>Something strange is afoot at the Circle K

>Ok, not the Circle K (I just like that line), but my apartment complex. It’s been going on for a while, but I’ve been too preoccupied with other crap to really care.

I’ve lived in my apartment for about 3 years now. I loved it from the beginning. I have a parking space, a washer/dryer in my unit and a 5 minute drive to the beach. It’s a little old, probably built in the 1970s, but it was fine for my needs.

A year ago, I noticed this one apartment on the far side of my building that had taped plastic over the windows and doors. At first I thought they were just painting it or whatever. A couple of months later, I noticed that the place had been completely gutted. I’m talking down to the framing in places gutted. The carpet, all the appliances and cupboards were gone.

It didn’t really set off any loud alarms, just curiousity. Then a couple of months later, I was walking through the 14 building complex and noticed a few other ground floor apartments had the same situation going on. Some had the plastic haz mat type stuff over the windows and doors. Some had been cleared of everything but the floor and walls. I started to get concerned, but since it wasn’t next door to me, I did worry too much about it.

Then a few months ago, two units in the building next to mine were gutted in the same manner. Then a month or two ago, my downstairs neighbor suddenly moved out. Within a week of his moving out, the place was stripped and covered in plastic. Now I was getting a little concerned.

To add to the mystery, over the past week or so, something has been wrong with the plumbing. There is a lot of air in the pipes. I thought the toilet was going to explode at one point even though the contents were slight. I turned on the kitchen sink and it crackled like rocks were rolling around inside it. The washing machine did the same thing, but magnified so that it shook the place. It’s like they shut off the water while I’m at work.

Then, three days ago, I was sleepily trying to take a shower and almost got 3rd degree burns from the water. I don’t know why the water was so boiling hot. I looked at the faucet and it was in its usual place half way between extreme hot and extreme cold. Then this morning I turn the faucet on and it’s freezing. I pushed it to extreme hot and it was mildly tepid. It was as though there was no hot water. In the three years I’ve lived there, I’ve never ran out of hot water.

This weekend, I went wandering around to do a little investigation. From my casual observations I would say about 90% of the ground floor units are vacant. I also noticed that the giant “For Rent” “Now Leasing” banners have been removed. There is no indication of any advertisement of new vacancies on the front of the complex. All I know is that when my lease comes up, I am moving out.

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