The Elevator Doesn’t Stop Here


Moving into my apartment I arrived with a heavy suitcase. The realtor and I looked at it and looked at the stairs in that way one does when contemplating a difficult but doable task. Then she grabbed the suitcase and said she’d take it on the elevator. She joined one of my new upstairs neighbors in the elevator and the door closed. I trudged up the stairs with the other luggage.

I heard the elevator door open again on the ground floor. A few seconds later the realtor appeared at the bottom of the stairs with my suitcase and started dragging it up.

inside the elevator

Was the elevator broken?
No, it works.

The elevator does not stop on my floor.

Apparently my apartment floor mates have decided that there is no need for an elevator to the first floor, so they do not pay for the elevator. The elevator, therefore, does not stop on our floor.

That’s ok with me. I don’t move heavy things very often. I take stairs most of the time in most places anyway. And I’m all for saving money on needless things.

The elevator points out how the people in a building deal with shared responsibilities of the building.* I wondered this on my first two trips to Romania. I’m finding it out now by living it. Nothing quite like experiential education.

list of dues for each apartment

Every month the expenses of the building are divided appropriately between tenants (based on usage or divided equally, depending on the item) and that is posted by the entrance of the building.

Also posted are the days and times one can go to the building office to pay the bill. You go in person, with cash, to pay the bill and they give you a receipt saying you met your responsibilities. The office for my building is one flight up from the last floor (9th floor), in what appears to be an empty, unfinished apartment. The person taking the money is only there for a half hour or so 2 evenings a month, so you must be available and prompt.

paying monthly expenses

When I get done playing my bill I usually grin the whole way back down to my apartment, taking the stairs, of course. I don’t know what it is about paying that bill, but I’m always so proud of myself for figuring out how, when, what, and where this whole process occurs and making it happen once a month.

Tonight I’ll be trudging up those stairs again. And grinning the whole way down.

*Not all buildings work this way. Mine has an association and thus shares responsibilities. With others each tenant pays each bill to the appropriate entity seperately.


2 responses to “The Elevator Doesn’t Stop Here

  1. I think some sociologist would have a great explanation for this – perhaps even a name.

  2. Pingback: My Romanian Top Ten | Romanian Reflections

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s