A year in the life of living abroad. La vie parisienne.
Friday, September 10, 2010
Bathroom Weather Forecast: Rain
Last night, after getting the girls put to bed at midnight, I logged onto my computer to see if Soren was available for a Skype chat. He was. I was eager to tell him about the Kaplan dinner party. I told him I would skype him in a few minutes, I wanted to get ready for bed first. As I was brushing my teeth, I heard that it was raining outside. I quickly realized the impossibility of my logic; we live in a ground floor apartment. It is not possible for me to hear rain drops on my bathroom ceiling. Next, I heard drip-drops coming from inside Soren's side of the medicine cabinet. I moved the sliding mirrors over to my side of the vanity to reveal water pouring from the ceiling down onto his medicine cabinet shelves. I quickly grabbed a towel and tried to block the flow of water. The towel became drenched in seconds and I was in a precarious position as I had climbed up onto the countertop in my attempt to reach the ceiling. If I let go of the towel and got down, water would flow more freely. I, in the meantime, was beginning to get wet. This is because water was now dripping out of the ceiling's light sockets and drenching the entire bathroom vanity, floor, and all of our sundries and toiletries in the process. I ran to the kitchen to get bowls to try to capture the water and contain it. No luck. I then scrambled to remove all of the contents from the shelves, but where to put them? I tossed them into the only dry part of the bathroom, ironically, the bathtub. It was still raining and I did not know what kind of water this was. I opened my bedroom window with the hope that it really was raining outside so that I could convince myself that this was just rainwater leaking into our bathroom and not some other kind of water. Not a rain drop in sight outside. Not good. From noises that I have heard, I am pretty certain that the upstairs neighbor's bathroom is directly over ours. I am not at all happy to be thinking about what kind of water is dripping on our bathroom and now me. What to do? In a moment of clarity, I grabbed my digital camera and took a video (two actually, but I am only allowing you to see the first brief one because, in the second video, I captured myself in the mirror and I am saving you from seeing me in all my getting-ready-for-bed glory). Truthfully, the video does not do justice to just how much water was actually flowing out of every possible hole and crevice. Next, I sent an IM to Soren who is in a hotel room in Chicago. Alarmed, he wanted to Skype right away so he could see for himself this downpour. So, with laptop in hand, I proceeded back to the bathroom to show him this mess. Except that my laptop was getting rained on, and so was I, so I did not give him a good long look. By now, I was also worried about the fact that water is coming into contact with the light fixtures. I did not want to stay in the bathroom. He instructed me to go wake up the apartment building manager. As much as I knew this was the logical thing to do under these circumstances, I resisted. I was panicked about waking her up because she does not speak any English, I do not know what her role here actually is, and since this is a country of so many rules, I did not want to break another one. I think that bathroom rain constitutes an emergency, but what if one of France's unwritten rules is, no waking up apartment managers in the middle of the night under any circumstance? As Soren was trying to convince me to dig deep and have the courage to do what must be done, I realized that it had stopped raining. Drip drops were still flowing, albeit more slowly, but the sound of rain on our ceiling had ceased. "Please let it be over!" I thought. It seems as though it was. My best guess is that the upstairs neighbor was taking a midnight shower and there is a leak in the pipe. As long as it's not eau de toilette I will be somewhat relieved. Yes, I looked at the color and I smelled it. I'm still sticking with the conclusion of shower water. Mainly so that I can sleep tonight, rather than that I am truly convinced of this conclusion. To be continued...