Never open this door

Well, I never would have thought to live through this in real life. I mean we all know the movies where the young household helper (no, I am not a household helper) gets hired by a lady in an old house and there is this locked door. At night there are knocking noises and funny smells and so she one night decides to open the forbidden door. Which is where the horror movie gets started.
Now, my apartment was nice, we just got a new 2-year contract and then a few weeks later the landlord said we have to move out immediately because his daughter needs the apartment. To wife this was all normal, who cares contracts anyway so we looked for new apartments in the same area in NeiHu (military veterans housing). One apartment apparently had a second entrance, same door type as the main entrance. Second door was locked and a sign in both Chinese and English went:

NEVER OPEN THIS DOOR
SMELLY EMISSIONS FROM STAIRCASE

Real estate agent said there is an emergency exit second staircase behind the door. We said we can only rent the apartment if we can at least once take a peak behind the locked door. Landlord refused, said the old staircase is closed down below at first floor with bricks (huh?) and the door could never be opened. End of discussion.

I suspected a secret garbage dump of the tenants, though wife and mother in law had their beds on a dead body behind the door. Mother in law warned I could not rent the apartment because I do not speak Chinese*** and if at night a rusty voice demands opening the door I would probably do it. And then… gulp

Well, at that point I imagined really hearing knocks or whatever at midnight through the door… :smiley:

Did not rent it. Just a weird Taiwan story I wanted to share.

*** Not true, learning Chinese is so easy to me that I restart with it every year!

Par for the course in Taiwan really. Minor problem with the building? No worries, just pretend the problem isn’t there, spend a small fortune to block off all access so that nobody falls down the ten-foot hole/illegal sewer/collapsing floor, and bob’s your (honest) uncle. You what? Fix it? What on earth are you rambling about, you crazy foreigner.

Reminds me of the hatch on the first floor of my building. The landlord claimed there was nothing down there but a recess with pipes. I believes that for three years. Three weeks ago some municipal workers showed up, demanded access to the building and opened that hatch. Turns out there is a dungeon down there big enough to swallow 7 fully grown Taiwanese men and their tools for about three hours. I sometimes wonder what eldritch horror they went to worship down there…

Gulp. They are in the walls. And under the floor. They are everywhere…

Forgot to mention that the guys came back out of the dungeon. Just in case it wasn’t clear. :slight_smile:

Reminds me that I’ve been meaning to write about the now sealed off air shelters in Taiwan. Seems some kids in Hualien I think now offer tours of some of them, reopened and cleaned up a bit. We had one in the premises, but they closed it permanently as it was “dangerous”. :astonished:

That’s the magical word Taiwanese authorities utter when they want a quick and effective explanation to forbid something.

On a note related to your post, I wonder if anyone has ever explored the old mines in the Pingxi and Wulai area. There are some pretty cool tunnel entrances both above and next to the Neidong waterfall, but, seeing how the area is prone to landslides, I’ve never ventured inside more than a few meters.

I liked this so much that I added it to my signature. :laughing: I hope you don’t mind.

I liked this so much that I added it to my signature. :laughing: I hope you don’t mind.[/quote]

I feel honored. I actually had a Mark Twain quote about “to quit smoking is easy…” in my mind when I wrote that :wink:

That’s the magical word Taiwanese authorities utter when they want a quick and effective explanation to forbid something.

On a note related to your post, I wonder if anyone has ever explored the old mines in the Pingxi and Wulai area. There are some pretty cool tunnel entrances both above and next to the Neidong waterfall, but, seeing how the area is prone to landslides, I’ve never ventured inside more than a few meters.[/quote]

They offer tours of some of the ones in…Jinjiashan? The place near Jiufen that starts with a Jin. I spent a week there so you’d think I’d be able to remember the name. Shryu Middle School for Miserable Rich Kids is up there.

Jinguashi.

Jinguashi.[/quote]

Thanks.

BTW. the landlord now came (too late) with the explanation the rear staircase would have emissions from the B1 parking deck. OK, so maybe they closed the 1st floor entrance to the rear staircase for good because they are afraid of burglars. I still like the “undead grandma roaming the stairs” explanation of mother in law and wife much more though :stuck_out_tongue: