Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · Society and News

Update about the Coronavirus Pandemic – Austria, March 23

It still took me until now to finish this post. Sigh… sorry about that. The weird tiredness still wasn’t letting up at all and it was impossible to think clearly enough to write in such a state. This post is simply an update about the pandemic and the current situation in Austria.

Like I’ve said, I publish these updates to document the historic circumstances we all are finding ourselves in, to have a record of it for myself and for whoever else is interested in reading about it again later on.

Here is the link to my 2nd post, about us and the cats: https://catladynatascha.com/2020/03/23/we-are-staying-at-home-for-another-month-march-23/

One of my huge worries is now gone! I will not lose access to my pain medication at any point. Everything has been sorted out wonderfully, for everyone.

It would be a long boring description of how everything works and was worked out right now, but basically: The health department and the national health care made sure everyone would be able to get their medications in the most uncomplicated way. People are able to call their doctors and order their script over the phone. The doctors office then sends the prescription electronically to the pharmacy. Narcotic long term prescriptions are sent to the health department office, as an original paper document. That office then approves and scans them into their computer system, and afterwards, they are sent to the pharmacy.

So basically, people don’t have to go anywhere, except to their pharmacy, to pick up their medications. Also, depending on the medication, people are able to fill up to 3 months worth of medications at once.

That electronic system was not even ready to be fully rolled out, but since the technology and computer systems for it had already been installed in doctors offices and pharmacies, they simply activated it, due to the circumstances. It was due to be slowly implemented all over, but they’ve now done it within a few days. It’s working too! No problems at all.

The goverment is doing whatever they can to reduce the number of people that have to leave their homes.

For patients like me, this meant that I was able to pick up 4 weeks worth of medication at once, instead of going to the pharmacy numerous times every week.

Coronavirus infections are still increasing faster and faster

With the Coronavirus infections still rising unbelievably fast, it is now a huge relief that I won’t have to leave our home for the next 4 weeks. Any risk of catching the Virus and passing on to Ralph is too high of a risk to take.

As had been expected, the cases of Coronavirus infections are still increasing unbelievably fast. People were still getting infected at a high rate before the lock-downs took effect on March 16. By the time two weeks will have passed after that date, 1000s more will have fallen ill with Covid-19.

The restrictions I talked about in my other post (LINK) are still in place and will stay in place at least until April 12. Of course, there could be additional measures put in place, or existing ones adapted, depending on the situation.

4097 Coronavirus Infections, March 23 at 5pm

The governments update from today at 5pm. Of the 4097 patients with COVID-19, 132 have to be treated in the hospital and 15 very severe cases are currently in the ICU

The increase over the last few days has been enormous. Two weeks ago, we went from over 100 on Monday, March 9, to over a 1000 by last Sunday, March 15. Then within this week, the increase was to over 3000. I’m sure we will have another huge increase in infections over the coming week. After that, it will hopefully flatten out and then decrease.

I used the public government data to create a slideshow, showing the increase of infections in Austria over time. The screenshots are from the data graphs published by the Austrian government at: https://info.gesundheitsministerium.at/

Because a further large increase in COVID-19 patients is expected, temporary hospitals are being prepared in huge halls which are normally used for large conferences, concerts, exhibitions and other events. One of these large halls that are being prepared, is just a few blocks away from our home. It will have beds for up to 1000 people. Additionally, hospitals which had been closed not too long ago, are being prepared for COVID-19 patients as well.

Staying home, toilet paper craziness and panic buying

We are staying at home! As does about 95% of the Austrian population. 5% don’t really care though and do whatever they want and behave as if it’s all just a big holiday season everyone. The problem is that these 5% tend to crowd the same places, (partying, large groups in parks and at other typical hangout spots throughout the city). There is hardly any distance between these people and anyone who has to walk past and through these crowds. But that happens in many other countries, despite curfews and lockdowns. They’re getting fined big time though.

Toilet paper is still being bought like crazy. Shop keepers say it’s gone within a short time right after they open in the morning. I wonder if we will ever find out what that is all about?

Despite the fact that grocery stores are still being stocked up normally, people are still panic buying long-lasting food and the stores can’t keep up with it. It would be more than enough for everyone if it wouldn’t be for panic buyers. The panic buying seems to happen right when the stores open. For the rest of the day, there are only very few customers in the stores.

