Becky (beckatsila) wrote in bad_service,
Becky
beckatsila
bad_service

Not a very good beginning of a new year...

I live in an old brown brick apartment building in downtown Indianapolis. It's technically independent living, but support staff are on site 16 hours a day. I'm in a corner unit, and the apartment below me is vacant. Today, I'm grateful this is bad_service instead of catastrophic_service.

I woke up this morning and tried to take a bath. The cold water faucet could turn, but the water wouldn't flow. I used a small saucepan to carry some cold water from the kitchen and cool the tub down. After my bath, I realized that the bathroom sink was having sympathy pains and the toilet didn't work at all. The heater was spitting out as much cold air as hot air. To the best of my knowledge, this made my unit unfit for habitation.

Thankfully I have family close by, and failing that, a supportive church. I called both.

My parents came by as quickly as they could. My dad, however, is completely incapable of taking my word for it if I say something's broken. He checked the bathroom and brilliantly concluded that the cold water pipes were frozen. He then went over to check the heater and tried to fix it.

Within seconds it started smoking. I blurted out a mild expletive, quickly turned it off and began fanning the smoke.

It was about this time that I remembered that the office had disconnected my smoke detector due to its tendency to give false alarms--and haven't fixed it yet.

You do the math--water barely functioning, smoking furnace and a busted smoke detector.

I got ahold of the office, and discovered they didn't have the stuff they needed to fix the smoke detector. I'm relatively sure that's a fire code violation. The office sent a "life coach" (someone who does a social worker's job with none of the training) up to investigate. My dad--an engineer--questioned her for a while and discovered that they hadn't heated the vacant apartment below me, which caused some of the pipes in my unit to freeze. He also figured out that the heater's motor had blown out.

The life coach said maintainence will take a look at it on Monday. As for how long it'll take for it to get fixed, God only knows. She recommended I stay with my parents.

What really angers me is that I got court-ordered to this mental health system because I was living in similar conditions on my own.

I've got a journalism degree, but the media tend to ignore subjects involving mental illness (in fact, I lost my last job because of it). Failing that, I've got a protective brother who's studying pre-law and has mentors...

Any ideas on how to handle this once I can move back in?
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