Saturday, 22 February 2014

Apartment search, part I. Apartments available, no vacancy.

It sounds so lovely.  “In the heart of Cabbagetown”.  How the neighbourhood got its name, I don't know, but it is a quiet island in the middle of the city.  Nevertheless, I consider the description inaccurate.  It's not in the heart of Cabbagetown as such; it's under the heart of Cabbagetown.  The apartment is renovated enough, looks fresh and safe, and the landlord sounds convincing when he says they've invested in fixing it (it's part of their own house, after all).  Through one small window in a corner, it is almost possible to see the sky.  A basement apartment indeed.

On my way to the next place, I notice a sign saying “Apartments available”.  I ring the door for the superintendent.  After some minutes, he arrives.

“Do you have a work certificate and three certified cheques?”. 

”No, but I'm sure I could get those.  I work at the U of T.  Could I have a look at the apartment?” 

“No.  You need a work certificate and three certifite cheques.”

”Even just to look at the apartment?”

”Yes.  Bye.”

Further on my way to the Eglinton Avenue, I pass by a peculiar sign.

Apartments available, no vacancy.
Apparently, “available” does not mean what I think it means.

A long ride 1690 Eglinton Avenue.  A busy street.  When I finally arrive, there is clearly no apartment complex here.  Coincidentally, it is for rent.  But it's a small commercial location.  Then I realise that there is a 1790 Eglinton Avenue West, and 1790 Eglinton Avenue East.  I must be at the wrong one.  Ah well, it's only a 12.5 km bike ride between the two.  It starts out as a “reasonable” 4-lane highway, but it gets worse along the way.  At least they have a lane that is suggested for usage by cyclists:

The rightmost lane is suggested for cyclists...

Ultimately I decide to ride on the sidewalk.

The apartment I finally find is fine.  It's in a complex full of apartments, the price is reasonable, but... it's 12.5 km from work.  And those 12.5 km are, as in the photo, not the most cycle-friendly ones.  There doesn't seem to be any alternative.

The search goes on.

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