Break-ins

The emptiness in the streets during the night is now increasingly used by criminals to break into stores and to rob the few people that are out. Thankfully it’s not rampant here, but it definitely happens a lot more now.

Even my old pharmacy has been broken into and robbed on the first night of the lockdown last week. I am glad my current pharmacy is in a really public place with police CCTV. My old one was in an area that is always quiet and empty overnight, but especially now.

The best and the worst in people

People are helping each other. In many apartment buildings, young and healthy people are offering to go out and buy groceries, or pick up medications for older people and people who are especially vulnerable to complications from COVID-19.

I have a lot of respect and gratitude for everyone who is now working right now. The pharmacists and people at the cash registers in grocery stores have no face masks, due to a massive shortage of protective gear. They have to deal with some awful customers during the best of times, but I’ve heard stories from all over the world, about how absolutely rotten some people are behaving at the moment. It’s true that emergencies bring out the best and the worst in people.

I’m thankful for every single one who keeps our country and all the other countries running and functioning. Every single one of them, from the people who keep picking up the rubbish bins from our apartment buildings, to the people who deliver our mail and parcels, to the doctors, nurses, and police and to the people who keep the infrastructure running, so we all have power, gas, water, phone and internet. I’m also grateful that our government is simply doing what’s necessary without worrying about bureaucracy.

Stay safe

The official number of people infected by the Coronavirus is most likely not everyone. The number of people who are asymptomatic, or who are not even seeking help and dealing with it themselves, is thought to be very high as well.

So please stay safe by keeping your distance. Stay home as much as you possibly can, be mindful not to touch your face while outside and before you were able to wash your hands properly.

I know there are hardly any hand sanitizers available anymore, but you can use alcohol like Vodka and Schnapps to disinfect your hands while you’re out, if you fill it into a small bottle to carry with you. I know it smells, but at least it works to kill the Virus.

I’ll keep updating as much as I can, about life and the cats and everything else going on. Should anyone ever feel worried about us, or simply just feel the need to contact us, you can always email me directly at:

catlady-natascha@protonmail.com

Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · Society and News · The Cats

Life during the Corona Pandemic – March 11 Update

It’s now officially a Pandemic. But that was apparent for a while now anyway.

I really wasn’t sure if I should write regular updates about how things are going here in Austria and in general, since I didn’t want to add to the constant Corona Presence in every headline, posting and new article. As people are hearing about nothing else anymore almost.

But then I thought it’s going to be a record of our life, that I can look back on years later, and in this way I can let everyone know how we’re doing and that we’re ok.

Case update for Austria, March 11, 2020 at 3pm

246 cases so far in all of Austria.
Cases for each state: Lower Austria (45), Vienna (50), Styria, our state (25), Tyrol (57), Upper Austria (35), Salzburg (14), Burgenland (4), Vorarlberg (13) and Carinthia (3).

New temporary emergency laws and recommendations during the Corona Pandemic in Austria

  • Anything with gatherings of more than 100 people indoors (which also includes any staff) is temporarily forbidden.
  • Outdoor gatherings with more than 500 people, including staff, is temporarily forbidden
  • Universities and any schools for higher education are being closed
  • No entry into Austria from Italy, except with an up to date document that proves the person is not infected with the Coronavirus
  • Austrian citizens still in the now locked down Italy will be brought home by the government, but they have to stay in quarantine for two weeks in Austria
  • People should avoid private contacts and gatherings and stay home as much as possible
  • Older people and people with compromised immune system should not receive visitors if it can be avoided

Life seems as it always is, in the city and of course at home

While case counts are multiplying extremely fast now, and there is panic and fear among people in many countries, it’s very calm and normal here in Graz and Austria in general. Austrian people usually don’t panic quickly. It has to get really bad before there would be widespread panic.

The late afternoon sun, seen from the balcony with the cat safety net

Today was a wonderfully warm and sunny spring day, with temperatures over 20°C / 68°F. As I went out this this afternoon around 4pm, people were out in the usual numbers. The large park in our neighbourhood was filled with people sitting on the grass and taking walks, enjoying the warm sun. The outside seating area of every Cafe I saw in the city was quite full and the streets were just as busy as always around that time.

