introductions! introductions!

most people would find my situation incredible. i live in one of the poshest condominiums in one of the most upscale addresses in the city. i am a lawyer. but, i am what you'd call a public defender. i do court time, write hundreds of pages of legal brief, day in and day out, and i accept live chickens as payments. i work for the poor and accused, yet at the end of month, all i have to show for it is a measly check, and some bundles of vegetables.

you ask how
, then, do i get to live in a pad that's obviously worth more than what my bosses would rake in, even with those extra perks that would make their lifestyle checks all the more dubious? simple. a successful girlfriend.

i have absolutely no qualms about saying that my girlfriend pays for much of the monthly rent at our place. i pay for the utilities, the maintenance, and the monthly groceries. we rented this place two years ago, when we were both in the same company: i was a corporate junior lawyer (even without passing the bar yet), and she was a property consultant.

two years passed, and she's in new york, while i ply my trade in a rundown government office with no centralized airconditioning and with barely adequate plumbing (well, most of the time, at least).

about a year ago, almost defeated by depression and questions of machismo and egoism, i offered to let the place go. she flatly refused, saying that a place like ours would be hard to come by. i told her i couldn't afford even half of the rent, and she offered to pay for it. so basically, i'm just bumming around her place, service as its katiwala while she's abroad.

so there, i think i've humiliated myself enough. it's raining outside, and my place is warm. i love this place, if only for the centralized air conditioning that proved to be my daily perk during the last summer. the friendly guards help you out too, they're actually fun to talk to late at night. it would be perfect, if only i could figure out where to put those damned chickens without disturbing the neighbors.

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