Whenever I tell any Thai person how much I pay monthly for my rent, they can't believe how expensive my apartment building is. I am sure they envision a gigantic room with a flat-screen television, a jacuzzi in the bathroom, and all electronical devices controlled via robotic arms that emerge from the walls when I press the bloop-bloop buttons on the wall.
Well, yes, I pay 4000 Baht a month for rent, and you pay 2000 Baht a month for rent, Thai people. And yet, I still have some concerns about the state of my posh, high-society condo. In fact, here are some pressing questions I've got for my landlord and for the ownership of the Chomdoi Condotel:
1. Why does my shower never get above lukewarm?
2. Why do I have to hold down the handle on my toilet for fifteen seconds before it will flush? And why does this only work about 75% of the time?
3. Why did the showerhead and faucet-head not come with little caps to put over them so that they didn't just shoot out water in random directions? What happened to these caps?
4. Where are all these ants coming from?
5. The apartment building has two elevators. For a month, one of the elevators was broken. While that one was still broken, the other one broke, too. After about a week, the first elevator was fixed. Now, it's been a month since the second elevator shut down, and it's still closed. How hard is it to fix an elevator? Is the sign that says "24-HOUR ELEVATOR REPAIR SERVICES" that has been hanging in front of the broken elevator for the past several weeks a cruel joke, and, if so, at what point will you stop laughing at it?
6. Which Indiana Jones movie had just come out when the television in my room was built? Was it "Temple of Doom"? I'm betting on "Temple of Doom."
7. How many ants would you say is an acceptable number of ants to have killed in the past two minutes? If you said anything less than "seven ants," then you are wrong.
8. Why does getting onto my balcony involve straddling a sharp metal bar and easing my groin over to the other side until I am onto the balcony? Is there a way to get onto my balcony that doesn't involve shredding my scrotal sac? A complimentary step-ladder of some sort, perhaps?
9. Seriously, that piece of fabric that came with the sheets and the pillow cases--is that a blanket or a bath towel?
10. Can I get a discount for any of these things? Say, 1 Baht an ant?
11. Okay, 0.33 Baht per ant, to be collected in a container of my choosing.
12.. A container of your choosing. 0.25 Baht.
13. An ant just crawled out of my keyboard, in between the "y" and the "t." That will be 0.18 Baht, please.