Monday, December 17, 2012

slum apartment

sink and hot plate

top of fridge

Lohbado wandered into an apartment the size of a storage locker. The tenant gave him permission to photograph a few details. The rent is high. One pays for the privilege of living indoors. It's better than living on the street. Landlords have to survive. The tenant gets depressed and stops cleaning the place. It's easy to sink into depressive inertia, to spend days inside, sleeping, watching a DVD and sleeping some more. I got depressed just visiting the place, the low ceilings, the smell of decay.

Eighty per cent of the man's income goes towards rent. After paying rent, there's eighty dollars left to pay for everything else during the month. There are little survival tricks. Don't use toilet paper. Wash your clothes in the bathtub. Get food from the food bank. Never go beyond walking distance. If you can find a cheap bike, that would be nice. It costs nearly six dollars for a round trip on public transit.

Sometimes a man has trouble holding and keeping a job. There are psychological issues. One could take medication. As one becomes lower economic caste, doors close. People turn away in disgust. Such a person learns to keep a low profile.

This apartment is luxurious compared to some other places I've seen in much worse condition. The ratio of what one pays and what one receives in return increases with the level of one's destitution. You pay increasingly more for increasingly less. 

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