Tian and I awoke this Sunday morning at 9:15 to the sounds of buzz saws and hammers from the apartment directly above ours. The vibrations reverberated through our entire apartment ruining a relaxing morning and making it difficult to do anything at all.
At first we did our best to ignore it. My dad’s famous sayings of “Does it bother you?” kept coming to mind, as it often does in China, and I didn’t want to let this noise get the best of me and win. Indeed getting upset in China often does nothing but raise your blood pressure, so apathy becomes standard practice. And like my dad, the Chinese have a phrase perfect for this type of situation, “Eat bitterness.”
But nearly 45 minutes later, Tian and I had had our fill of bitterness and we finally admitted the deafening noise that showed no signs of abating soon was really bothering us. Tian called the management company, and they said they would send a guard. Not trusting them to actually do that, we decided to go upstairs ourselves.
We loudly pounded and kicked on the front door for about 20 seconds trying to be heard over the noise inside. A lone construction worker came to answer. As he opened the door, we looked inside and saw the apartment completely gutted and big piles of materials inside. Tian spoke her mind in Chinese (pretty impressive), while I stood behind her trying to look intimidating and interjecting the few words I know to express frustration.
While it has helped end the noise for now, Tian and I believe we probably will be dealing with this issue for the next month. In other words, we may have won the battle but lost the war. Hopefully they will take our recommendation and do the noisiest work during weekdays. We shall see.