Selling the apartment (kind of)

So it would be fair to say that we don't live in the most decorated of places here in Sweden. As any other student, we thrive on very little, and have really had no problems with or questioned that lifestyle for the past six months.

However, one's perspective quickly changes when their landlord suddenly knocks on your door one afternoon asking to show your apartment to a few future renters. Surprise...

So, let me paint the picture for you as to what these potential renters experienced as they walked through our lovely home. To start, when you enter through the main door, you pass by a poster describing the Halloween party that is going to take place tonight (granted that 'tonight' refers to four months ago after never taking down our Halloween decorations). You are then greeted by dozens of wet shoes scattered across a pile of torn and filthy newspaper (to protect the floors of course). Half of the doorway is blocked by two bikes which don't currently run and the other half of the doorway has a massive (and quite hideous) couch in front of it.

As you walk through the hallway, you pass by a series of bookshelves with fabric stretched between them and the ceiling (that would be my bedroom). As you pass through the double doors, you enter the main living room of the apartment, complete with leather sofas, high ceilings ordained with fancy molding...and a bunch of half-deflated zebra-patterned balloons and business cards strung from the ceiling. Ok, maybe not overly classy. Ignoring the sheets hanging on the walls which double as projection screens and the half of a ladder which we pulled from a dumpster stored away in the corner, you then walk into Matt's and Wyeth's room. A couple of cheap plastic shower curtains hung down the center separate the room into two as clothes are gracefully scattered across the ground.

Squeezing through the clutter, you then exit Matt's door and find yourselves standing outside of Andrea's door. Considering it was noon, the landlord was slightly shocked when she opened the door and found Andrea peacefully sleeping on her airmattress on the ground. Andrea, quickly jumping out of bed in her pajamas, then finds herself awkwardly standing in the middle of the room as the couple decide to open all of her closets and check out each inch of her room.

From there, they head over to the bathroom where they are thoroughly impressed (as if the rest of the apartment hadn't done that already for them). Fortunately, I had remembered to grab my underwear which I usually leave hanging on the window sill accidentally. After the bathroom, they walk over to our kitchen where, fortunately, we had just cleaned the pile of dishes that morning. Yet, we still managed to include our touch of charm to the kitchen, including the cardboard we cut in the shape of a snowman and taped inside our lampshade, a Happy Birthday napkin we cut into four and taped onto the wall for decoration, and a golden crown and thong with a pattern of the London tube map on it hanging proudly on our coat racks. Classy :)

After the kitchen, they check out Lea's room who was the most normal and clean compared to all the others (perhaps not that big of an accomplishment) and then on to my room (or to be more precise, the hallway with a bookshelves doubling as a wall). Now, let's just say that I'm not known for my tidiness, and my room was certainly attesting to that. The underwear that I had remembered to remove from the bathroom seemed to have multiplied in my room while trying to hang off any object or bookshelf in the tiny 10'x10' room. Not to let the underwear win, all my other clothes seemed to be competing for my floor's attention, forming a magnificent pile stretching from the floor up onto the bookshelf. I had removed the bathroom door in my room and flipped it sideways to use as a headboard for my bed. The bed itself entirely blocks the bathroom so you have to crawl over it. Inside the bathroom, wet jeans are hanging from the window and a toilet paper roll is taped to the wall to function as my toothbrush holder.

After exiting my room, they head back out into the main room (although if they wanted, they could have slipped out the secret door I installed beside my bookshelf to get to the front door) and walk back past the dead plants on the window sills and random kilt hanging from the wall. Nothing like a kilt and dead plants to sell someone on renting your apartment!!

Two hours later, the maintenance man came by to fix our broken dishwasher, and with him, he carried a handwritten note explaining that our landlord would be showing the apartment again next week...hint, hint. I guess student living is not quite the same as a model show room.

On another note, this afternoon, we found out that we have been chosen as finalists for a competition for Staples and International Paper to develop a sustainability plan for increasing paper recycling and reuse programs. So over the next few months we will be working alongside these two companies to develop a business and design plan to be implemented. We're quite excited about this opportunity and look forward to working alongside this industry to apply the frameworks and methods we have learned here in Sweden to the competition. Club Zebra Consulting, here we come...

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