Just like last year, the spring flowers are everywhere, the birds are building their nests in the garden, the neighbourhood kitties are walking around in the garden. Hero and Lisa saw two of the neighbourhood kitties yesterday and got all excited. Unfortunately it was past sunset and too dark to take pictures of them.

It was a mostly sunny afternoon yesterday, and you can feel that the sun is getting warmer and warmer now, as the northern hemisphere is getting closer to the summer. Especially this year, we can hardly wait.

The kitties are crowding in every sun puddle, especially on the bed.

Hero, Lisa and Sonic. Lisa is giving Sonic a friendly nose greeting and a few licks on his head.
Lovely warm sun! Samantha is hardly visible, but she is in the top left area of the picture, in the shadow, lying on a white mat under the side table. The sun had been there a while ago, but was now gone.
So Samantha decided she would try to get into the sun puddle on the bed.

Our life is still normal in Graz

While the Corona cases are multiplying every day, things are still as always pretty much. Thankfully, we do not have a huge number of cases in our state and city yet. 18 for the whole of Styria, our state. They aren’t mentioning where those cases are, or if they’re spread out over the state or concentrated in an area, I don’t know why. But in the way it began and the few cases they mentioned, the cases were in the east of our state, and just one in our city of Graz. But it was about 10 days ago when they mentioned that patient from Graz, so I’m sure there are more by now, and probably people who were in contact with that person.

Thankfully, my doctors office, the pharmacy and the health department are all working as usual. I haven’t heard of any more closed doctors offices for Austria and haven’t heard of any pharmacy or other larger health care provider closing down. And there is no atmosphere of panic among people. I hope it’s going to stay that way.

I can still go out without worry as of now, but I do take all the precautions I can possibly take. I keep away from people and I’m always using my bicycle to go where I need to go even more.

There are just as many people around as always, from what I can tell. People are still sitting in Cafe’s, stroll through the city and stores, people are still doing they’re daily runs along the Mur and the parks, and you don’t really see any panic buying going on in the stores. But the sanitizers, disinfectants, and tinned food are still sold out for the most part, although they’re being restocked.

We still have enough toilet paper in stores.

Even in the smaller stores, like the one I took this photo in, there is no toilet paper missing.

There was more toilet paper stored at the top of the shelf and even more around the corner.

Plans for next week

Since the risk to become ill myself is still very low for Graz, especially with the precautions I take, I still go out to pick up a few necessities, but I go during times when hardly anyone else goes shopping. Though seeing how fast the cases multiply, I will stop any shopping in stores by next week possibly.

Also, I will try to talk to my, doctor on Monday, to use all my vacation allowance and pick up all my months medication at once to take home with me. Not only would I not have to keep worrying to suddenly stand in front of closed doors at my pharmacy, if they have to shut down because of a case, and I won’t have to keep going out so much, and put Ralph at risk with it.

My immune system is really good and strong, I never become sick, my health problems are pain related, but organically I’m perfectly fine. Though since everyone above the age of 60 is at a higher risk to develop severe problems if infected with the Virus, I really don’t want to risk anything, even if the chances to catch it, as of right now in our area, are rather low.

That’s why I don’t like people getting dismissed with their worries, as it keeps happening at the moment. People here are so used to nothing bad ever happening, that they can’t seem to grasp the possibility that it could be different this time.

I much rather take precautions as much as possible and not need it, than risk the health of my most beloved husband and the well-being of our little family.

Lets hope I’ll be able to get this done, so I can stay home for the next 4 weeks. Of course it might not be over by then, but it might start to get better by then. Also, it might be foreseeable in which direction the pandemic is going by then.

Please stay safe my friends, especially in all those areas with a high number of cases. Also be careful, as people are unpredictable when panicked. Stay home as much as you can, until this “storm” has passed.

Lots of love from us all <3

Everything · Murli the cat · Our friends · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

Thank you all for your love and kindness after the sudden passing of my sweet girl Murli

You all have been so sweet and your many comments all over WordPress, Facebook, Twitter and the Emails mean so much, I can’t even describe how much. It helped my broken heart to keep going.

