my country of origin, poor, nasty, and insecure were pretty much the same thing. Here, you can separate the concepts. I love this country and I find virtue even in its failures.

What pushed me out of this part of the city was the “culture” factor. The room for rent was in a neighborhood full of children who were yelling and running around. That alone told me that I won’t make the deal, but I inspected the place anyway. The room had a balcony with clear reception of the music played by the neighbors, a Mexican combination of country/fair band that they call “banda.” I think that music is the best reason to leave this planet. I said, “Thank you for your time,” and ran to my car.

The next candidate was a room in a mansion at the top of a hill. Things looked pretty good, and the owner waited for me in his Audi in a spot nearby. He asked me to follow him to his house, and we entered a spacious front yard with trees. But then the guy got out of the car. He was a 60-year-old, tall white man, drunk as if he had been to a bachelor party and dirty as if he had been taking a nap in a dumpster. He smelled the same way he looked. Turning to me, he opened his sleepy eyes and invited me to come in. We passed through the main entrance of a very elegant and furnished home that seemed to have been totally without maintenance for at least six months. He showed me the way to the kitchen; it offered a full view of a half-full pool. That place was the epicenter of the mess. At that point, the tall man turned around and I noticed that he had a knife in his right hand. Then I noticed that he had an orange in his left hand. He asked me if I liked fruit.

We sat at a glass table and he conducted a general interview to see if I was a wordy renter. At the end of the orange he showed me the way to the room. It was situated in a cozy corner with its own bathroom. There was a bra hanging from the shower. He told me that his 20-year-old daughter just moved out a couple of days ago. Then a call interrupted him. Some kind of broker was trying to negotiate a price. After that he explained to me that we might have to leave some days to let the real estate agent show the house.

I had no idea what was happening in that life, but I didn’t want to be part of it. So I walked away.

I’m now in a comfortable apartment with an independent entrance and bathroom, just 15 minutes from downtown. A friendly Mexican couple rented it to me and let me move in the same day. No traces of “banda” around. There seems to be a Philippine neighbor, and I love how quiet everything is so far. I swear, it’s so silent that there is less noise outside than inside, and the only sound inside is the fridge.

You place your chips, you roll the dice, and you collect. The only difference is that in real life, you never know the extent of the bet.

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Comments

Javajoe25 Oct. 3, 2012 @ 6:20 p.m.

I could not agree with you more, Alzano; San Diego's real estate market is definitely like the underwear--the people you speak to are often full of sh....well, let's just say they are stinky.

It is good that you find virtues in our failures. There is so many, we must look very virtuous in your eyes. And you are completely right to say "The Drawer," (Cajon) is a nice, poor neighborhood with order and enough cleanliness. I think it could use a little more cleanliness, but enough is better than not.

I think you should give Banda music another chance. Or, you might like Norteno, which is similar but with more of a story, usually about someone who was a killer or was killed. Otherwise you can try Rap or House Music which can be nauseatingly loud and repetitive, but I say "to each, his own," regardless of how worthless.

I started to feel I was in the Land of Oz when you said the man showed you the room at the end of the orange. You make it sound like such a delectable place to live. Although I was happy to read you did not rent a room from that 60-year old drunk, dirty, smelly white man. You have to be careful with people like that. Especially if they have a knife in their hand.

So, did you find a place in "The Drawer"? You were lucky to find a nice Mexican couple to rent from. The Mexicans are very interesting people. If you listen carefully, you will hear them speak Spanish. The women are very compassionate, but the men might chop your head off. Also, the men usually can whistle very loud and usually eat standing up.

I hope you enjoy your stay in San Diego, Alzano. You did not say which country you were from, but I am sure it also has some very nice things about it and also has enough cleanliness.

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