When you live in NYC you get used to people visiting. You also say that every time a visitor leaves you will never have another one again (except for a few who are always welcome back (Charlotte, Lynn, Bela, Nico). And then you forget and let someone else come. Until you get the real houseguest from hell, and that changes it all...
NYC is a prime tourist location and hotel rooms are expensive. This is why most tourists only come for a few days at a time. Or they sublet apartments/rooms found via Craigslist for a set per-night rate. Or if you are very very lucky you can sleep on a friend's couch for a few nights for free. Most New Yorkers are clear with their guests that apartments are small and if they are visiting they must respect the space. That means, don't make a mess, don't expect your host to figure out every moment of your stay for you and most of all, offer to help out with groceries, maybe throw some money towards a bill or two... I mean always treat others as you would like to be treated yourself. If you are generous enough to let me stay on your couch while I am visiting your city, then I will at least stock up your fridge with things YOU like to eat.
I was kind of dreading this one already and should have just gone with my gut feeling. Hadn't seen this guy for over 10 years, he reconnected via FB and we had a nice email discussion going. Then he got a little strange, maybe too personal, and I just stopped corresponding for a while. We got back in touch again, and he mentioned that he would like to come to NYC for a few days before going back to work work at the beginning of Sept, and asked if I would be able to lend him my couch. I said OK, glanced at the dates (glanced being the main word) and waited for him to get here. My roommate is out of town til the end of the month, and even said he could have her room, which is a major plus point. His own room!
Move forward to the day of arrival... I realised that the dates he had sent me equated to THIRTEEN days. I immediately started to invent different scenarios in my head...
1). Do I have any female friends who will fall madly in love with him and who he can stay with? (No)
2). Can I be the uber bitch from hell so he changes his flight to an earlier return date? (I tried, but felt bad).
3). Maybe he will miss his flight and not make it out of France?
4). Maybe Immigration won't let him in and will send him back to France??
To no avail. Houseguest made it safe and sound.
Turns out he speaks about 2 words of English.
Turns out he assumed I would organise his holiday for him.
Turns out he's an arrogant, narrow-minded guy who tends to think women are not as smart as him.
Turns out he assumed I would translate all conversations I had with my friends so he could understand them.
Turns out he thought it's normal that he could openly judge the life I live and even tell me how I should live it.
He bought some groceries, but only things HE liked. Never once asked me what I would like to eat, and if he offered me something and I said "No thanks", responded with "you don't like ANYTHING". Well you wouldn't say that if you had actually asked what I DID like.
Every time we had a conversation about something he belittled my arguments and wouldn't listen. Thing is, I hate being wrong when I know I'm right, and also have a major problem with arrogance and assholes, so I won't let things slide.
Last night he put Guns n Roses on. I said I hated GnR (not entirely true, but I was more in the mood for Tom Waits). Guess what he did?! PUT IT ON LOUDER.
I can't have people from my youth coming into my life and making me feel like shit. I like myself, I like my life and I am living it the way I feel is right for me.
This morning I cleaned the kitchen and found a rotten peach in the fruit bowl. I asked him if he was planning on eating rotten peaches, and he responded "No, do YOU eat rotten fruit Jade?". I tell you, he nearly got the rotten peach thrown at him, full force. No, I don't eat rotten fruit, I was just cleaning your effing mess up douchebag.
There are other things that I just don't have the space to mention. But I cannot wait to have my whole apartment to myself again.
Thankfully he leaves tonight. He will never be invited back again. NEVER.
If you are a guest in someone's home, please always treat it with respect. And don't forget - you are entering someone else's life, they are not on holiday like you. Please respect that.