Most apartments here are rented unfurnished. No stove, no fridge, nada.
So we have been shopping in the "segundas" for used appliances. We bought an old stove for $130 US which was delivered yesterday. They had a really difficult time installing it. So difficult, in fact, that it had to be installed in the center of the kitchen. At least it worked so we could prepare our first hot meal in the apartment: penne with marinara and a tomato and cucumber salad. Mmmm...
Then today I called the landlady to ask her who she knew who could fix a stove. She gave me a number. I called, told them the best I could what was wrong (the copper piping was not flexible, and I feared that I would break it if I bent it too much). Two men arrived in 30 minutes, completely reinstalled it as it should be done (with a flexible hose) and they cleaned and regulated it properly. Now it works like a charm.
And it cost me $70 more. So the stove cost $200...for which we probably could have bought a much newer stove. Oh well.
At least I had the presence of mind to ask the men how to resell stuff at the end of our stay. Apparently there is a radio station in Ensenada that does nothing but classified advertisements in Spanish. They said that if I wrote up an ad and gave it to the radio station, I'd get calls within minutes from people who wanted to buy stuff cheap.
So now I'm feeling more confident about buying a decent fridge and probably a washer and dryer.
While the whole process is a bit frustrating, it's also a good way to learn vocabulary. How else could I have learned the words for "tools," "drill," and "copper pipe"?