Today I learned for sure that someone else got the best apartment I have seen so far. It was the people who were leaving it just as I arrived to see it. No matter, because I found a less good but entirely acceptable place on Chapel Street, near Rideau. I submitted my application and then learned that someone else had already done so. There is some chance I will get this new place, but it seems likely that the slog will continue.
Next time I am presented with a renter juggling different application envelopes, it may be wise to introduce some confusion. I know that I have trouble remembering which envelope was on top when another suddenly appears with a neat collection of large bills inside…
I suppose it is all a bit ironic. The federal bureaucracy seems pretty amiable, very professional, and more laid back than expected. The housing market is opaque, full of frustration, and tinged with the unseemly on many edges.
[Update: 18 July 2007] It has been confirmed that the previous applicant got the second apartment I applied for. Having this happen twice in as many days is very frustrating. Clearly, good apartments in Ottawa are snapped up in hours. The bad ones, by contrast, linger for weeks on the various listings. Wearily, I must continue the search.