These past few mornings have seen me awake before Hubby, and although I have to nudge him so that I can get out of bed, he’s rolled back under the duvet and gone back to sleep.
Maggie stirs when I do, so she’s on full alert for her first walk of the day and I’m happy to get dressed to take her out.
Walking the dog this morning got me thinking, and as I haven’t done a Walk Thoughts post for a while, I thought I’d share.
This morning was glorious and we’d slept in until almost 9!
Hubby wanted a shower, so we both got up and not bothering with our gripples, made our way to the car park.
Oops. More slippery than we thought and nearly landing on my chin, Hubby spread some grit on the gantry for our return trip, and we parted company at the gents.
I’ve noticed several houses have SOLD signs up in the Avenue, and a couple are having extensions built. It made me think of the properties Hubby and I have lived in since we met in 1989, and with each step on my walk, I was working out the time we’d stayed in each one.
October 1989- May 1990.
Our first ‘share’ was a one bedroom flat being the bottom half of a converted detached property. It had a lounge, bedroom (previous dining room), kitchen-diner, and the lean-to have been converted to a bathroom and separate toilet.
We remember that loo so well as we stained the porcelain flushing away all of my depression medication! We also remember the kitchen walls streaming with water from the upstairs bathroom as someone was washing their hair and the sink hadn’t been sealed.
Our landlord put the rent up by 25% when our initial six month let was up and with the introduction of the Poll Tax that year, we had an extra £100 a month to find and couldn’t.
I hadn’t known at the time, but I was entitled to a mortgage subsidy through the Bank, and so we bought our first house.
May 1990 – June 1996.
It was a one bedroom ‘cluster home’ in a block of four and everyone had a corner.
It was tiny, but not as small as the boat, though it’s close!
I hated that house from the minute we moved in.
The window hadn’t been repaired as promised, the water wasn’t on, the electric company charged us £40 to re-connect us on day one, and someone had forgotten to seal the cat flap so we had over a year of ‘feline visitations’ as the property had been empty that long.
Still, living in a small space taught us a lot about ourselves and how to cope (always turn anticlockwise in the kitchen). If we argued, there was nowhere to go, no doors to slam (they were all sliders), and the only time the pair of us ‘lost it’ resulted in going to see Lethal Weapon 3 at the flicks on separate days.
House prices crashed and we ended up in negative equity (mortgage debt more than house value), but with careful planning, going without and changing the mortgage to a repayment type, we were able to sell and move on, covering our legal expenses, the shortfall, and deposit on the new house.
June 1996-August 1998.
My dream of a three bed semi, with space for a conservatory on the back and a veg plot.
After replacing the kitchen and building in fitted wardrobes in the master bedroom, we applied to be foster parents and were turned down because I wouldn’t give up my job.
No matter I was the major wage earner, it didn’t count I’d done it before, and the stupid social worker wanted us to foster under fives short-term rather than the teenagers with view to adoption as was our intent, so we had foreign students instead.
Our attached neighbours went on a six month holiday, renting out their house to ‘relatives’. It was a living nightmare for us with parties practically every night and weekend. Should no party be under way, we were subjected to loud TVs or radios on different stations in different rooms.
We weren’t the only ones to officially complain when our polite requests for keeping the noise down fell on deaf ears and increased volumes, and when our neighbours returned, the For Sale sign was up, and we were on the move again.
August 1998 – March 2007.
The longest we’d been in one house, a detached bungalow which we modified from a 2 bed 2 reception to 3 beds by knocking down a wall. I hit it once with the sledgehammer and it just collapsed as the builders hadn’t tied it in properly to the existing brickwork.
We had some fun here, selling a monkey puzzle tree (buyer collects but not telling them they’d have to dig it up), another new kitchen, revamped bathroom, put in (to be later taken out) back door as there wasn’t one, replacement windows, more foreign students and a supermarket that extended their extended extension as well as their opening hours.
April 2007 – August 2007
Temporary accommodation which blew up in our faces and on the road in a tent and later caravan before buying The Cottage just before another house price crash.
August 2007 – June 2014
Our residence was a converted school already with a conservatory, but with a large garden so we had our veg patch.
Mum came up to stay for holidays of either one or two months, we put in yet another new kitchen (there’s a theme going here**), decorated throughout, and learnt about cess pits.
Over the years it became too much though, so we decided to sell, making a substantial loss, and our buyers were Hell Related.
We had no idea how their sale was progressing until we were given less than seven days to exchange, complete and move out as they were now ‘homeless’. We were only partially packed, had nothing lined up for furniture storage let alone anywhere to go, but we were the ones being threatened that our buyers would pull out if we didn’t comply.
After heated words between Hubby and the Estate Agent, it was finally agreed to give us 15 days which was the minimum the utility companies wanted for change of ownership. Funny how our buyers denied knowing a timeframe yet mail for them taking over our phone line plus their new Sky package contract landed on our mat the day after their ultimatum.
June 2014-July 2014
Staying with MOH whilst house hunting, and ended up buying the boat.
** Guess what we’re doing shortly?