Friday, November 02, 2007

noise

Because I grew up in a rather quiet neighbourhood, I never experienced noisy neighbours. How could I have guessed that noisy people would affect me so much? The One usually sleeps through all the noise. I wish I had that ability.

When we were still searching for somewhere to live, we were told by the estate agent for Riviera Close, Amanda, that the complex was a very quiet and peaceful place. I can't believe that I actually listened to an estate agent! Aren't they the most mendacious people on earth? No, come to think of it, lawyers are. Estate agents are in a close second position. But I digress.

We have come across a variety of noisemakers in our seven moths of residence here.

The first noisemakers we had the misfortune to encounter were the people living in unit J01. I think it's two men and a woman living there, but I'm not too sure. When looking down from our balcony, they are on the ground floor of the block to the right of the block across from us. Only two weeks after we moved in, they had a huge party which lasted until 2 o'clock in the morning. They played the same song over and over on their stereo which they had put on the lawn. Around 11 o'clock the party moved indoors but the people kept coming outside, banging the door loudly every time. Besides, the music was playing as loudly indoors as it had been outdoors so there wasn't much of a difference. I assume it was a house warming party. Since that party, they have been reasonably quiet, only carrying out their stereo from time to time to play loud music on the lawn. But that usually doesn't last into the early hours.

Next comes the guy that lives in unit F201, which is the block of apartments right next to ours. Our front doors face one another. Rae, a medical student, specializes in having drunken student nights and likes leaving his front door wide open so that everyone can share in the debauchery. He has a friend who starts yelling "Rae, Rae" as soon as he gets out of the car and doesn't stop until he sees his friend. Once, Rae had a vicious fight with his girlfriend in the middle of the night. After shouting at her loudly (the front door was open, of course), he ran out and sat crying pitifully on the stairs for a while. He has no car, so his mother brings him groceries once in a while. Sometimes weeks go by without Rae living in his apartment. He has actually been very quiet for these last few weeks. It must be because he is writing exams.

Now we come to the big guns. The noisiest people by far are the lot living in unit F01, which is in the apartment block next to ours, on the ground floor. As far as I know it's only two of them living there, a man and a woman, but it is hard to say because of their constant stream of visitors. Our stairwell stops at their front door; the stairwell is an excellent amplifier for their every noise. And they are noisy, believe me. Hardly a night passes without them having some or other celebration. On weekends, especially the ones that fall at the end of the month, these people start partying on a Friday evening and carry on right through up to Sunday evening at 11 o'clock. They play loud music, shout and drink beyond all limits. They even party in the parking area sometimes, sitting on their little camping chairs right in between the cars. Usually one of them opens their car's boot and play music loudly on their car stereo. They become so drunk that they lose any sense of decency, urinating in the garden and shouting wildly. It is a miracle that they have not been thrown out of the complex. I suppose they have the right connections.

The next noisemaker is Wessel. He lives in unit I202, which is in the apartment block directly opposite ours. Our balconies face one another. This overweight medical student likes having parties in the early hours with his friends on the balcony, drinking to excess. When they have become dead drunk, they shout all kinds of obscenities, play idiotic Afrikaans songs loudly and laugh uproariously, waking everything within a ten mile radius. When South Africa won the Rugby World Cup, Fatso, as we have come to call Wessel, drank wildly and for the rest of the night came out on his balcony every so often to shout (at the top of his lungs): "Bokke! Bokke!". He only stopped at 6 o'clock the next morning after passing out.

The final little noisemaker is our next door neighbour in unit E204. When we first moved in, we hardly knew someone was living next to us, she was that quiet. But then one Saturday night she had a wild party that only stopped at 5 o'clock in the morning. As she returned from seeing off her noisy guests, I confronted her, but she simply ignored my glare and ran into her apartment. She hasn't had a party since. No, she has another speciality now. She goes out around eleven most nights and then returns at around 2 o'clock. We call her the ho' because of this (work it out for yourself). In any case, when she comes home at that time, she likes to open the lock of her security gate with a bang, loudly slamming both the gate and the front door shut again. It never fails to wake me up. Of course, going back to sleep again after being woken up with a shock like that is next to impossible. Besides, I can hear her through the paper thin wall between the apartments, moving about, her stiletto heels clicking on the tile floors.

It is not only the noisemakers that make our lives difficult. The idiots we live with also like parking on our allocated parking space. It is incredible that people are too stupid to realize that every apartment has a specific parking spot. Ours is one of the most popular since it is the one closest to the stairs. If we use the car, even if it is only for a few minutes, we can be sure that our parking will have been taken by the time we return.

I cannot believe that I have become such a resentful person. When I have been woken up by theses noisy idiots, I lie awake and hatch evil little plans of how I'm going to sabotage their lives. Of course, I haven't acted on any of these dark fantasies of mine. Yet.

Our rental contract expires on the 31st March of next year. I cannot wait to move out of this place, but this time I will first spend an entire weekend at the end of the month at our new home. Just to make sure we don't put our heads into another hornet's nest.

Written by I
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