Adventures in London

So I finally had a week in London. It’s been so busy, however, that I can hardly tell you what happened. Tuesday came Del’s belated birthday surprise – a trip to see the Lion King. That was certainly a worthy first step out, as any of you whom have seen it will know. It was also a friend’s birthday, and we met her before and after for a few drinks.It was nice to be in town for a birthday finally.

Beyond that, however, it’s been the errands of settling in. Actually, I should be on a flight to the US, since I have my first trip out of my new base tomorrow…but I was just so tired. Of course, it’s nothing compared to how tired I’ll be tomorrow, since my laziness today will result in an all-nighter tomorrow (since I have to fly to the US and then turn around and work right back here). But this “laziness” isn’t unjustified – I’ve been here a week and spent everyone of those days hobbling around on a sore foot because I had to try to get on the lease here, register at the dr’s office, try to get on hubby’s bank account, going to IKEA, building furniture….oh, and trying to put some of my clothes away – since hubby unloaded all the boxes I had so carefully labeled, to shoved my things pell-mell into the wardrobe shelving. (Er…thanks, honey.) I’m just exhausted and want to do email and photos (I still haven’t had time to re-do the photos that hubby messed up from Egypt in May!)

What else? Oh, we’ve been trying to get a new bed. You see, the place we’ve rented is furnished and everything is beautiful – except the bed. When I say that the mattress is bad, I mean it is so bad that the landlord should be embarrassed. There’s a sinkhole in the mattress. That’s right, a hole.  Take a look:

Can you see that, right across the center of the bed?! That’s just what shows through the sheets, with no one lying on it! But she has been adamant that we not change it. She’s a doctor; there’s no way she slept on this thing. We even offered to buy a new bed and give it to here when we leave, but we’d buy a size larger, and she refused. I don’t get her attachment to this thing. Anyhow, we eventually got the managing agency to see and they fully agreed it was unacceptable and convinced her to allow us to replace the mattress – at our own cost of course. (Plus, she felt it necessary to warn that we’d pay for any possible damages related to moving the old one out and new one in. Duh.)

I am also astonished at the process of opening a bank account here. Me being a foreigner – and technically a visiting one as of yet – I understand it not being easy for me. But just to open a bank account here, it was revealed to me that hubby had to disclose all sorts of information that I find excessive: profession, who he works for, monthly income, who pays his check, if he has cards/accounts at other banks, a pension, etc etc. If he were asking for a loan, of course. But this is apparently the norm for opening a simple account. Am I out of touch, or is this absurd? Del and I opened a joint account in DC and it required: some money, an address, ID…and that’s pretty much it.

I casually remarked on all the fuss and the bank representative couldn’t believe it was so easy in the US. What if you ask for loan? he asked. Well then you apply for a loan, and then you give such information. Besides, if Del were to suddenly ask for a loan, don’t you think they’d confirm the most up-do-date financials at that time anyway? If a bank is merely holding your money and giving it back as you need it, and it’s not a suspicious amount, why the 100 questions? It kinda gave me the creeps, just because I don’t really understand the need.

So there ya have it. My first days over here, and now another trip over there. I can’t wait to sit still for days in a row! Wish me luck tomorrow


1 Comment

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One response to “Adventures in London

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