Well, I almost didn't blog today, I've got so much to do, but then I can't do anything else but think about what I'm going to do with myself, so I don't get anything done anyway.
Basically, my two options are to find a place now, move in, and then fly away, or throw everything into a machsan (storage locker,) fly away, and deal with this when I come back home. The down side is that I can't do my full workload unless I have an internet connection, and I can't have an internet connection unless I have an apartment, so I may find myself stranded for a while when I come back unless I find something soon.
Time for a cost-benefit analysis:
Moving to Machsan = $200
Machsan = $200
Moving to new apartment = $200
Total = $600
Whereas, if I were to rent a place, let's say rent is $500 (minimum figure.) Figure since I'll be gone for a month anyway, if I were to move into a place now, one month's rent would be a total loss.
Moving to Apartment = $200
Rent = $500
Total = $700.
So it's basically a wash financially.
I went out to see a place in San Simon today. It was in an area that borders between the safe neighborhoods of Katamon and San Simon, and the not-safe neighborhoods out in Katmonim. But it was a great deal, $500 for 3 rooms. Catch is, it won't be ready until September 15th, after I fly away, so I'll have to drag all of my stuff to a machsan (storage locker) anyway. Not sure if I should take it or not. Apartments in Jerusalem go so fast that, at this point, now that it's been a full six hours since I was the apartment, it's probably gone anyway. The downside to this deal in San Simon is that the place is not available until the 15th, which would require me to rent out a machsan and move twice anyway.
I was mulling this deal when the landlady came by today and we straightened things out between us. We have this like-dislike (love-hate is too strong a term) thing. Last week she's the KGB, but this week she's seeming pretty friendly. I told her that I felt like they were trying to push me out by jacking up the rent from $450 to $550, and she said no, they weren't, they really like me, and rents have just gone up. She offered to reduce the rent to $525. That number also includes water and electricity, which can come out to quite a bit on its own, but usually less than $100. Fact is, it's still not such a great deal, but it would be nice to avoid the hassle of moving, setting up my internet connection from scratch, missing a couple weeks of work doing so, etc.
She said I have a day to decide, because tomorrow is the deadline for putting an ad in the paper. The fact she said this seems to indicate to me that the ad I saw online, which I thought was for my place (indicating to me they had already decided to remove me, so I had better get packing,) was, in fact, for some other place on my street. I was talking to someone here over shabbat, and it turns out that a lot of people on this street rent out, in spite of the fact they all own these massive mansions. There's something to be learned from this about assuming the best/worst of people. One more thing to do tshuva for in the month of Elul.
Basically, one of the morals of this story is that it really stinks when you plan a vacation for the same time your lease ends. Next year, vacation time comes early. Live and learn.
To summarize, my options are as follows:
1. Stay in my apartment in Pisgat Ze'ev near my friends and family here.
2. Find a different apartment in Pisgat Ze'ev near my friends and family here.
3. Move to the Katamon/Baka area where all the singles live but I don't know anyone. Pay a fortune and make new friends.
4. Move to a place peripheral to the Katamon/Baka area like San Simon, a sightly seedier district. Save on rent and make new friends.
5. Find a place in Kiryat Moshe (next to Machon Meir.) I know people, rents are better, I wouldn't have to drive to yeshivah and back every day. But there's no singles scene.
6. Throw all my stuff in a machsan and then deal with this problem when I come back during Sukkot.
One fact I have to keep in mind here: if a deal is good enough to show up once, it's good enough to show up again.
The problem I'm encountering is my own indecisiveness. I've got too many options, and too much stress surrounding my upcoming trip to America, too much work to do (I have two major projects due on Friday.)
Here are some shots I took last winter at my Yeshivah, in Kiryat Moshe:
Daniel (from Holland) and Ephraim (from Germany/Greece)