Sunday, December 6, 2009

Scary Day

Today was the first day that I felt scared being here.Nothing big happened really, but being here on my own in a country where I do not speak the language and don't know how things work...well, it was scary!

I was ready to move out of my apartment by 12:00, my bags were packed and so was my suitcase. I knew a driver was coming to get me to take me to the office, then to the new apartment. I had told the rental place that I needed help since I had a few bags, they said the driver would come to my door to help me out.

At 12:00 the doorbell rang, it was the housekeeper. She came in, I thought, no big deal, the driver will be here soon. A few minutes later, the doorbell rang again. I went to the door, and about 4 people are standing there, talking to me fast. I obviously do not understand. "English?" I ask, I guess not, so I got the housekeeper, and they walked right in. They saw all my bags packed, and even though I don't understand Russian, I know what they were saying. They pointed at them, pointed at me, and pointed me towards the door, speaking, basically saying, "Get out of here, this is our apartment!" Because they were then pointing at themselves.
I did not move, no way am I leaving and being left out in the street, also, I could not possibly get all my luggage out on my own. (I had all my groceries in bags)

More people walked in, all talking to me, "get out of here." I did not move. Finally another man walked in. A lady talked to him, then she said to me, "Your driver, you go." Oh, so maybe someone did speak English. So we left, he helped me out, he did not speak English. In the elevator there were 2 people that had been in the apartment. They spoke some English, they were actually kind of friendly, why not talk to me in the apartment?

In the car, a lady came and asked for the key to the apartment. I told her I was told to return it at the office. She said no, give it to her, they were told I would give them the key. Well, I did, hoping that was okay, the driver motioned for me to give it to her.

Back in the office I walk in. First thing I hear. "We have a problem, the man in your apartment was supposed to leave, but he just called and said he is not moving, he likes the apartment and he wants to stay." Okay, what does that mean, right? "Don't worry, we told him he cannot stay, he is finally agreed to move out. We will take you there and you can drop of your luggage and get out of there so he can keep packing." What? "Sorry?" I asked, "I am not comfortable with that."
"Okay," she said, "We will then drop you off at the door and you will wait there until he is done and the housekeeper is done cleaning, it should take about 2 hours."

What? Yes, this is when I wanted to cry. They though the other solution was to leave me out in the street? "No," I said, "I will call my friends." I called the Rundstrums and told them what was happening. Kim told me to come over and they would later take me to the apartment. They live on the same street, just a few blocks down the road.

So I told the lady at the office to take me there. When she told the driver, he responded that if he took me there, I had to pay him, $50! And that is in USD. What! When he saw my face, he must have said, no, maybe he was trying to get money, let's take advantage of the American, at least it felt that way. Now, please know, he had been very nice to me, very polite and extremely helpful, he really is a nice man, but he might have thought a little extra money would be nice? But he said fine, I will take her for free because of the inconvenience of her situation. So he would have left me on the street for free, but a few extra blocks for money?

I paid for the apartment. They were supposed to give us credit because our rfiend Frank has paid until Wednesday and they had said we could have his credit for the days that had been paid. No, not so much. She said I had to pay all. I did.

We walked back to the car. As you can imagine, I was fighting tears, praying all along. I know God was right there with me, but this was one time that I wish I had someone to physically hold my hand and hear the words, "it is okay."

I got to the Rundtroms, fighting tears. It was wonderful to see Kim's face, a friendly face. A safe face.

Came back to the apartment. No internet, it is not clean, just picked up. Smells terrible, cigarette smoke. Took a walk to a coffee shop so I could skype with Andy. I came back and tried Andy's trick we learned from Frank. It worked, I have internet.

Today I miss my husband. Today I wish I had someone with me.

As I am here, will you pray for protection? I know this was not a big deal, but when you are on your own, it can be very scary, and the tears come easily, very easily.


jransom said...

Ellen, I read your post today and I am in tears. I feel so bad for you, but I know God is with you. I will pray for your protection and that the days will go fast so you can get back to the United States with Nina! God Bless

Zack, Jenn and William said...

Ellen, praying that God brings you comfort and surrounds you with people and feelings that will carry you through these last few days.

Leah said...

Oh man! I'm sorry to hear that's how your day went! What is God's lesson in this? I think from reading your post I can see part of it. You were nervous about being on your own. God allowed some things to happen so you can say, "Hey! I made it through that ordeal all on my own!" (well, we know you weren't "alone, because HE was with you, but you know what I mean.) Be confident in the Lord! When you're struggling to get through a sticky situation remember....just like you did...that he is holding your hand, and be CONFIDENT in HIS strength and guidance.

Shea said...

Poor thing! We had a bit of a time when we got to Estonia. The phone would not work to call the people waiting at the apt. Then we could not get into the apt because the buzzer thing would not work. Then after asking two people on the street at night, one let us use the phone to call them to buzz us in. We eventually bought internet from the neighbor. I hope everything else goes wonderful and easy for you!