Day 154 of self-isolation and Day 15 of being displaced.
So I’m still stuck here at Tien’s apartment after we were evacuated. Back at my own apartment, the power is on, but the water and gas are still shut off by the city. I’ve been on a text thread with my neighbors, and we’re all wondering when the hell we’re going to be able to get back in our apartments.
We’ve all been in contact with our landlord, and he says it’s up to the Department of Buildings inspector to come to our building and say it’s okay to move back in. I’ve been on a personal quest to contact the department myself, but the phone number they supplied never picks up and their voicemail is full.
At this point, I decided to email my district’s councilman, Robert Conergy Jr., to see if he can help. I explain the situation, that we’ve been displaced for two weeks in a pandemic and are at the mercy of NYC to send an inspector. I wanted to know if there’s anything he can do for us, as constituents. 4 days pass, and I don’t get a response. Needless to say, I’m very disappointed at my hyperlocal local government now, and I will not be voting for him next time he’s up for reelection.
I’ve even tweeted at and DM’d Mayor DeBlasio and the official NYC Department of Buildings Twitter account, with no response. I shouldn’t be surprised; the DoB Twitter has like no posts or doesn’t follow anybody.
The good thing about this situation, though, is that I’m closer (distance-wise) to my friends’ apartments and more bars, restaurants, and coffee shops. My social life (well, socially-distanced social life) is a bit better, though I do miss my quiet neighborhood. It’s a trade-off, for sure: in my own apartment, I’m able to concentrate on hobbies and personal projects. However, I am physically distant from friends and super popular bars and restaurants. Here, it’s the opposite: a 5-minute walk to everything and everyone. Still, in this temporary living situation, I feel like I’m a guest at someone else’s apartment — which, technically, I am.
My apartment is my home.
Fingers crossed that the city will get off its ass and finally let us back in.