Finding the Zona Colonial Apartment

I wanted to live in “The Zone”. Without a car and not liking being stuck in the apartment at night. I didn’t like paying a taxi when I could walk someplace. I always thought that a taxi ride was the same price as a few beers. So if I walked I could stop and drink my taxi ride and enjoy it a whole lot more!
So I went to the Galeria to hang with Mamita and Jimmy one day with the intent purpose of going on an apartment quest. Of course, Dominican style, we had to sit around and discuss that I might not be able to find one. That it may be too expensive. That it could take a long time locating a place. In true Dominican form the discussion could have continued forever about all the what if’s. So I embarked on my quest.
I knew the general direction I wanted to live in so I just started walking and asking people I saw. I found one place right away but it was too small. I’d never fit me, my dog and my small amount of belongings in that place so I continued.
I learned that day what not to do. I’m so used to people helping out because they want to not because they expect money for it. Maybe buy the person a beer or just a thank you was always good, or so I thought.

I asked some guys sitting on a step drinking if they knew any places around for rent. They saw Gringa and dollars all over me I guess. The guy took me around the corner, where I was heading anyhow, and showed me a sign. Of course he wanted to call the number on the sign cause the guy was his “best friend.” We went to the nearest Colmado and I forked over the pay phone money. I was going to call with my celphone but didn’t want to hand the guy my phone. We had a beer (I paid) while he made the call. There was no answer. So I needed to keep looking. I tried to get away from the guy cause he was getting a little loud. He wouldn’t let me go! He wanted money. The Colmado guy told him to quit bugging me. I was getting pissed. I didn’t want to give him money after I gave him a few cigs and got a grande presidente for us to share. But to get rid of the guy I gave him the change I had. I wasn’t going to give him and bills! Did he think my head screwed on! jejeje

I had my cash, other than a hundred pesos, in my bra. I call that boob money. I told him all I had was the change and a little more to get home with. I gave him the change and told him “largate de me”(Get away from me. Mamita taught me that)The Colmado guy started talking to him so I could make my get away.
I wrote down another number and returned to the galeria so Mamita could call the number of the apartment. I figured it was better to get a Dominican ask for the price of the apartment so I could get the normal price and not the American price.
We got the guy and he met me at the apartment in an hour. I took Mamita with me, and we picked up a few other friends on the walk. Some tourist guy that was from Argentina and a Dominican friend, Chino, who is my Dominican brother and self-proclaimed body guard. We all walked down to see the place.
Suprisingly the man was only about 10 minutes late. We all went in and looked around. It was a studio apartment so there wasn’t a lot to look at. The balcony is what sold me. I could see the Caribbean from it. And there was a park and a perfect place for Sniffy, the dog, to enjoy. So I told the guy right there I wanted the place. He called the owner and the next day we all met at the galeria.
Mamita was my co-signer. I took a lawyer friend of mine to sign the lease just to make it look good. I DID pay that lawyer with beer only. I paid my 3 months. !st month rent, deposit and the other fee that is non-refundable which I have never figured out. But it is the custom in the country.
I had my apartment. Just where I wanted to live. I was very lucky. Now I just had to figure out how to get my stuff from the old place to the new…

One thought on “Finding the Zona Colonial Apartment

  1. >What a great blog!

    I enjoy reading about your adventures in the DR. I have lived here for 3 year, last of which in Santo Domingo. I usually do my exploring beyond the city limits but reading your entries have inspired me to spend more time in the Zona Colonial (beyond giving the 1/2 day history tour to the visiting friends).



    p.s. Next time you need a truck (or ride) send me an email.

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