it is midnight here in the holy city of zefat. the kids just went out to eat some local thai food in the neighborhood. sahar was still awake. we just had 12 paying people arrive who are staying downstairs for 3 days.
the kids are camping upstairs with me. they gave up their 5 room apartment to make some money this summer. their shoe shop has been very slow this month. we miracuously, had last minute renters before shabbat and the realtor just brought over a group this evening. i should say, rather, this night. he called us at 10:00 p.m. the entire town is renting out their homes. gal and i scrambled to add mattresses, sheets and pillows. the place was more or less in order. sahar was doing summersaults off the mattresses.
some people in zefat are making out like bandits. we are on the low end of the spectrum because we don't have airconditioning. the nights have been so chilly here that you really need blankets. the folks from the center of the country do not rent without airconditioning. hence, we lower our price.
the guests seem nice enough. they promise to be out for most of the day. last year i had a large family here who stayed downstairs all day long. the mother cooked all day and everyone had to have a hot shower. despite, a record heat wave that had us all melting, they insisted that i turn on the hot water boiler. they even filled up a pool with my water. their 3 day stint here cost me a $50 water fine. what was i to do? i was desperate for cash.
this realtor has been calling us all week long with all sorts of offers of groups. he doesn't call before midnight. not one of his leads paid off until tonight. the family from last year called a few weeks ago but i told them that we were no longer renting. i wasn't sure if the kids really wanted to bother. they surely do and we are all hustling to make the bucks before september.
so far we've made only about $1500. we split it down the middle. it will pay for a month's rent of the shoe store and hopefully, my water bill and city tax. i had to replace the toilet tank downstairs, so there went half of my profit. what can you do?
we just had a 3 day klezmer music festival in zefat. i didn't leave my house or neighborhood for the duration of the festival. sahar went to his other grandma all week long. i stayed in and watched television and stuffed face. zvi worked until 1:00 a.m. each night at the winery tourist center and gal stayed at the shoe store until 11:00 p.m. we are all on financial survivial mode.
i was planning on visiting the seniors on thursday but i got a call from a group of 10 who were desperately seeking a place to sleep in this area. they were hardly here. the place was untouched. we really locked out with that group. the realtor, is another story. he is a price gouger and takes 20 to 30% from us. we are at his mercy. it's not nice at all.
my niece and family are in from india and we still haven't gotten together with the kids for a play date. my nephew just came in before shabbat and we haven't connected with him, either. i'd love to make a dinner for them. we'll see. gal and zvi don't usually come home until after 8:00 p.m. i think it's hard for my niece to deal with two small kids now. anyway, the downstairs will be off limits until wednesday.
it's a bit hard on sahar. he doesn't quite understand why he can't go 'upstairs'. that's what he calls the downstairs. it's equally frustrationg for the dogs. i don't have leashes for them. it's a bit of a strain. the things we do for money, heh!