Our old terraced house was so cramped on our left, we could smell the garlic from Mr and Mrs Frog….
We moved into a new home last night. It was odd to do it at 11.00 pm, but the Agent said it had to be done then. We’d been talking about it for years, but last night we completed the move.
We had worried about the position – would the more distant neighbours be friendly? – would they like us? Yet, we were not perfect, of course. Some people liked to remind us of our reaction when we objected to the new neighbours that moved into the upstairs flat across the hall we’d always called “Windrush” on account of the draughts in our grand terraced house years ago, but that’s all over now.
We’ve moved into a lovely new detached house not even close to any neighbour like our old terraced house surrounded as we were on all sides, and above. Our old house was so cramped on our left, we could smell the garlic from Mr and Mrs Frog, except they always said Monsieur and Madame, and from upstairs could hear the noisy shoes of the Mr and Mrs Clog – they like to be called Meneer and Mevrouw for some strange reason – through the walls of the house on that old and common Market Street. It was nice in some ways being so close to people, but no, we like this new isolated house, ‘Albion’.
Mind you we had a problem moving in that three-piece tartan suite into the drawing room, two thirds of it didn’t want to move. But we’ve squeezed it in. I hope it stays there.
Then there was that pesky Irish dresser, the Agent said we’d have no trouble reaching it, but now a leak has sprung up in the kitchen and we have to step over a puddle on the floor. There seems no way to avoid it, but the Agent said not to worry and we believe him.
It’s a funny new house as it has not only a view to the east – OK, not as good as the one in the old house – but now we can see all around. To the west we can see the stars of an Old Glory and that great deal maker in the sky, to the south there’s the welcoming sight of Africa. My Victorian grandmother used to tell me of the wondrous stories of the great feats achieved by Rhodes and Livingstone, by Speke and Burton and Grant. What days they must have been? and the Agent tells us that such times will return. And to the north, by a circuitous route, it must be said, there’s China, a great conundrum. They have sent us many tokens of their affection from plastic toys to mobile data networks, so they must want to be friends and I do like their chop suey, and sweet and sour pork.
No, this house is going to be fine. We did so many searches and so much due diligence things can’t go wrong. Although my wife did remind me that the searches were sometimes contradictory, for every report saying things would be fine there was a contradictory one. So, I don’t know, but I’m hoping it’ll be all right.
When I think back to the confusion they had in 1914 when Grey couldn’t talk to Fritz’s agent and they fell out big time. Then there was the time when Neville got the title deeds to the land and waved them for all to see at Heston aerodrome, but then Fritz’s son said it was worthless and he stole the land anyway. Look what happened next!
Oh, well. We waved our bit of paper, our new home’s particulars last night. One Welsh room, nice and quiet overlooking the rugby pitch, a problematic Scottish wing, ‘I’ve nailed the furniture down. Should keep it there for a generation,’ a tradesman told me. I hope so. But it’s the bit of garden beyond lake at the bottom of the demesne, that worries me the most, but the Agent says it’s small and few people go there.
So, chin up, the new house is going to be fine, with cheaper food, cleaner energy and… what else did the Agent say?