I promised a photo update on my house once we’d done some rearranging and painting.
And the housing update isn’t just for you… It’s also the Foreign Service blog Round-Up theme of the week. Since this is our first post, we really don’t have very many good stories. The building we’re in is brand-spankin’ new.
There is a power shortage in Bangladesh, so, even though there are several apartments in our building, the whole building was not allowed to use more than the power allotted to the previous building on the lot: a single family house. So, we have an elevator, but no power to it (I can’t imagine living on the higher floors!), A/Cs that weren’t connected (thank goodness for the winter chill of 70 degrees!), and similar oddities.
The builder obviously did not consider convenience in designing the kitchens and bathrooms. The shelves in the kitchen are all in the wrong places, or behind cupboards that don’t open right. There wasn’t any place to put extra toilet paper in the bathroom, etc. But, thanks to the GSO, they’ve got most of those new house quirks worked out. We installed shelves to make a pantry, and in all the kitchen cupboards and the bathrooms. Whoever follows us won’t be so confused by the lack of shelves.
They will, however, continue to be confused by the wall switches. In every room, there is a place near the door for the wall switches. Each light or fan is controlled by its own switch, even if they’re a pair of sconces or something. However, we have about 6 extra switches in each room, and in some cases 4 times as many fan switch/spinners than we need. I still can’t figure out why, but we aren’t the only ones, there’s a pandemic of switches in Dhaka.
The house is altogether too large for the two of us, but would be great for entertaining. We’ve had a few parties here, and most of the guests have liked it too. We’ve got nothing on the other houses in the pool for space though, at least as far as I’ve seen. Some people really have astonishingly large living rooms. There must be something in the culture that values that. Since the main thing we seem to do here is go and hang out at other people’s houses, it’s a good thing we’ve got living room space.
Everyone in the Dhaka housing pool has beige carpets on top of some kind of tile or marble flooring. We also all have beige curtains that can only be removed with a LOT of effort and a screwdriver. We tried to change ours to something a little different, but still haven’t succeeded. Most of us have the furniture shown above, but a few have some “southwestern” patterned upholstery and lanai-themed wooden furniture that hearkens back to the house on the Golden Girls. The lucky few have some of the “new” furniture, envied for it’s solid tones. You are able to slipcover in Dhaka, but the prices have recently gone up, we’re not sure why.
So, in general, nothing is terribly fancy, though it’s all serviceable. We live large compared to our housekeeper, but it would just be a typical apartment back in the states, just one with tile floors and an awkward kitchen.