Friday, May 27, 2016

Second World Problems

The "Second World" refers to the former communist-socialist, industrial states, (formerly the Eastern bloc, the territory and sphere of influence of the Union of Soviet Socialists Republic) today: Russia, Eastern Europe (e.g., Poland) and some of the Turk States (e.g., Kazakhstan) as well as China.
blue = 1st
red = 2nd
green = 3rd

  • When your eggs are covered in chicken poop
  • When you have to drink instant coffee because you don't have a coffee maker, and coffee filters are hard to find
  • Netflix, Amazon Prime, and YouTube videos are "not available in your country"
  • Your hot water kettle is caked with white calcium/mineral build up
  • When you can't find heat protectant hair spray anywhere  :(
  • When a guy follows you off the metro for 10 minutes because you have a "friendly-looking face" and later that day a taxi driver jokes that he's going to take you to his house if he can't find yours (because I couldn't remember my address, to be fair...)
  • Every night you get home and your hair smells like cigarette smoke
  • Most shops in the city don't carry iPhone accessories- especially not for the newest model
  • When it's too windy to use your outdoor clothes line (I'm on the 5th floor, so if something falls it's bad news for me)
  • When you don't have AC, but you don't want to open your windows because so many flies and other bugs will come in...
  • When you check the weather before doing laundry because you hang your clothes to dry outside
  • Bread expires in 3-4 days because it's not full of preservatives (but they sell it in smaller loaves, so it's not so bad) 
  • When you can't tell if you're tanner or just permanently coated in street dust
  • You can't go outside with wet hair because everyone will stare and old ladies will yell at you that you will get sick
  • You can't text while walking because the sidewalks are treacherous...each step is on a different level, full of potholes, and sometimes random obstacles like broken pieces of concrete, glass shards, or pipes sticking out of the ground! When cars park on the sidewalks (which is very frequent) you have to walk on the road, and with the crazy way that people drive, that is DEFINITELY not conducive to a leisurely text-and-walk experience
  • You can never get everything charged at once because a) all the plugs are single, so there are less of them, and b) you have to use bulky converter/adapters and you probably have more devices than converters
  • Somethings are much cheaper (fresh vegetables, public transportation), and some things are much more expensive...definitely sucks when something you wanted turns out to be prohibitively expensive- like cereal or coffee creamer or athletic clothes. 

Bonus: this is more of a personal struggle, but I'll share it here anyway...
Apparently, some of the people in my apartment building weren't paying their building maintenance fees (usually $2-3 per month), so the building owner installed a thing in the elevator where you have to pay to use it. This isn't super uncommon in Georgia, but usually it's 5 or 10 cents per ride, and ours is 20 cents! So it adds up fast. This morning, I try to leave my house and I realized I never have taken the elevator down by myself. I just found out, however, that it's free going down, so I decided to ride. There was no "ground floor" marker, just buttons 0-10, so I tried floor 1...the doors open and it's a concrete floor with broken wooden beams and scattered construction I tried floor 0 and it's literally just dirt and sand with pieces of trash laying around...I didn't even stick my head out of the elevator. I was scared that a rat or a vagrant or someone would run into the elevator so I just hit "close doors" as hard as possible. The exit is on floor 2. 
Then, struggle part 2 came when I got home- I was carrying bags and tired so I decided to pay the 20 cents and take the elevator up to the 5th floor where I live. I was curious if other coins would work, so I tried a Russian rouble- it didn't work. After about 5 seconds, though, the doors close, the lights turn off, and the elevator just sits motionless. Now I was in the dark, holding grocery bags and my purse, and terrified that I would end up back in the basement. I dug around my wallet for a big coin and found what I thought was a 20-cent piece. I shoved it into the box but nothing I guess it was some other coin? I didn't want to waste any more money, so I looked for my phone but with all my bags I couldn't find it rolling around the corners of my purse for probably a whole minute. Finally I got my phone and turned the flashlight on, found a 20-cent coin, and got to my floor...but that elevator really should have a motion-sensor light.

1 comment:

  1. Netflix can be downloaded and not cost a penny in dropbox (IPR shamelessly infringed) in whatever their version in 2nd country. ask some local university students and they know where to find it.