Monday, September 05, 2005

My landlord, Jim

I've known my landlord, Jim, for over two years now. Yes, that means I've been renting a room from him since 2003. June 2003 to be exact. He is quite forward looking in that this apartment is an investment property. The apartment he is currently staying in with his family is rented. He plans to move here when he retires eventually. In the meantime, our rent pays for his mortgage. This is not a virtue I find in the average Aussie.

Indeed, he also tells me that most Aussies live hand to mouth and do not have much in savings. And given the relatively high inflation rate here, I foresee a savings crunch for the younger generation of Australians. One, they don't save much. Two, there are fewer of them to support an ever growing older generation. Yes, Australia also has a birth rate problem. They just announced a similar to our baby bonus thing last year. Apparently, it is working, but I suspect it will be a knee jerk thing and things will settle down after a while.

Jim is Caucasian, in his fifties and his wife is Indonesian Chinese. He's pretty passionate about all things Asians and prefers to rent the apartment to Asians. That's how I got the room, I suppose. *Shrug* As they married rather late, they did not have any children of their own. But he does have stepchildren from his wife's earlier marriage. Indeed, his stepdaughter just became a mum, so Jim has just become a stepgranddad. And boy is he excited! Once I ask him something about the baby, he'll start blabbering in great length and minute detail about him. Heh, a little like me about my niece. To see such love for a STEPgrandchild is really something to behold and admire.

He's also pretty obsessed with cleanliness, so he comes around once every week to clean up the apartment. That's the main reason why I've chosen to stay here all this while. It is comforting to know how much your landlord cares about the apartment you've rented from him. Most landlords I've heard of don't bother about the apartment and come round only to collect the rent.

Jim has become my main source of information on all things Australian. I've switched off from Australian TV (other than some brilliant foreign movies they show here occasionally) after a while. So whilst I am physically in Australia, I'm still emotionally very much plugged into Singapore. Most Australian news just slide off me. Jim fills me in every week he drops by to clean the place on the main news of the week.

In a way, Jim has become like half a father to me. We talk a lot when he is around. We discuss politics, a little sports (he half taught me the rules for cricket but I still find it a boring game), family (my niece, his stepgrandson) and occasionally work. Our most recent topic was on finding the Significant Other in our lives. He is a firm believer that humans are not made to be alone and sooner or later, we will all find the Significant Other, as long as we look hard enough (I don't really agree but that's another story). Indeed, he said this to me…

"I'm worried about you."

"Me? Why?"

"You haven't found your Significant Other yet. I'm not saying you should go out and just grab some girl off the streets, but I do hope you will find her soon. Your parents don't say it, but I am sure they are worried for you too. I hope one day to be able to fly to Singapore to attend your wedding."

Coming off the back of my recent breakup (which only my mum and he knew about) and current uncertainties about 綺 (which nobody knows about), I was flabbergasted. Momentarily lost for words.

I'm lucky to have a landlord like him.

Akan Datang: Red devils

207 days to go.


Blogger Little Miss Drinkalot said...

Some of your links aren't working.

Thu Jan 19, 08:43:00 pm 2006  
Blogger Acey Deucey said...

Oh, ok, I get what you mean. Fixed liao. Thanks for letting me know.

Let me know if you encounter anymore.

Thu Jan 19, 09:00:00 pm 2006  

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