Thursday, June 05, 2008

Okay, this seriously stinks.

So along with every other load of bricks that got dropped on us, metaphorically speaking, at the beginning of the summer break, our air conditioning broke. (Yup, two weeks after the home warranty expired.) Which hasn't been tooooo much of a problem yet because the weather here in Provo seems to be convinced that it's, say, March or October instead of May and June. So we've been all right while we're waiting until we can scrape up enough money to fix it as long as we leave some windows open.

Until now.

Our little townhouse faces west onto a fence, on the other side of which is a trainyard. So lots of trains going past and making a fair amount of noise, so we try to leave the windows on the front of the house closed. This is fine because downstairs we have a big kitchen window in the back which lets in a lot of fresh air, as well as two big office windows in the back upstairs. These three windows have been doing a good job of controlling the lack-of-AC situation, with help from the fan in our bedroom.

Until my next-door neighbor started sitting on the back step and smoking a few days ago. Since these are townhouses, their back step is approximately 7 feet away from our back step. We of course have a fence separating the backyards, but it doesn't keep smoke out of our backyard. Or, by extension, out of our back windows. Or, by further extension, out of my house and out of my lungs.

Our house is an end unit so we also have two large south-facing windows downstairs, but we try to leave these closed because 1) the air on that side is much warmer and doesn't help the cooling off so much and 2) a road runs right past them which also doesn't help as much with the noise. Aside from these, we have one other tiny window in the upstairs bathroom -- and I mean tiny -- which we keep open all the time but which can't do the job all by itself.

So now I'm faced with several unappealing options:

1. Keep the back windows open and poison my already-gimpy lungs with second-hand smoke.
2. Close the back windows, open the front ones and go deaf from passing train screeching.
3. Open the side windows and fry while letting in car noise and exhaust (best of both worlds, I guess).
4. Leave all windows closed and die in the ensuing stifling heat.

Unfortunately, 5. Fix the stinking AC is not an option at the moment unless some long-lost rich uncle dies and leaves us a lot of cash. (Thanks to the law school for making all the students not work during the school year, then do unpaid internships during the summer and then not providing us with access to any sort of financial aid. Also thanks to the stupid AC for procrastinating and missing that warranty deadline. Oh, and let's not forget the car breaking down, the mortgage company making unauthorized withdrawals from our account, or having our one source of income start bouncing the checks they send us.)

Murphy, you stink.


Lost in Translation said...

Oh, my gosh! I am so sorry to hear about your series of unfortunate events! I feel terrible for you. When I get back and can clean my apartment, we'll have you over to our tiny freezing basement apartment. You can get nice and chilled and go back home and come out of the permafrost.

I understand the smoking thing, though. I swear all of my neighbors here in France smoke. And I'm on the top floor, so all the smoke rises. When it's hot at night, I want to open the window but I have to smell Parisians slowly blackening their lungs.

Lady Type said...

I guess that option number 6 would be to tell your neighbor to QUIT FREAKING SMOKING! Doesn't he know that smoking kills?

Poor Ellie... *mimimimimimi*