Internet problems since last WednesdayI just want you to know that we’ve been having really bad trouble with our internet since last Wednesday. It got so incredibly slow, that no site would load properly, or time out altogether. Trying to comment failed mostly and the few replies I got out took multiple tries. Due to my phone internet running on the same network, it had the same issues. Many people in Austria had the same problems with the same provider these days, which is probably due to the big changes they are working on. Thankfully it seems to be working again today and hopefully, it stays that way.

I will reply to all your kind comments as soon as I can, starting tomorrow and during the next days.

Thank you so much for creating this beautiful card for Murli, Sherri-Ellen and BellaDharma and for your thoughts in your blog post. You’re purrfect friends and fur family and we love you both!

BellaDharma LadyMew for Murli
BellaDharma and LadyMew’s card in remembrance of sweet girl Murli

Many of you knew Murli and me for years. I shared so many posts and photos about our everyday lives and what we’re up to, way back before I even knew Ralph. Murli and I made so many wonderful friends, who became really close friends. It does not matter how far apart some of us are living, we feel close to each other and due to how we share our lives with each other. We all had our hearts stolen by each other’s furbabies and feel real heartbreak if one of them passes on. You all know very well about how I feel, so I don’t even need to describe the deep pain I feel in my heart.

It really is thanks to the love and friendship that I keep going. It’s all of it… My love for and from my other sweet furbabies Samantha, Sonic, Hero and Lisa, and of course the love for my wonderful caring and loving husband Ralph, and the love and support of all of you kind friends. Otherwise, I think I would have just lied down in bed and give up for a while.

But I keep my head up for my other kitties and Ralph. It’s not good for the kitties if I cry constantly and give into my heartbreak. I keep busy by caring for everyone and pouring my love on all of them.

It was difficult when everyone slept and I could not go online in any way to reach out or reply to any of you, due to the internet problems. It’s the quiet hours that are the most difficult, which is why I still can not sleep well. It’s only once I become so exhausted from lack of sleep, that I can get some hours in. Eating is another challenge.

I did not expect it to happen so soon. In fact, I was sure we would have a decade or even more left with Murli. I was hoping she will reach her 20s at least.

The only thing that is a slight comfort, is to know that Murli just slept away. She simply laid down to sleep and passed away. Her body had no signs of distress or pain, she was just like she always liked to sleep when she lied down by a heater.

And so I keep on living, carrying the love for Murli in my heart for the rest of my life, together with my beloved family, Ralph, Samantha, Sonic, Hero and Lisa.

The last couple of days

I have candles burning in between the window panes for Murli and I will keep having candles burning for her at the least until the new year. Sonic also loves watching them, as he absolutely loves lights.

CandlesforMurli

CandlesforMurli2

In our home, it’s not just Ralph and me who have been sad and missing Murli. Murli was loved by Sonic, Samantha and also the babies Hero and Lisa. There was something special about her, something that made other cats feel comfortable around her. Everyone wanted her friendship. Sonic especially loved Murli, he really did. It was obvious that he felt very sad for the first couple of days.

Sonic_watching_Candles
Sonic watches the candles I put in between the window. I put them there for Murli. As a sign for her that we’re thinking of her, that we keep a light going for her. The candles will be burning all the way until the new year at least.

Sonic, who is a pretty vocal kitty boy normally, was very quiet, hardly a peep from him and he kept to himself, just sleeping mostly. Though he did eat and drink properly thankfully. But anytime he did get up from sleep, he would walk around the apartment, looking everywhere for Murli. Sniffing at everything that had her scent, trying to follow it, hoping he would find her. He kept that going for a few days but has given up now. Though I am sure he is still missing her. He is thankfully though much more himself again. Sonic bonded with Hero and Lisa as soon as he met them. I think the friendship he has with the siblings is doing him well now.

20190818_Murli_Samantha_02
Murli and Samantha relaxing

 

Samantha always enjoyed hanging out with Murli on the balcony in the summer, for hours and hours. I don’t think she even realises exactly what has happened yet, due to her not walking around with her cone. She hasn’t been around in the apartment except on the few cat bed spots she wants to be at.

PoorSamanthaWithCone
Samantha with her cone these days

Regarding her cone, I was not able to use anything that covers her stitches, due to them being wire stitches, as they had to be strong after she ripped out the initial ones. Anything on top of these would make it more difficult for healing, due to the wire stitches getting stuck in anything and with Samantha’s body movement, it would cause irritation. It also helped to not cover it, because it had to drain a bit.

