Everyone's allowed a merton moment once in a while, right? Well, this is mine:
I'm in a state of limbo right now. To give a bit of background, I've been a Chinese language student for the past two years. My classes finished recently, and I'm now looking for a job in Beijing. My situation's a bit dicey because I'm here on a one month (renewable once) short-term visa that I wrangled after my student visa expired. I've still got about 3 weeks left on its first iteration. A proper job would not only give me money, but would also let me stay in the country legally for a year or more.
Now, I had been under the impression that I had a job, but it turns out as interested as the company said they were (I was asked "can you start on Monday?"), they simply don't have a position for me to fill (a friend on the inside confirms this, and I blame their misleading statements on translational difficulties on the part of the HR manager). This is awkward because I had made some tentative plans around that job -- such as sub-letting out my flat to a friend on the assumption that I would have a job, work visa, and new apartment selected based partially on relative proximity to my place of work.
Fortunately, I get along well with my friend, so I'm living on my own couch. The problem now is that I have no job, no particularly good new leads on a job, and only the roughest of ideas of where my place of work would be if/when a job turned up. The other issue is that I may not be able to rent a flat at all without a residence permit, which is contingent on my having a work visa.
I also told my landlord at the beginning of the summer that I wouldn't need my flat after August. Its location is convenient for going to the universities, but is on the other side of the city from places I would be likely to work. Having read through the commuting forums, I know it's not an insurmountable distance, but 20+ miles of commuting every day is more than I'd like to do in Beijing. Furthermore, I have a crazy neighbour who shouts and doesn't let me sleep (nothing I can do about this -- I've asked), my electricity supply doesn't let me run my toaster and air conditioner at the same time, I'm sick of having a 2 sq. metre bathroom without a separate shower so that when I take a shower, everything (toilet, sink, floor) gets wet, and I'm so far away from the centre of the city that I can never invite my more centrally located friends over.
I'm looking at an apartment tomorrow morning in a much more central location. If it's nice, I'm tempted just to take it on the assumption that a decent job will turn up, and then stall the landlord as long as I can on registering with the Public Security Bureau until I actually do get a job. Do you think this is a dumb idea? Or should I just stick with my couch and current apartment for as long as I can until I have a job for sure?
For the record, I'm also angry with BikeForums for warping me to the point that I don't want to live TOO close to where I'd be likely to work, since that would cut into my daily riding.
Sorry for the length of this message, but I needed to rant/vent a bit. And if any of you have contacts with companies in China who want a nice Canadian guy with decent Chinese language skills, let me know