Sunday, October 6, 2013

Scored BIG on an apartment!!!

I have some REALLY exciting updates to share with you all. The first one being that.....I secured an apartment!!! This turned out to be an incredible surprise and an absolute jackpot find.  A young Czech woman with whom I have been connected in Prague (via a friend of mine in Boston who I met at Tufts Medical Center) told me recently (after we met for tea/pastries a couple weeks ago) that her father is renting out a room within his flat and if I am interested, she would show it to me. I had been thinking of trying to live with a classmate of mine, as mentioned in a previous post (my fellow pastry loving buddy). However I figured, why not, I might as well go take a look even though I was thinking I would likely not be interested as I thought I would be living with my classmate. The second I stepped into the flat though, I realized how wrong I had been to have hesitated in seeing it, and how close I had come to missing the flat of a lifetime!

First off, this apartment is a mere 5-6 minute walk away from Old Town Square, the central hub of Prague which is prime real estate location. It would be similar to living in Back Bay or on Beacon Hill in Boston. The area right around my apartment is quiet though, lots of little cobble stoned courtyards lined with benches and fountains in the middle, romantic dimly lit cafes, it’s a charming and beautiful area. The flat is within a large apartment building, but upon walking inside the actual flat, it's like entering a small house!! The ceilings are grand and high, the apartment is bright, huge and spacious. It's very big, while at the same time feeling homey and cozy. There is a long entryway, a living room/library, a dining room, a lofty kitchen equipped with all types of pans I could possibly need, an oven, dishwasher, microwave, my own fridge, etc. There is a washing machine and dryer available for my use. I get my own bedroom which is furnished simply (a large bed, desk and dressers) but nicely, and my very own bathroom connected to that bedroom. Wifi and all utilities are included.  There are huge (basically) floor-to-ceiling windows in my bedroom which take up one entire wall, so my room is cozy and bright. I have an area to hang all of my clothes.

My room (plus the next 6 photos that room and my bathroom)

The person I will be living with is my Czech friend's father, his name is Vladimir (Vlad for short). He is a very sweet older man with whom I can totally see myself sitting and chatting with while having tea.
All in all, I LOVE this apartment. It was an incredible find. It's unlikely I will find something this stellar for this price ever again (and in this location!! That part I really cannot get over). It is the cheapest rent I have ever paid before in my life, by far! And it's one of the best places I will have ever lived.
I moved in just yesterday actually.
In other news, I am 100% DONE with TEFL.  Friday was our last day, after which we had a graduation party.  And whew, good god was the TEFL course intense overall.  It certainly was not hard, but it was just a LOT at once.  Probably the most I have ever had going on at once before, ever.  We had to plan a lesson every single day (which took anywhere from 1-3 hours), we also had homework sometimes, we taught every night until 7:30pm, so we were often not home until between 8 and 8:30pm at night (we had been in school from 9:30am-8pm).  And then we also had to be: searching for apartments, applying for jobs, getting prepared to submit all the paperwork for our work permit and visa, while also finding some bits of time to try and relax slightly.  This was literally all happening at once.  It was incredibly busy.  So I am really looking forward to that whirlwind now being done.
On the flip side though, while I do have a home secured, I do not have a job.  That is a very, very unsettling feeling (especially being combined with my dwindling bank account).  It's a feeling I have never experienced before, and it is not a good one.  The past couple days, I have been HIGHLY motivated looking for jobs (teaching, babysitting and even a few corporate jobs), creating my own website to advertise for private lessons, signing up on to look for jobs that way, etc.  I am going to make things happen, in terms of income and building up a teaching career as quickly as I possibly can!  Keep your fingers crossed for me!

In other happy news, this past weekend was a great one!  With the exception of Friday night, the evening of our graduation party, during which I had a bit too much to drink ha ha.  However the rest of this weekend was wonderful.  My close friend from Germany came to visit again.  We had a great time together. He helped me move all my huge suitcases from my old flat to this new one, helping with hauling everything up the stairs with me and even having rented a car and having driven 4.5 hours one way here to see me.  On Saturday we got an inexpensive but absolutely delicious Mexican food lunch and then walked around Prague during the afternoon.  On Sunday we cooked lunch together in my new apartment kitchen!!  So much fun!!

He just left about 4 hours ago, and since he left I have spent the evening unpacking my entire room (now it actually feels organized and homey).  BIG sigh of relief.  I have not unpacked any of my things for the past 5 weeks.  It feels amazing to finally be unpacked and have a place to unwind a bit and know where all my things are.  I even put together an awesome photo collage on my wall of all the people I love <3 Every time I look at it, I smile.

And then for the past couple hours, I have been continuing to market myself online big time, applying for jobs and Skyping with people (my Dad, my Mom and two of my best friends from back in the US of A).

This week I plan to hoof it big time in terms of getting out and continuing to look for jobs!  Wish me luck!!!

Ciao for now, friends and family!

“When you walk to the edge of all the light you have and take that first step into the darkness of the unknown, you must believe that one of two things will happen. There will be something solid for you to stand upon or you will be taught to fly.” 

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