I will use something different, like the wonderful suggestions I got, for my sweet little girl Lisa, when she gets spayed.

We’ve been to the Vet with Samantha today: Everything has healed really well! The stitches have been removed! There is only a little crust hanging on by a little corner still, which is slightly bleeding if it’s being pulled at. It’s only superficial. But she has to keep her cone until tomorrow morning, just to give it a tiny bit more time. As soon as I get up tomorrow morning, I will free her!

Hero and Lisa on Bed
Hero (left) and Lisa

The babies Hero and Lisa haven’t been here long enough yet to be impacted as heavily by Murli’s passing. But they too loved Murli right away. They enjoyed hanging out with her looking out the balcony door, or the bedroom window to watch the birds. They were not worried about her or obviously felt comfortable around her right away. It was so cute to hear them talking to Murli with friendly meows, with their tails straight up.

There was a special moment with Hero and Murli after she passed – Not long after I had found my sweet girl Murli lying on a blanket next to a heater, after she had passed away in her sleep, Hero came along and lied down beside her. Then he took one of his front paws and gently laid it on one of Murli’s front paws. It was very special and words are not doing justice to how it was in reality.

Hero and Lisa are special. They were meant to come into my life at the time they did. I’m sure an angel was looking out for us, knowing about what is going to happen. Maybe it was my beloved Mama?

These two sweet kittens went through so much already in their short lives. They almost died themselves from starvation and dehydration after being abandoned. Hero with his severely injured and infected leg was so very close to death. If they had not been found when they did and by the right person, who did everything to save them, they would not be here. But now they are, and I gained their trust with lots of patience and love. They are healthy and thriving! Happy and feeling right at home with us.

Their lives just started. Murli will always be part of our family, always present in our hearts and minds. I know we will be reunited again once I have to go, but until then, I’ll treasure every single day with the ones I love, as every moment is special and will not return and you may not get another chance.

Love to all of you.

Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

Hot day today! Some more flopped out cats.

It’s been hot with high humidity all day. Even Murli didn’t stay on the balcony and went inside at 10am already. She’s been up on the fridge all afternoon. I found out that there is a slightly cool spot right in the middle at the top of the fridge. So that smart girl found that out at some point, which is why she’s always up there when she feels hot.

Murli_Samantha_20190811
Murli and Samantha

Even Samantha likes to be near the fridge and she enjoys Murlis big cat bed. Though Samantha likes to move around a bit more and changes her sleeping spot repeatedly.

Sonic moves around as well and changes his sleeping spot constantly throughout the day. Especially when it’s hot, he likes to simply be flopped out somewhere. It’s his favourite position when it’s hot.

Here is a of photos of him flopping all over the place. Some of the pics are from earlier in the summer, but most of them are recent.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

After Murli has been on the fridge for most of the day, she’s just gone on the balcony again. It’s almost 7pm now and still hot outside, although less than during the day of course.

Murli is herself all flopped out now…

20190812_1800_Murli_flopped_out
Murli

Cute Cat Lady Stuff
I’m enjoying working on my crochet Cat Curtain for the living room. Once I have a bit more of the cats, I’ll post my progress. I just love doing it. It’s relaxing! I especially enjoy doing it while I listen to podcasts on my phone, sitting outside on the balcony.

Something else I wanted to share are those cute things:

CatladyStuff_20190811_01
Cat figure on the bathroom window

A little cat figure on the bathroom window…

and a kitty wind chime above the balcony door…

CatladyStuff_20190811_02
Kitty wind chime

I love wind chimes! When I saw this one on Amazon back in 2018, I had to get it for our home. It’s lovely when I hear the chime when a breeze comes through. It’s been difficult to photograph because it’s so high up. The chime is hanging in front of the top window that’s above the balcony door.

There is a lot of Catlady stuff throughout our home… But it makes me happy seeing those cute things around lol.

WordPress Premium
In case you’ve seen the way my blog looks, with the new background and colours changed, that’s because I have finally decided to get WordPress Premium. The reason I did that was to be able to monetize the blog. It would be crazy awesome to be able to earn a little bit with blogging. I want to get into blogging a lot more and it would be wonderful if I can add a tiny bit of income with it. No matter how small, everything counts.

