Friday, February 22, 2008

Minuscule Machinations


Apartment moving along....
Prina went to see it , camera at the ready.....

It is in the good lady's own words
it’s fantastic!! It is really class
Photos turned out as expected, no real suprises.
Bathroom is in existence... and lovely too... small but perfectly formed (much like myself)
And the bedroom..... well it lives up to its name... a room with a bed (and not much room for aught else!)
Still I'm not one for the swinger parties; at least not ones that end up on my bed... that's what the large sofa is for, so I'm happy enough.

Need to confirm the presence of washing machine and dryer (as advertised) as these are very important, and then its all systems go!

I'm interested to note that on the street (a bit down from me) is Cafe Chris
Amsterdam's oldest Brown Cafe Est 1624.
I read in a guidebook that its reputed to be where Rembrandt came to have his schnapps on the way from his studio to his home on Prinsengracht.

Also there is Pancake Bakery (which will serve as something of a Lemon replacement)
I'm looking forward to trying Poffertjes.

And look a lot like that up there!! :)
They are tiny pancakes (akin to Silver Dollar Pancakes)

So anyway....

Think I'm happy with the apartment, its really the location that is prime and the living space is great (aside from the minuscule bedroom) so..... on confirmation of the presence of washing machine facilities I'm a happy bunny.....

(PS Hello Cameron, who managed to find this blog while not being on Facebook or finding a link to it on a search engine (its de-listed) its a pleasure to keep you entertained with the inner machinations of my minuscule mind! Big Brother is watching eh? :P)

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Good News - Bad News

So.... following on from the apartment saga.... Episode IV!!

I got a call this morning from the agency... .
We have the keys, can we book an appointment for Wednesday
(Wednesday being the only day my friend is NOT in town)

Eh Wednesday is bad, could we make it Thursday?

We could but there are others who will want to see the apartment on Wednesday, it’s very popular.
(I love agency tactics)

Ok well what do you suggest?

We could hold the apartment for you.

Excellent, how would that work?

Well you could pay us the deposit..... and then it would be held.

Ok and if I didn’t like the apartment or if there was something wrong with it?

We would find you another....

So LEAP of faith... fuck it.... I paid the deposit (thanks Elaine) and Prina went to sign the letter of intent with the agency.

In fairness (yes i am nuts) but the sitting room and kitchen look great, the bedroom and bathroom can’t be that bad!! The location is perfect and the rent is ok... with bills included.

So ... yeah.... apartment done (I hope) keep the fingers crossed!! :)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Me no likey the Estate Agencies in Amsterdam

As I mentioned below; found a cool apartment on an agency listing ... it looks great.
Well the photos look great, annoyingly there are no photos of the bathroom or bedroom, but the sitting room and kitchen look lovely and it is central, with a washing machine and internet.
It’s pricey (well not really) but all the bills are included which is great.

Anyhow conversation went something like this

Called them on Friday and the girl there was very relaxed… said she’d send me more information on Monday.

Monday came no information.. so I called at lunch…. Oh you have to register, and no there are no other pictures.…

ok I said, I’ve tried to register on Friday and to pay by credit card.

Yes we have a fault with credit card machine… you need to do a bank transfer and re-register…..

So I leg it to the bank and come back,

Now you need to fax your passport and letter of offer….

So I do that.
Now is it all ok?

No sorry, the registration didn’t come through can you do it again….


Now is it all ok?


Excellent may I book a viewing (a friend works on the street the apartment is in and said she’d view it)


Why not?

I’ll have to call you back


So I wait and I stew a bit..... then I decide to call back as I am not sure why I cant make an appointment to see the apartment.

Much waiting on hold.....

Same lady... obviously now thinks I am some forma of lunatic.
Reason I can’t make an appointment?
We don’t have the keys and can’t get in touch with the person who is living there and moving out, as soon as we do i'll let you know.

That’s a little bit better.... she also said that no one else has viewed the apartment.

It’s a strange system they have, it seems to cost nothing to make an apartment available and the same apartment can be on several agencies books.
But to rent an apartment you must pay €40 to register with them, then if they "find you" an apartment you must pay them one months rent (+19% VAT) for their hard work.
Then you pay the usual one month rent deposit and one month rent in advance.

*fingers crossed*

I really like this apartment.

Amsterdam Bloemstraat

Originally uploaded by Siebrand

Fingers crossed I may be living on this street soon!

Found a lovely apartment on this cool street in the Centrum near the canals. Was talking to the agency on friday and hopefully will hear more today!


Sunday, February 17, 2008

Not long to go....

So not long now, 14 days (10 working ones) in Alliance Atlantis. Its amazing to think I'll have been there for 6 years!

I'm not sure if I had any expectations going into the job. Just needed away from the hell of the previous place and well something to get out of the house for as I had just broken up with someone.
In any event it was pretty much perfect (if a little rocky at first) but truly I'm not sure if an office can suit a person any better than that office suited me. After the many many many emails from the early jumpers will attest, I shall in their wake repeat, I have made friends there that I hope I will always have.

So having seen me through various chapters of my life from my cousin Kierans death, my grandmothers illness and eventual death, my relationship with Louise, my nephews babyhood (he's now five) and many many other chapters, it really was a rock for me. To go in there day after day to people who cared about me and who I cared about. I cant say we felt we set the world alight with what we did on a daily basis, but I know we all felt we did what we did brilliantly and had one hell of a laugh on the way.

From the wreckage of last Dec/Jan when we realised and digested the news of the sale and closure.. or transaction as we (didn't) like to call it, I have been given the opportunity to move to Amsterdam and work for CBS. Doing what, I'm not too sure, bit of this .. lot of that.... tad of the other I expect, but its an amazing chance and one that, for the most part (at least 72.4%) excited about.

I officially start on the 25th March and hope to move over on the 22nd March.

This, I'm hoping will be somewhere I can leave my thoughts of the experience.

Seeing as its now late... and there are many days to come... I'm off to bed!!!