Almost a first conflict
The day before, one of my housemates popped over and say that I’m using her bowl. I recall vaguely taking the bowl from the drying area so I make a mental note to take the stack of bowl and plates from the countertop.
The following day, a Saturday, I cook my lunch as usual, using the pot that I found in the drawers. Spaghetti with mentaiko sauce, mushroom and cherry tomato. The mentaiko sauce is the one prepacked from Don Don Donki. They are having a special discount for 4 packets. The sauce is a little bit on the light side but I’m guessing that’s perhaps due to the fact that I’m having quite a substantial amount of spaghetti.
At 5pm, I finish up my chores to head to my parents’ home. I still have things to bring over to my new place and I promise mum to try to visit weekly. That night, it was food delivery. My brother and sister-in-law were there as well. Coming back to visit felt different from staying there all the time. I was more present and appreciative of the dinner provided and the company. I gave a brief update of my new place and ran through the list of items that I’m bringing back.
I have neither my laptop nor my e-reader with me. At 10.30pm, after watching a few videos of Edwin Tong and the senior leaders of the Worker’s Party in the Committee of Privileges inquiry.
7.30 am. Sunday, even though it is a weekend, I rise as the same time as during my working days. I prepared a simple breakfast with my go to cappuccino from my coffee machine. Initially, I want to bring the coffee machine with me, but I’m rethinking all the hassle that I have to go through just to bring the coffee machine. Probably not. It could stay at my parents’ home.
9.30am. I reach back with my laptop screen and a long running list of items from home. Most importantly, I brought the trading books that I want to study more intently with the extra time I have by moving closer to work. I saw that the drawer had a tape over it, that said “Do Not Disturb”.
It was then that I came to a realisation that I had been using the pots from the other housemate, who seems a little displeased when she told me that I was using her bowl previously.
But nobody have told me what is communal and what is not. The good thing was, there is a group chat for the tenants of the place. I crafted my apology message and asked in the group chat what is communal and what is not. On top of mentioning that I brought some items for communal use. The reply that I got back was that there are really not a lot of things that are communal to start with. Maybe not even the kettle.
When the lady arrives in the kitchen, I explained to her that I didn’t intentionally use her items, and I genuinely thought that the items are shared. She seemed to have get my point but perhaps, still suspicious of me as that was the second that I have used her item.
I went into my room to check my messages as I was planning to meet my friend for lunch and get my kitchen and alcohol supply. I heard a knock on my door. I had a habit of leaving my door ajar, since I only use the fan and I do not really have any windows in my room for ventilation. I thought it might be on someone’s else door.
I went out and saw my housemate, and she walked me through what was from the owner and what was from the other housemate. I learned that there was actually a rice cooker, bowls, plates and a utensil tray that I could used. I guess she understand that I was not here to take advantage of anybody as we continue chatting about her work, life and the country that she comes from.
I guess, that is perhaps the thing about living with housemates. Perhaps before, they do encounter housemates that are out to take advantage of them. At the end of the day, I just want to be in a cordial environment, and I guess communication and respecting others is key.