Yet another unexpected update regarding the bathroom/wet walls problem
Today a contractor from the company that will fix everything rang our doorbell. We didn’t expect anyone today, but I guess he was having a look at everything outside. He asked to have a look at the shower tap and shower wall. Of course, there’s nothing to be seen, but I explained to him what the other contractor found out.

He told me that they will come by again soon to decide how to go about fixing everything. Because apparently, they do want to get into the wall now to look at the pipe. On the other side of our shower tap is the back of the communal toilet in the hallway. And it’s that wall that is quite wet. That wall can’t be seen at all by anyone, except the people using the toilet, which are two people. I never knew what it looked like in there until the contractor showed me.

Thankfully we have our own toilet IN our apartment and also thankfully, our toilet is not wet and won’t have to be messed with.

Something has been going on there for a long time and I guess they just want to have a proper look at it all and fix it all for good.

He said they will come by at first to decide if they are ripping into the wall from the side of the communal toilet, or if they go in from our side in the shower. If they go in on our side, it means a much bigger construction site for us and tiles being removed and everything. Which is a shame, since it’s looking really nice. I love the tiles we have…

If they have to rip out the whole shower including basin and everything, then we’ll have them put in a new shower. The new shower would be paid by us anyway. The reason we would have it changed then is that the shower basin currently has no proper foundation/support underneath. As it is now, it will break completely anyway at some point. You can feel it is a bit bouncy, because the shower basin kind of just hangs in the air, for the most part, only supported at the edge probably.

Whoever did the installation of the shower and shower tap long before us, probably wasn’t a proper professional. Thankfully they’re all professionals from proper companies now. So things will be done properly.

Of course, being me, I got a refill of anxiety after hearing about having to have a construction site in our bathroom after all. But Ralph got me calmed down again, talking about how there isn’t really anything to worry about and how I should just let them get on with it, doing their jobs and then it’s over with and how it’s a good thing if they fix everything. We also don’t have to pay for that fix either, since the landlord’s insurance pays for it.

Like I wrote in my post yesterday, somebody from the landlord’s insurance company is coming tomorrow morning to also have a look at everything and measure the humidity in all the walls.

I just hope nobody tried to call me today because there’s a massive outage on Magenta Telekom’s network. Magenta T. belongs to T-Mobile. Nobody on that network had cellphone reception since the early morning. No calls or text and no internet on cellphones. But thankfully the normal internet modem works fine. It’s just the cellphones for some reason. I can’t remember there ever being such a big outage. It’s all of Austria. Not that I care all that much, since it feels actually nice to know that nobody can call me, which means I can’t get any calls regarding the bathroom/wet wall problem, which would only feed my anxiety again lol.

The title in the image below translates to: “Map of Magenta’s outages/problems”

Underneath it translates to: “The last reported problems mostly came from: …”

Screenshot of Magenta-Störungskarte _ Allestörungen
Outage areas for the Magenta (T-Mobile) outage. The only white area is where the big mountains of the alps are lol. No cell reception up there anyway.

So we’ll see what comes out of the appointment with the man from the insurance company tomorrow. I’ll keep you all updated.

Thank you all so very much for your wonderful and kind comments on yesterdays post! All of you are always so sweet to me! Love you all! 💕🙋😻😻😻💕

Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

Bathroom and wet walls update – August 11, 2019

Finally getting back to my blog! I always miss it so much. But I’m horribly unable to post as long as I’m feeling anxious. The bathroom problem kept my anxiety high for no real reason, but my anxiety is always over the top for every little worry. I wish I could get rid of it. Though most of the time I’m fine, so I’m actually lucky.

Anyway, I seem to be in a much better headspace today, thanks to my awesome Ralph, who constantly reminds me that there is nothing to worry about at all.

The Bathroom and the wet walls
Last time I left off shortly before somebody was coming by to look for the source of the humidity in the walls of the hallway/stairwell. Back then, we had no idea what to expect and we thought in the worst case we could have a total construction site in our bathroom.

Thankfully that’s not the case. The contractor from a company specialising in finding leaks in buildings and fixing it came by on July 22. He measured the humidity, measured the position of the wet spots in the stairwell and measured the position of the taps in the bathroom and some other things. It seems the humidity comes from the shower tap, and it’s not a broken water pipe. There are apparently two things wrong.

One is the plate that should protect the area behind it and the inside of the wall from shower water:

ShowerTap
The plate behind this tap is not sealed off properly, so shower water gets behind it and into the wall. It’s by now bent and a bit messed up after it had been taken off and put back on many times when it was checked out, which happened on multiple occasions.

So this plate was not sealed off properly and every time we had a shower, water would get behind it and into the wall. In addition, the tap itself drips slightly when the water is turned on. So both things together caused humidity to collect and cause the wet stains in the hallway/stairwell outside.

Though, there have been stains like that already before that have been here since before we even moved in. So what happened was probably that the stains were caused by the woman who lived in our apartment before us already. But after she moved out, the apartment was empty for quite a while and so the stains dried and so nobody worried about it (knowing the building will be renovated in the near future).

Therefore when we moved in, those already existing stains became wet again slowly over time. So, of course, no one noticed, since you would have to look closely to notice that the stains are humid. It probably was the people from the company that cleans the building that called the building management about the humidity in the stains.

That means that the tap has to be changed to a new one and the new plate needs to be properly sealed. Since it was not our fault that is was like that and because there was nothing you would have noticed from inside our apartment, I felt that we should not really have to pay for the changing of the tap. Which is why I contacted the building management about it.

Shortly afterwards, somebody from our landlord called us because he wanted to have a look at the problem himself and talk to us. He came round and wasn’t really worried about it. I just showed him where it was and what had to be done. He said that they will sort it out. He also told me that the stains all over in the stairwell have been there for years.

Then on Friday afternoon, I got a call from the landlord’s insurance company about it. He asked me about it all again and he also needs to come by and have a look at it, which will be on Tuesday morning. Of course, that caused me anxiety to spike again…

I just want it to be over with and fixed, so I don’t have to worry about it anymore.

Back when the contractor came on July 22, the cats really had a difficult and confusing morning…
Since I had no idea what to expect and because I took a possible construction site with multiple workmen into consideration, I moved all the cat’s stuff into the bed and living room and the hallway in between. Then I closed the door, so they could not get into the rest of the apartment (hallway, kitchen, bathroom, toilet…)

Needless to say… they weren’t exactly happy. They were totally confused as to what’s going on.

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Sonic: “What’s going on Mum?”

Yes, Sonic was totally confused as to why his toilet is over there all of a sudden. Also, the water fountain had moved a bit and the cat food has moved from it’s the normal spot to the right of the cat fountain. In addition, Murli’s big bed moved from the kitchen to this little table in the corner.

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Stuff is all in the wrong place

Murli’s toilet moved into the bedroom… (Samantha goes on both toilet btw, it’s only Murli and Sonic that keep to their fav ones.)

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While the door to the rest of the apartment was still open, Murli walked around and was really confused as to why her toilet was gone after having a look inside. The slightly open door you see is the door to our toilet. The human toilet, which is where her toilet usually is.

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Murli in the hallway

Also, my bicycle, which is normally in our rather wide hallway, was now on the balcony.

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So after finishing off with moving everything, I closed the door to keep the cats in the bedroom and living room area. There was lots of meowing and scratching at the door from Murli. Sonic and Samantha just sat in front of it quietly for a while. All of them looked thoroughly confused.

But thankfully it did not take long at all. So I was able to put everything back to normal soon later again.

The contractor will come to measure the humidity in the walls again a while later after the tap in our shower has been replaced with a new one and the plate sealed. If the humidity decreases after that, then it will be clear that it was just the shower tap causing the wet walls.

We’ve got household insurance now!
I finally got us household insurance, and I found a really great one too by comparing all household insurances and insurance companies. I should have done that a long time ago really. This insurance protects us really well. If I had gotten it much sooner, it would have covered anything we might have to pay to get the tap changed. We might not have to pay anything, it all depends on what the landlord’s insurance company will do after the appointment on Tuesday morning. Still, I feel much better just having it now. It’s not even expensive at all, which is awesome.

I’m working on a second post right now, because it would have been way too much to put everything in one single post.

Hope you all had a nice weekend and have a wonderful remaining Sunday!